…that is the question – that I get asked most often!!!

As a designer I usually get asked by prospective clients and fellow networkers “should I have a WordPress website?”.

Ah, if only life were that simple!

In my opinion, having only one option for building your website isn’t an option because it’s not the platform that should be your first question. It’s like deciding on the car you want without first figuring out what you need it for – e.g. although I would love a 2 seat sports car, it’s not the ideal for taking two children to school!

So, your first question should be:

What is my website for?

This is THE most important part of getting a website that is fit for purpose. If you don’t start here then you will most likely waste lots of money on a bespoke, all-singing all-dancing website that you can’t look after yourself when all you really needed was a fantastic looking web presence. Check out my earlier post all about the First Steps to a New Website for more on this – it’s ‘back to basics’ stuff but includes a couple of steps that most people so often overlook.

So, get away from your computer and think about what you actually want your website to do – and also think about whether you want to be the one who does the design and/or updating in future. The answers to these questions will give you a really great place to start and will help you answer your initial question “should I have a WordPress website?”.

Once you know what you need your website to do, now and a few months or years in to the future, you can decide whether or not WordPress is the platform for you.

And here are some more pointers to help you decide…

Use WordPress if you:

  • want a fully customised website
  • know that blogging is your main focus or one of your main income streams
  • want to add lots of user functionality (like a member area, online bookings, online courses, etc.)
  • know your site needs the ability to grow in any direction – and fast!
  • like to build websites and work things out from scratch
  • need your website to integrate with lots of different plugins

Use a website builder (like my favourite, Create.net) if you:

  • need a simple online presence
  • want everything in one place
  • want to sell stuff (but still keep it simple)
  • need a basic calendar of events
  • are happy with standard templates
  • don’t want to code but still happy to manage your site yourself

Now, each of the items on the lists above are separate points and my advice to my clients on the platform they start with is based on the answers they give to each point. It is only by really knowing what a client wants in detail that I can give my honest opinion of the platform that is best for them. And as an example, today I met with two prospective clients – one who definitely needs a WordPress site and one who definitely doesn’t…

75% of my existing clients DON’T use WordPress because their needs are comfortably met with a simple website builder website. But the good news for them is that if at any time in the future they need functionality that this online builder doesn’t offer and want to swap over to WordPress they can. It takes a bit of work but nothing in the online world is ever set in stone!

So, if you are still undecided or in a pickle, then GIVE ME A CALL! I offer a free website review and analysis service based on what I’ve listed above, my real-world experience and speaking to you – yes, that’s the old-fashioned way of calling or meeting in person. I’d love to make sure you get the right website solution for your business without being bullied into the stuff you really don’t need (well, yet anyway).

Until next time,

Web Goddess

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