WordPress is a free and open-source content management system used for creating websites and dedicated blog sites. It is specifically a web-based platform for managing various backend and frontend functions. These backend functions include creating and uploading content, database management, user accounts and permissions, and website configurations. The frontend functions center on website design and layout.
There are about 60 million websites that use WordPress. Around 40 percent of the top 10 million websites in the world are dependent on this platform. It is the most popular content management system in the world compared to Drupal and Joomla. This wide usage stems from its advantages that center on convenience. However, despite its ease of use relative to other options, it also has its fair share of limitations and disadvantages.
Why Should You Use WordPress: Strengths, Benefits, and Advantages of WordPress
1. Requires Minimal Expertise in Coding
One of the advantages of WordPress is its intuitive and easy-to-use user interface. Developing a website using this platform does not require advanced skills and knowledge in HTML and CSS and server-side scripting languages such as PHP. Most website hosting service providers also support quick installation or one-click installs. There is also an abundance of resource materials online related to the different facets of WordPress development.
2. Extensive Library of Plugins and Themes
Another remarkable selling point or strength of WordPress is its extensive library of plugins and themes. Take note that Joomla and Drupal also have sizeable libraries but their size is not as big as WordPress. Plugins are like apps that extend the features of a content management system and the functionalities of a website. They promote customizability and modularity while minimizing the need for coding intended website features and functionalities.
3. Community of Enthusiasts and Developers
Strong support is another notable advantage of WordPress. There is an abundance of free and paid resources available online dedicated to the ins and outs of website development using this platform. Websites such as WPBeginner cater to entry-level users. Most plugin and theme developers also provide knowledgebase support through dedicated customer service, online forums, documentation or handbooks, and codex, among others.
4. Flexible CMS for Different Types of Websites
This content management system was developed for blogging and online publishing. However, over the years, it has evolved to become a platform suited for different types of websites. These include static websites, electronic commerce or online storefronts, forums and membership sites, and portfolios and media galleries, among others. A developer can either depend on plugins and themes or hard-code features or functionalities from the ground up.
5. Localization and Multi-Language Support
Another advantage of WordPress is that it is available in more than 53 languages. The interface of the platform can be changed to accommodate a particular language preference. Furthermore, although this content management system does not directly support the creation of a multilingual website out of the box, there are plugins available to create a multi-language website. Popular themes and plugins are also available in different languages
6. Support for Search Engine Optimization
It has basic features for search engine optimization. These include integrated link management, permalink structure, assignment of multiple categories and tags to each post, and trackbacks and pingbacks. There are third-party plugins such as Yoast SEO, The SEO Framework, and Rank Math that extend the search engine optimization features of WordPress. These include search engine indexing, robot exclusions, and metadata management.
Why You Should Avoid WordPress: Issues, Limitations, and Disadvantages of WordPress
1. Cluttered Plugins and Themes Ecosystem
There are reputable individuals and organizations dedicated to developing high-quality plugins and themes for WordPress. But the free and open-source nature of this platform also translates to a bloated plugin and theme ecosystem. There are no strict standards or compliance monitoring. Users would need to read through the reviews and ratings. Some instances would require a user to undergo a trial-and-error process to test each plugin or theme.
2. Potential Issues With Compatibility
Official support from WordPress and specific plugins and themes remains relatively dependable as evident from consistent updates. There are still cases in which outdated plugins or themes would not work with an updated WordPress version. Some developers would fail to align their updates with WordPress updates. Others have abandoned their projects. Incompatible plugins or themes can disable some features and affect website performance.
3. Susceptibility to Slow-Loading Websites
Another disadvantage of WordPress is its susceptibility to producing websites that run slow. This can come from using several plugins and an intricate theme that can overload the servers of the web host. The same is true for using low-quality and poorly coded plugins and themes. Take note that it also takes more time to execute PHP files than static HTML. This means that even static websites developed using this platform are inherently slower.
4. Built For Simpler and Outdated Architectures
The more pressing problem of WordPress is that it is made with the notion that a website will run on a single server with a single filesystem. More developers are leaning toward micro-service and multi-node or multi-filesystem web architectures due to their flexibility and scalability. It is also worth mentioning that this platform is also written in PHP. Other developers believe that there are other better-performing languages such as Phyton.
5. Security and Vulnerability Risks and Concerns
WordPress is secure by default. Developers provide regular updates to resolve security issues and improve overall performance. But security is also dependent on users or website developers. There have been numerous cases of security breaches involving websites developed using this platform due to low-level access controls and poor website configurations. Plugins and themes from untrusted developers can also come with different types of malware.
6. Might Not Be Suited For High-Performing Sites
Even though it provides a flexible platform for developing different websites, the fact remains that most of its features are for blogging. The user interface still behaves like a blogging platform and for managing blog content. Concerns over plugin and theme compatibilities, slowdowns and downtime, maintenance frequencies, and security also make this platform unsuitable for running high-performance websites with a high degree of user interaction.
In a Nutshell: Advantages and Disadvantages of WordPress for Web Development
The central advantage of WordPress is that it is free and has an easy-to-use user interface. The availability of plugins and access to resources online also makes it ideal for web developers with no extensive skills in coding and web design. These strengths make this platform suitable for simple and even some complicated websites. However, for websites that are highly interactive and have large-sized on-demand content, WordPress might not be the most suitable option.