With the intention of building out your website, you may find yourself in a position of looking for a web developer for your business. You might have some questions regarding the technologies that he/she knows.
After researching some popular technologies and platforms, WordPress keeps appearing in multiple searches.
So, do web developers use WordPress?
A significant number of professional web developers use WordPress for web development. As WordPress powers nearly 28.9% of web, the demand for developers with this skillset has remained consistent over the last 10 years.
The WordPress platform is renown for its simple-to-use content management systems capabilities. Clients want to manage their site content on a platform with a good reputation, so the ability to use a CMS like this also drives the market for WordPress developers.
Here is the market share percentage between the top 5 website builders:
This relative comparison really shows WordPress’s dominance.
We’re only really scratching the surface here. Let’s explore other key points about WordPress.
While it can’t be denied that WordPress has remained supreme in its reign of client content management systems. However, a popular platform doesn’t always equate to the best option out there. So, is WordPress good for building websites?
WordPress provides an adequate website builder for those looking for a reliable experience that can also provide great customization. Due to its popularity, it provides a very solid infrastructure with great built-in security.
It’s a platform that is very familiar to a lot of the web developer population. Website owners have access to a wide range of potential hires to work on their WordPress products.
It is a staple of building websites for a wide range of use cases including:
Perhaps one of WordPress’s most appealing aspects is its huge ecosystem of plugins and features.
A plugin can be found for pretty much any piece of functionality desired from a website owner.
The sheer amount of options available is unrivaled by any other website platform. Due to this comprehensive ecosystem of plugins, many find this the most compelling reason to create websites on WordPress.
The market for plugins is open-source meaning that anyone can create plugins or themes to enhance a site’s functionality.
Many of these plugins feature free and premium tiers. This results in a free experience that can provide most of the functionality needed by a website.
From this point, if a website creator needs a more advanced feature of the plugin they can opt-in for a premium version, usually for a reasonable price. In some cases, a free tier of a plugin can act as a preview for what the premium tier’s capabilities can deliver.
Some of these plugins deal with:
Installing plugins like these will provide a layer of abstraction of which you can use functionality that you previously might have needed a web developer for.
While I have alluded to the accessibility of a WordPress installation, how exactly does that work?
Well, it has a reasonable intuitive interface of which a website owner can interact with. It’s not as simple as dragging and dropping blocks of functionality, however, it is relatively straightforward to navigate.
A huge benefit is the ability of website owners to make changes by themselves. By simply logging into a WordPress dashboard, plenty of settings can be tweaked without the use of a web developer.
Instead of paying an hourly market rate for a developer to update the website, non-technical website owners still have plenty of control in dictating fundamental changes to their business or product.
While WordPress is indeed a very viable option to create websites with, it’s state in modern web development is not totally without fault.
WordPress as a technology platform is coming up to 10 years old. As a result, it is no longer powered by some of the latest excitements and innovations in web technologies.
Ultimately, WordPress as a website builder produces a static website. This type of website is somewhat dated compared to the technology powering the latest web applications.
What WordPress as a website builder lacks, is the ability to produce cutting edge web applications. Why does this matter? Well, there are a huge amount of benefits to web applications that you check out here.
But perhaps the most noticeable difference is that the static websites that WordPress produces have noticeably long loading times. Whereas, platforms that produce modern web applications are very snappy with minimal delay when navigating between pages.
Web applications are a type of web sites that behave like native apps but function inside the browser. If deciding to build your website on WordPress you may not be reaching the full potential of what your website can achieve.
Site speed a huge factor in a user’s experience – even the smallest bit of latency can cause users to leave a web page.
While WordPress sites can be optimized for speed for things such as image optimization it is still at a disadvantage when compared to the website that uses the latest web technologies.
When it comes to Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), Google puts a lot of weight on the user experience, now more than ever they will cherry-pick results based on a site’s speed.
While this is only one of the factors that can decide what position your website is in a search engine, it still plays a big role. Let’s say a user comes to your website through a search engine ( an unoptimized WordPress installation).
Due to the initial slow loading speed, this user gets fed up and clicks the back button. Having had an undesirable experience – they select a different result from the search engine.
Google has watched this user’s process every step of the way and thinks that your site is not what they were looking for (even if it was!). If this happens frequently to a lot of your potential visitors they are going to take this into consideration and drop your sites position in the rankings.
This is indeed harsh but at the end of the day, Google is looking to provide its user’s with the best possible content.
If a user is bouncing from your site immediately because of poor loading times – Google will not be able to differentiate this from the user finding irrelevant content to their search engine.
Don’t get me wrong, WordPress sites can be fully optimized to avoid this. However, because of the huge reliance on plugins from an opensource market, the chances of unoptimized plugins slowing down your website is actually quite high.
This is where website owners and creators will need to look for web developers that are using more modern technologies to develop their website.
Let’s examine some other building tools that developers use.
While WordPress is undoubtedly a tool that a lot of web developers are proficient in, for highly skilled developers, WordPress is just one of the many tools that they can utilize for building high functioning modern websites.
I wanted to investigate just what other technologies web developers use to build websites. Here are the results I found for the leading website builder technologies on the web.
This breakdown is how the top web building technologies compare across the whole web:
Here are main web builders used broken down by category:
Drag and Drop:
Overall, there is nothing wrong with looking to WordPress to achieve your site-building goals. Is it going to provide you with a website that uses the latest in web tech?
Well, no but this was never its primary focus. Its a mature platform and if it uses the latest tech of the day then it might not be as reliable and secure with a huge list of plugins.
Modern web developers are primarily focused on building web applications – this is now the status quo of the modern web.
If you want to provide your users with the best experience possible then you should really aim at creating a web experience like this. Web applications will inevitably provide more meaningful interaction with your users when compared to WordPress instance.