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Futures, Gareth Case, SEO, Social Media, Web

WordPress – The App Store for Web Developers

Web development has come a long, long way in the past few years. I have paid agencies anything from £10-£15K for websites in the past but these days in my opinion are numbered. Let me explain why.

I remember in the late 90’s using FrontPage, Microsoft’s ‘attempt’ at a web development tool. Whilst it never set the world alight, it did, at the time serve a purpose. Then came Dreamweaver and Flash, tools that were relatively easy to use as designer or developer and ones that offered rich, multimedia end-user experiences. These experiences however often came with a hefty price tag. And companies with no in-house skills were often forced to pay top whack for web development.

The industry started to move around 2004/5. Web hosting companies started offering ‘do it yourself’ style website. In my opinion these were and still are today, only of any use to small companies that need some kind of online presence. Adobe then launched GoLive – A program that promised slick integration with InDesign and PhotoShop. I built a website using GoLive and it was OK, but was never going to win awards. They just didn’t get it quite right, for a number of reasons, leading to their acquisition of Macromedia, and therefore, Dreamweaver.

What the industry was crying out for was a WYSIWYG web design tool. Apple launched iWeb and again, I created a couple of very nice looking sites, but guess what, the back-end was awful. Complex SEO led to poor page ranking. It’s fine for personal websites but not for business.

Which brings us nicely into 2011. What we have with WordPress is an amazingly powerful, flexible content management system (CMS). So good that thousands of developers have created and shared more than 25,000 plugins, most of which are free to use, saving developers hours of work, and clients £000’s. There are plugins for everything from slideshows and social media sharing through to enhanced security and SEO optimisation tools.

I have been playing around with WordPress for about a month and have been blown away. If you’re a marketing professional with some HTML skills and the ability to use PhotoShop then you can create some very professional, fully functioned sites with not a great deal of effort.

I will be posting my latest creation on here before the new year, so watch this space.

Please follow me on Twitter for my latest updates

 

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About garethcase

Gareth Case has more than 12 years experience of marketing in the B2B technology space and has held senior marketing roles at Intermec Technologies, Arc Solutions, Viglen, Athona and now ONI and has experience of working throughout EMEA, North America and APAC. His broad understanding of the full marketing mix combined with a diverse skill set has contributed to the success and growth of his previous employers. Gareth has proven, successful experience in the following marketing disciplines: Offline: Marketing Strategy, Team Leadership, Direct Mail, Campaign Management, Telemarketing, Print Production, Public Relations, Copywriting, Budget Management, Graphic Design, Collateral Design, Presenting. Online: Website Design, Content Management, iPad Toolkits, Social Media, PPC, SEO, Analytics, CRM, E-Marketing, Video. Gareth has experience of working across many vertical markets including Healthcare, Local Government, Education, Finance, Insurance, Manufacturing, Logistics, Retail, Media, Not for Profit and Legal. He has started this blog ‘Inside a Marketing Mind’ to share his experiences and promote debate around the latest marketing innovations. Follow Gareth on Twitter here – http://twitter.com/gareth_case and subscribe to the blog for all the latest updates. For a more detailed synopsis of Gareth’s skills and experience, please visit his blog or LinkedIn page

Discussion

2 thoughts on “WordPress – The App Store for Web Developers

  1. WordPress is a very good platform for a CMS site, and I think it’s very intuitive for businesses who aren’t that web savvy. I’ve also worked with Joomla and Drupal which are very good open source systems as well. All three in my opinion are worth using, but each is based on the level of back-end skills of the person using them. If you want simple, I’d say WordPress; Joomla! would be for moderate users; and Drupal for a more complex platform.

    Posted by Jason Vosburgh | October 31, 2011, 4:59 pm
  2. What has been extraordinary is to watch an open source solution like WordPress triumph over the thousands of CMS’s created by independent web consultancies, as they each battle to have their offering accepted as the best.

    The open source model of development has given several CMS’s advantage over their paid-for rivals. But it seems to me that, for most projects, WordPress leads the way over Joomla, Drupal and others because of its SEO strengths:

    WordPress has evolved from a blogging platform. Google *loves* blogs (and news) more than the static brochure sites of years ago. WP works hand-in-glove with the Google crawlers on update services, dynamic sitemaps, tags and numerous other criteria of importance for the Google algorithm. This alone means that a WordPress site can expect higher listings in Google, much quicker, than a competing site on a different CMS. (especially a Microsoft one – surprise surprise!)

    This strength is enhanced further by having so many thousand developers working on tweaks and enhancements (updates and plugins), and themes (plugin designs), all the time. These free add-ons make it easy for anyone with enough know-how to create a fully-functioning, Google-indexed website in minutes. So its little wonder there are so many “WordPress for Dummies” books now in WHSmith and traditional web consultants are scratching their heads about what to do with their limited-function CMS offerings, and how to justify the money they spent building them.

    Posted by Tim Brocklehurst (@timbrock) | November 1, 2011, 12:31 am

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