These days you have to be online. No matter what your business is about, big or small, having a website can greatly increase/expand your market, increase customer loyalty and improve your brand image. Everyone is constantly searching online for restaurants, lawyers, photographers, boutiques, wedding planners, spas, hair salons, hardware stores, construction companies…etc, etc.
If you could get a piece of that traffic your small business could potentially become successful or more successful then it already is. Plus, a website will make it easy for current customers to get in touch with you again for future projects/products. There is no way around it – online presence is crucial to any business’ success.
What is WordPress?
There is no easy answer to this question, but basically WordPress is a system that you can install onto your server and it will connect with a database and act as a Content Management System (CMS). Then you to easily add new designs via themes, plugins and widgets. It’s so easy even the least tech saavy person can learn how to do it.
Basically WordPress takes out the necessity of paying insane amounts of money for a super web developer/designer to create and maintain your small business website. Rather, you can have full control over the look and way your site works without having to touch a single line of code (of course for some complex customizations you may have to bring in a developer to tweak your site a bit – but for the most part you do not)
5 Reasons To Use WordPress For Your Business
Here at WPExplorer we love WordPress and there are many good reasons why. Below are some of the main reasons why you should be considering WordPress for your business site.
One of the hardest things about getting a small business started is generating the necessary cash to pay for all the important things – trademarks, patents, work force, website…etc (depends on your business – but basically most small business do not have a lot of money to start with). Which is why paying for an expensive web designer/developer can be a problem.
To get started with WordPress you first need to purchase a domain name (a yearly fee) and good hosting (a monthly or yearly fee depending on how you want to be billed). If you have the money for it we love WP Engine Managed WordPress hosting. It’s the hosting we trust for our website and they’ve kept our sites fist & secure for years. If you want to start with a more affordable host, Bluehost offers a special deal to WPExplore readers so you can get your hosting plus a free domain name for just $2.95/mo.
With WordPress you can purchase a really nice premium theme for less than $60. Most of these premium themes come with detailed documentation as well as support from the theme developer (so if you need a bit of help you can always ask them). We highly recommend the Total Drag & Drop WordPress theme since it’s well coded, beautifully styled and super flexible. It’s also bundled with four premium plugins – Visual Composer, Templatera, Slider Revolution and the Layer Slider.
So, for less than $100 this year you can have good hosting and a great theme to build your website with. Now that’s a deal!
WordPress has a very easy to use and intuitive admin panel that will allow you to easily create pages and make changes to your site in a WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) manner. This means that you or your employees can easily take on the website maintenance as part of their regular jobs as opposed to having to hire a full time web developer. Plus, many premium WordPress themes come with support for the WordPress Customizer that allows you to do things such as changing the site’s colors, editing the navigation bars and uploading a logo without having to mess with any of the code.
One of the things that makes WordPress truly unique is that you can install all kinds of different plugins that will give your site even more capabilities. And many of the plugins out there are FREE. You can install a plugin to improve your search engine optimization, to add a jquery featured slider to your homepage and even install plugins which will integrate eCommerce functions such as Google Checkout and Authorize net.
The only caveat is that you should only download and install plugins from trusted sources. For reputable and secure plugins we recommend the free plugins from WordPress.org as well as the premium plugins from CodeCanyon (with most of the premium options including 6 months of premium support from the plugin authors).
WordPress is very Search Engine Friendly “out-of-the-box”. This means that you can potentially start showing up in search engine results and generating some extra customers via the internet. Of course SEO isn’t as easy as installing a platform (such as WordPress) and then magically appearing as number 1 for a specific term. However, WordPress does provide you with a solid framework to get you started on track.
If you want more there are some great plugins and themes out there (such as Total) that can really help your on-page-seo and get you ranking quicker. One of the number one plugins for SEO is Yoast SEO, and you can use our guide to better WordPress SEO for tips on getting started with the plugin.
If by any chance you have a problem setting up your WordPress-powered business site, don’t worry. It is very easy to find support and/or developers that can help you. For most basic problems you can probably do a quick online search and find an answer to your problem on a forum or blog.
If you are having trouble you can always contact a WordPress expert and see if they are available for a quick job. We recommend Upwork and WPLift Support if you have something small you need tweaked. But you can also see our roundup of the best WordPress maintenance services if you need more regular help.
Getting your site up as soon as possible can help give you a heads start on your competitors, spread the word about your business and more importantly generate more customers. Below is a summary of the quick steps to get started with WordPress.
- Get a host – You need to buy a domain and a hosting service for your site, we recommend WP Engine or Bluehost for new WordPress users.
- Install WordPress on your web server – If you choose managed WordPress hosting (like WP Engine) you don’t have to do anything since WordPress will be pre-installed for you. On shared hosting plans (like Bluehost) you just need to use their one-click WordPress installation to get setup in a matter of minutes.
- Learn about WordPress – I suggest you read a bit about WordPress so you can see what it is all about and how to use it. WP101 is a great resource as they have tons of easy to follow and up to date tutorials you can follow along with.
- Download & Install a Theme – Themes define the look and function of your site, so checkout our picks for the best business WordPress Themes to find one that suits the needs of your company. Once you get the one you like upload it via your WordPress admin panel or via FTP and customize it to your needs.
- Spread The Word – Now that you have a website for your small business tell everyone about it! Share you site on social media, leave comments on other well-know site to gain organic backlinks and add your website to your business cards & email signature.
Hopefully we’ve been able to help you get your WordPress site setup, and if you have any questions just leave us a comment below!