There are two types of WordPress platforms, and most technical-type Virtual Assistants are very familiar with the difference between the two.
This is a blogging platform that uses WordPress.org’s open source platform to run its blogging service. It’s a free service hosted by WordPress. The domain (web address or URL) is provided by WordPress.com and looks something like yourwebsite.wordpress.com.
It comes with a lot of restrictions. After all, you don’t expect them to give you their best service with free hosting, do you? You can choose from the free themes and widgets that they offer. Plugins and video uploads are not allowed.
Because of all the restrictions and the unprofessional URL, WordPress.com is not recommended for businesses. I also don’t recommend upgrading to their paid hosting to get access to all of the features. Others have had negative experiences in doing that.
If you haven’t yet been convinced about how powerful the WordPress Open Source Platform is, you will be soon. By using WordPress to build your website you’ll be joining some large corporations, universities and many thousands of small businesses who already know how fabulous WordPress is.
Wikipedia.com says that WordPress is “An open source Content Management System (CSM), often used as a blog publishing application powered by PHP and MySQL. It has many features including a plugin architecture and templating system… WordPress is the most popular CMS in use today.”
Because it is so popular, you will likely be able to find expert help at an affordable price. It should be no problem to find a Virtual Assistant who is an expert in WordPress setup, design and security.
Open Source software is free, as are many templates, themes and plugins. Templates and themes are the overall design of the site. You simply purchase or get a free theme and modify it to meet your needs. Plugins give WordPress extra functionality. There are thousands of plugins, including social media, security, shopping carts, membership sites, message boards, RSS feeds and much, much more. The possibilities are truly endless with WordPress.
WordPress is also extremely search engine friendly! Many people say that Google loves WordPress. It’s setup in such a way that even a novice, with the right plugins, can put in SEO features such as meta tags, image tags, keywords and coding without knowing how to code at all. With WordPress, you can easily incorporate a blog right into your website, which will also help you rank higher in the Google search results. Additionally, creating a website with various types of layouts is easy.
A magazine type layout is just a click away with WordPress as a content management system. If you want to run a local business directory, simply find a theme or template that is already set up with the right look and plugins to do the type of functions you desire. Editing and creating new pages for your site is as easy as sending an email, and there is nothing to download. Everything can be accomplished via web browser.
To use the basic features of WordPress, you don’t need to be a coder or know anything about HTML. The most important thing is to find the right theme and plugins to create your own look to showcase your brand and unique selling proposition.
Most people, once they learn how to use WordPress, are literally able to build a site and have it up and running within hours. There are tutorials available on the WordPress.org site. If you can follow directions and learn how to work with cPanel, you’re ready to get started!