I’ve been doing business online for a few years now, and for the past 3 years I’ve been using WordPress sites exclusively.  I’ve actually lost count of how many sites I’ve created using it for myself.  But besides myself, I’ve created sites for different clients and I’ve also taught many of my students how to create their own sites and blogs for their businesses who now have them up and running online as well.

Why am I such a raving fan?  Here are just a few of my top reasons:

1) It’s Free

Many small business owners are just in need a basic, professional looking site that doesn’t cost and arm and a leg.  I’m definitely not against hiring others if you need any type of consulting service when it comes to your site—but the actual WordPress software is free and you can even customize the look of it for free with themes. The bare minimum of what you will be paying for is the domain name and the hosting for your site.

2) Can be Installed Easily (Usually with “1 Click”)

You want to try go with a host that offers something called “1 click install” because this is the simplest and easiest way to get your site up and running. Yes, WordPress is easy to use and you don’t need to hire someone to install it for you. However—since you have to go with a webhost anyway, the best thing to do is to choose one that offers this 1-click install. Installing WordPress is probably the most “tech-y” part of using it, and if you know that you’re just not the tech-y type, it’s a good idea to have your webhost handle it or walk you through it.

3) Easy to Use and Update

With a traditional website, in most cases you are at the mercy of a webmaster—waiting for them to make the updates you want, waiting for them to add new pages or content, etc…all the while paying them really well.  Most of us are aren’t coders and are too busy running our businesses to worry about administering our site. One of the best things about WordPress is how simple and quick it is for you or someone on your team to update your site or publish a new post or page really at the push of a button. No super-tech-y knowledge is necessary.

4) Easy to Customize with Themes

A theme with regard to WordPress is a way to alter and customize the design, look and presentation of your WordPress site.  You can also think of it as a template. You can go with a free theme or pay for a premium one.  There are countless free themes available and you are likely to find one that fits the vision you have of the way your site should look. Actually, if you Google the phrase “free WordPress themes” you get over 47 million results.  WordPress has their own free theme directory on their website and it’s a great place to start.

5) Add Lots of Functionality with Plugins

Plugins are one of the reasons WordPress is so popular.  Most plugins are free and add functionality to your site and allow it to do almost anything you can imagine.  WordPress itself was built to be very “lean” and simple—and plugins exist so that each user can tailor their site exactly the way that they want. I once heard someone use an analogy to describe them that I really liked.  They said that a WordPress site is like a base model of a car.  And you can think of plugins as features or upgrades you can add to that car—like a sunroof, leather seats, a better stereo, and things like that.  Plugins are like little upgrades for your WordPress site, but as I mentioned, the great thing is most of them are free.

Bottom line, if you are in business for yourself or you want to go into business for yourself, you need a web presence, plain and simple. We all know that when people are looking for services or products, referrals, speakers for events, etcetera, they are not going to the Yellow Pages. They are going online to look.

Plus, it’s worth mentioning that just a few years ago, having a “web presence” meant sinking time, money and effort into a website.  Getting someone to build you a website was NOT (and still isn’t) cheap.  WordPress has changed all that, and it’s just one of many great reasons why you’ll want to take a closer look.

Photo credit: Leaferne

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