What is WordPress?

What is WordPress?

“WordPress is a free and open-source content management system (CMS) based on PHP & MySQL. Features include a plugin architecture and a template system. It is most associated with blogging but supports other types of web content including more traditional mailing lists and forums, media galleries, and online stores.”

-Wikipedia

When explaining what WordPress was during its first 5 years was simple:  “It is a blogging system that can also be a CMS.” But today, it is a little more complicated.

More than one if four of the websites you visit today are powered by WordPress, actually 34% of websites use WordPress.  Originally designed to be a blogging system, today it can power a variety of websites such as Corporate, Business, Agency, Construction, Travel, Portfolio, Restaurant, Online Store, Showcase, and many more.  Utilizing a plugin architecture, extended capabilities can be added to the functionality of WordPress.  The theme architecture is used to build the front-end of the website, what we see when we visit the website.

WordPress powers websites we visit every day such as the official White House site, Rolling Stones Magazine, Microsoft Blog, The New Yorker, BBC America, The Official Star Wars Blog, MTV News, Sony Music, Variety, and many more.

The Advantages of WordPress:

  • Free and open source
  • Easy to Install
  • Flexible and Extendable
  • Extensive Community Support
  • Low Cost

The Disadvantages of WordPress:

  • Customization is hard to do
  • Basic knowledge  needed
  • Planning required
  • Constant updates required or site gets hacked
  • PHP is great at handling Content Management but not Theming

Some of the advantages of WordPress also can become disadvantages.  It extendability comes from plugins.  Many times you will find a massive amount of plugins installed in a WordPress site that is not even used.  Other plugins are installed and called on every page whether they are used on that page or not.  There are also poorly coded plugins.  These things cause a WordPress site to consume excessive resources. causing the pages of the website to load slowly.  At ProWeb.Agency (PW.A), we know which plugins to use and which not to use.  We built some functions into the theme itself, so it is only called when needed and uses minimal resources. Read more about plugins here.

PW.A recommends WordPress as the CMS for websites.  It handles data efficiently and has a great support base.  We do, however, recommend a different theme engine.  PHP is great at what it was designed for.  It was not designed to be a theme engine. Customizing the layout of a theme can be difficult and requires the ability to understand PHP code, as some themes are not fully documented.

Over the last few years, we have seen many different theme engines emerge for WordPress.  Other CMS software, such as Drupal, have incorporated template engines based on different frameworks.  These engines release the CMS of presenting the content to the front end and allow them to focus on what PHP does best. The template engine should utilize a framework that is efficient and optimized. Here at PW.A we use Timber, which integrates the Twig framework as the base of our theme engine.  Read more about Timber/Twig here.

When PW.A incorporates our theme engine into your WordPress site, customization is what we do.  Our framework makes most customizations via the WordPress admin dashboard. Other customizations are availalbe, but utilizing our engine, they are at a minimal cost.

With the required staging area, updates are applied in that environment and tested.  Once they pass testing, the updates are applied to the live site.

In designing your theme, our utilization of ACF (Advanced Custom Fields) not only optimizes the code itself but enables an intuitive admin interface.  Lowering the knowledge needed to administrate the site.

This is what ProWeb.Agency does.  Creates a theme for WordPress utilizing a framework that creates efficient and optimized themes.  The result is a customized WordPress site that uses minimal resources and is fast,  You can read more on optimizations here.

We offer a free consultation that can be utilized to assist you in planning your next WordPress site.  Click here to schedule your consultation today.