The face of marketing is changing. Where print advertisements and well placed television adverts were once the best way to reach the most people, today finding an audience and reaching potential costumers is largely accomplished online.
It was only a few years ago that Facebook was little more than an idea created in the mind of University students. Today, that idea is the largest social networking site with over one billion users. With a single platform boasting numbers such as this, it is clear to see why businesses are making a mad dash to the internet to market themselves.
While social media is an excellent way to get a business’ message out there and noticed, social networking alone is not enough to convert internet users into customers. Instead, companies need a place to drive their audience to a place where their audience can be directed in order to encourage turning engagement into profit. The place where this is going to happen is a business’ website.
In order to promote this type of profitable business to client interaction, a business’ website needs to be well maintained and up to date. The days of making your site and leaving it be for months or even years are gone!
Your audience expects more and will judge your overall business and professionalism by the quality of your website. Furthermore, the search engines now look at your site with a much more critical eye (or what ever robots have) and the more up to date and relevant your site, the better it will do in the search engines.
Of course we are well aware that keeping a well maintained website can be difficult and is time consuming for every business; however, you cannot let this constraint stand between your business and your online marketing success. Utilizing a content management system, or CMS, is an excellent option for creating and maintaining a vibrant and interesting web page. Even better, a good CMS let’s your creative marketing, design, and SEO teams focus more on strategy, tactics, & content and less on administration, data entry, and programming.
A content management system is an online tool which makes the complicated language of general website maintenance uncomplicated. By using CMS you are able to add images, create new blog posts, and post more content without delving into the coding of your business’ web page. Most content management systems are as simple to use as MS Word and any editing to your page can be done online from anywhere in the world!
When you’re running a business, whether it is a shoe store or a ski lodge, chances are your area of expertise has more to do with shoes or the best ski destinations than it does with HTML coding. Even if you are the owner of a ski lodge and a part time coding expert, you’ve already got your hands full managing a busy ski lodge and you haven’t got the time necessary to dedicate to coding individual pages for your website and keeping your business’ blog up to date. It is instances such as these that necessitate the use of a content management system.
If you’re looking for a content management system, WordPress might be the best CMS answer you’ve been looking for. We have built hundreds of sites in WordPress and strongly recommend it for most of our clients.
Perhaps one of the biggest reasons for WordPress’ success as a blogging and CMS tool is the affordability of it. While not everything in WordPress is completely free (as is often assumed) the core modules are, making it an affordable option for managing the content on your website. It is important to note that many themes and plugins are something you’re going to have to pay for. Additionally, while there are free WordPress options available, you are going to have to pay to have your site hosted somewhere and unless you have lots of time to do it yourself, you should hire a team of proven experts to build the site for you too. It may sound more expensive than having some 15 year old kid do it as an after school project but the overall design, marketability, correct set up, security, and plugin installation are best done by experts.
The practicality of using WordPress as a CMS goes well beyond the cost effectiveness of it. The amount of control WordPress gives you with minimal coding is phenomenal. When operating as a content management system, WordPress is almost completely malleable and easily allows you to add the content necessary to make your webpage into a masterpiece. With minimal coding, WordPress can function exactly the way that you want it to giving you access to all of your files and folders. It is also possible to create plugins or themes which can be added into WordPress changing the design of your website in just moments. For an idea of what you can do with WordPress take a look at some of these sites that we have built in WordPress.
The user interface of WordPress is streamlined and easy to understand. Everything you will need to create posts and content for your site is laid out in a practical and purposeful way, taking the hassle out of posting to your page. WordPress utilizes a very simple “WYSIWYG” or, What You See Is What You Get Editor (more or less 🙂 ). This means that as you create your stories or posts, you won’t have to make code level adjustments to achieve proper spacing, sizing, or what have you.
WordPress gives users access to as many as 18,000 plugins which serve to create additional functionality to any WordPress site. Adding a WordPress plugin to your site is as simple as downloading a piece of software. Many plugins are free, while others come at a minimal fee.
The type of plugin you are going to use for your WordPress site is going to depend on the type of site you are creating. Take a moment to have a browse of the multitude of WordPress plugins to choose from.
When we talk about WordPress plugins, it is important to note that they will require additional maintenance after their initial installation. WordPress upgrades quite frequently. A common issue users have with their plugins is that these plugins do not upgrade in tandem with WordPress meaning what was once compatible is no longer functional with the latest WordPress upgrade. To combat this, make sure you have a plan for upgrading your plugins and make sure that if you use a web development team to handle that for you, they are on top of this. Failure to update plugins and themes leads to security holes that hackers DO exploit.
WordPress offers users a number of themes to choose from which change the design of a site. The number of WordPress themes available either directly through WordPress or from any other website, which means that you have literally thousands of upon thousands of options available when it comes to the look at feel of your webpage.
While WordPress is not the only option when deciding on a content management system, it is the one we highly recommend thanks to the user friendliness and the high degree of customizability it allows.