WordPress is one of the most recognizable names in the web development space. It’s an open source format with thousands of templates and plugins available, and it’s the most used website solution for freelance designers and small and medium sized businesses. As a web development and web design agency in Ventura CA, we consult with hundreds of businesses each year, and most prospective and new clients are either seeking to migrate their website away from WordPress, or they need our consultation to determine whether WordPress is a viable solution for their upcoming project.
The real reason WordPress isn’t working for your business is usually because a template based turn-key solution isn’t what your business needs for its website. So, it’s a matter of not selecting the right tool for the job.
WordPress attracts projects with limited budgets at time
WordPress as an excellent platform for projects where there is a team with the skills and resources to put in careful planning, execution, and ongoing support. What we commonly find is that WordPress is an attractive option for companies, projects, and designers who are seeking to put in the minimal amount of work and spend as little as possible on their website. This results in many cut corners and often poor work that reflects badly on WordPress, when really this is just a reflection of the effort, planning, and investment that went into the project.
How WordPress projects usually fall short
What we often see is businesses purchasing a low cost template in order to reduce their costs, but their company ultimately needs a website that a turn-key WordPress template can’t provide without careful planning and execution. Each template varies immensely in terms of flexibility, ease of modification, and features. It’s common for projects to select templates that are challenging to modify, even by very experienced web developers. This goes back to careful planning. Issues such as ease of modification and future flexibility should be considered before selecting a template and building it out.
Living with the results of poor planning
Building a WordPress site that makes it difficult to modify the site, build new areas of the site, and create new features often leads to businesses avoiding updating their site and having a stale digital presence. This is a huge missed opportunity to say the least, because a website serves as most company’s digital headquarters, and a well imagined and well built website has the power to work for the company, drawing prospective buyers into it and converting those visitors into new customers and clients. The opportunity cost of moving forward with a poorly conceived and developed website is difficult to measure, but in certain industries it can be millions of dollars.
The most common WordPress problems that we help people with:
Messy website structure
This can take many forms including cumbersome url naming conventions, excessive page counts and duplicate pages, and labyrinths of broken links and dead website areas.
Blockage of search engine indexing
Some WordPress builds simply have trouble getting indexed by search engines like Google. There are too many possible reasons to list, but it can be related to messy website structure, disorganized content, slow site speeds, and many other problems.
There are many nice looking WordPress templates available, but in many cases they do not provide flexibility for future modifications to the site. This can create major problems when a company needs to provide new information on its website. Content building is a core foundation of search engine marketing, and when a company or marketing team can not easily build in new site areas and modifications in structure to the website, their ability to build traffic through content building and search engine traffic will be greatly damaged.
Low quality hosting
This is more a symptom of poorly selected hosting solutions than of a flaw in the WordPress platform itself. Still, because companies who choose a low-cost WordPress build tend to search for the lowest cost hosting available, WordPress sites frequently are unstable, slow loading, or crashed. There are high quality WordPress hosting solutions such as WP Engine, Site Ground, and Cloudflare. These companies offer high performance hosting or acceleration for WordPress sites at premium costs ranging from $30 to $100 per month. However, you’ll find most WordPress sites are not using this level of hosting.
As you can see, most of the common WordPress problems we’ve observed are tied together. One problem affects or creates another, and all are ultimately symptoms of poor planning, companies not selecting a template that fits their business, and not anticipating what their near and long term website needs will be, and building a site that meets those future needs as well as their immediate needs.
How do I know if a WordPress template will work for my company’s website?
This is a decision that you should not make on your own, but with the guidance of a professional web developer. A general consultation can examine questions about your company and its needs including:
- What is the purpose of the site / what do you need the site to do for your company?
- How much content will the site contain?
- How often will you need to modify the site with new information and data?
- Are you seeking to build traffic through Search Engine Marketing (SEM)?
- Are you driving Paid Traffic from Google Ads or Facebook Ads to your website?
- Do you sell products through your website or store sensitive data?
- Do you require special features or customizations to your website in order to conduct business?
There are many more questions that would need to be answered to make an informed decision about whether WordPress is a viable solution for your company. The answers to these questions helps to build a profile of your project’s needs, then create a solution to those needs.
So do we recommend WordPress for a business website?
We can recommend WordPress in a few scenarios:
- Client must use WordPress due to project or company specifications.
- Project budget is very limited
- Microsites, sites for short term events, or sites which will not need future modifications.
There are web design agencies that can perform impressive work in the WordPress ecosystem, and they’re able to execute these builds because the projects are carefully planned and well funded. Whether you’re building on WordPress or another platform, careful planning and continuous maintenance and support are needed. Sometimes WordPress may be the right choice, or there may be other options which are a better fit with your company’s short and long term needs.
The Final Code
Web development and web design agency in Ventura, CA
We work with hundreds of businesses in Ventura, Santa Barbara, and Los Angeles counties, as well as throughout the United States. This has provided us with a huge level of exposure to mainstream website platforms such as WordPress. One of the most requested problems that people need help with is troubleshooting their WordPress site, planning a migration from one WordPress site to another, or deciding if WordPress makes sense for their projects going forward. These clients are taking the right steps by consulting with a development team to understand what their options are, and then making informed decisions that are right for their project based on professional insights.
If you’re experiencing problems with a WordPress website, please contact us for a free consultation to discuss your website. We’ll be able to provide an honest analysis and provide valuable analysis and recommend a plan of action for you going forward.