For those who have never had their own site before, the whole process can be overwhelming. There are so many terms flung around that web developers and designers use every day which are incomprehensible to non technical people. One of those is WordPress. What exactly is it?
Well it is the most popular Content Management Site (CMS for short – another acronym!) in the world. In the ‘old days’ of the 90’s there were a ton of different CMS systems being used, but they all gradually faded, except WordPress . The main reason for this is ease of use. The developers famously declared it took 5 minutes to install and setup. The tagline for this statement should read ‘if you know what you’re doing’, but nevertheless , it is basically true. Many shared hosting sites have an automatic install option which can get you up and running with a basic WordPress install in 5 minutes.
It is also reasonably user friendly in the ‘back end’ , or the admin section. There are some quirks, and it can be incredibly frustrating to do certain things, but it is also easy to make a site look professional. And for developers, with a bit of work it is possible to customise a WordPress site to do almost anything.
So why don’t all sites use WordPress if it’s that good? Well, for blogs, e-commerce sites, small business sites and info sites, WordPress is indeed king. But if you want to do something a little off piste, it is not so easy and can get slow quite quickly. A good example is a site I did for a friend a few years back, it was for an archery club, and he wanted to be able to record all the scores people entered at shoots, and for the website to automatically calculate their handicap and store it in a database . Could you do this in WordPress? Probably , but it wouldn’t be easy. There are far easier and more elegant frameworks for this sort of thing. Enter Laravel. I’ll put up a post about this next .