Wordpress Web Developer at Cream Soda Media adding code to build a website.

What is WordPress? Your Quick Guide

What is WordPress all about?

WordPress Websites stand out as one of the most popular and powerful platforms available in the vast landscape of website creation and management.

WordPress is the worlds leading content management system and whether you’re a blogger, small business owner, or a large enterprise, understanding what WordPress is and how it works is crucial in today’s digital world.

In this quick 5min guide, written by a geek in our Web Design & Digital Marketing Agency Surrey house, we will explore the ins and outs of WordPress Design, covering its origins, features, benefits, and how it has revolutionised the way websites are built and managed.

Who Chooses WordPress?

WordPress powers 31.9% of all websites, boasting a content management system market share of 59.4%.

If you’ve been in content development or marketing for some time, you’re likely aware of the multitude of options available for web design and blogging platforms.

Choosing the right one can be a daunting task, given the numerous paid and free alternatives.

Over the past 15 years, blogging and web design have seen remarkable growth, as reflected in the following statistics:

  • 400 million people view 24 billion pages hosted by WordPress every month.
  • Every month, 70 million new posts and 47 million comments are generated.
  • WordPress blogs are available in over 120 languages, including Spanish and Dutch.
  • Prominent users of WordPress include CNN, TED, UPS, and CBS Radio.

Moreover, Google Trends data indicates that WordPress’s popularity has surpassed that of Blogger, SharePoint, and Drupal over time.

Beyond blogging, WordPress excels in building social networks, fully functional intranets, and online business card themes.

With its wide array of tools, plugins, and flexible features, WordPress is arguably the premier publishing platform for business web design. 

What Are The Origins of WordPress

WordPress has come a long way since its inception.

It all began in 2001 when French programmer Michel Valdrighi launched B2-Cafelog, a blogging platform built with PHP and MySQL.

Two years later, the development was taken over by Mike Little and Matt Mullenweg, who eventually co-founded the WordPress platform.

In May 2003, WordPress 0.7 was introduced, followed by subsequent updates that introduced features like theme systems, persistent caching, and improved widgets.

By 2016, WordPress 4.5 (Coleman) had incorporated inline links, new formatting shortcuts, and responsive previews in the Customiser functions.

Since its initial release, WordPress has experienced consistent growth for good reasons.

What are the Key Features of WordPress

  • User-Friendly Interface: WordPress provides an intuitive dashboard that allows users to easily create and update web pages, blog posts, and media content

    WordPress eliminates the need to master complex technologies like HTML, CSS, and PHP.

  • Themes and Templates: With thousands of free and premium themes available, WordPress enables users to customise the website and feel of their websites to match their unique brand or style.

  • Plugin Extensibility: WordPress boasts a vast library of plugins, offering endless possibilities for adding functionality and features to a website without requiring extensive coding knowledge.

  • SEO-Friendly: WordPress is inherently optimized for search engines, making it easier for websites built on the platform to rank well in search engine results.

  • Mobile Responsiveness: In an increasingly mobile-centric world, WordPress ensures that websites built on the platform are responsive and compatible with different devices and screen sizes

What are the Benefits of Using WordPress

  • Flexibility and Scalability: WordPress caters to a wide range of websites, from personal blogs to e-commerce stores, and can effortlessly scale to accommodate increasing traffic and content requirements.

  • Cost-Effective: WordPress is an open-source platform, meaning it’s free to download and use. While premium themes and plugins may come at a cost, the overall expense of building and maintaining a WordPress website is significantly lower compared to custom development.

  • Active Community Support: The WordPress community is vibrant and supportive, offering extensive documentation, forums, and resources to assist users with any questions or challenges they may encounter.

  • SEO Advantages: WordPress’s clean code and SEO-friendly features provide a solid foundation for implementing search engine optimisation strategies to improve website visibility and organic traffic.

  • Regular Updates and Security: The WordPress core is continuously updated to enhance performance, fix bugs, and address security vulnerabilities, ensuring websites remain secure and up to date.

Workers at a WordPress Design agency in Surrey study html code on a computer in the office

What can WordPress Be Used For?

  • Blogging: WordPress’s origins lie in blogging, and it remains an excellent platform for bloggers of all levels. Its intuitive editor, categorisation options, and commenting system make it a favorite among content creators.

  • E-Commerce: With plugins like WooCommerce, WordPress enables users to build and manage online stores efficiently. It offers features like product listings, shopping carts, secure payment gateways, and inventory management.

  • Business Websites: Many small and medium-sized UK businesses utilise WordPress for their official websites. Its ease of use, flexibility, and integration capabilities with customer relationship management (CRM) systems make it an ideal choice. 

  • Portfolio Websites: WordPress’s customisable themes and multimedia support make it a perfect fit for creative professionals looking to showcase their work through an online portfolio.

What Is WordPress?

WordPress has evolved from a humble blogging platform to a versatile content management system that powers millions of websites worldwide.

Its user-friendly interface, extensive theme and plugin ecosystem, and active community support have made it the go-to choice for individuals and businesses looking to establish a strong online presence.

Whether you’re a blogger, an e-commerce entrepreneur, or a corporate entity, WordPress offers the tools and features necessary to create stunning websites tailored to your specific needs.

Embrace the power of WordPress and unlock a world of possibilities in the realm of web development and management.

  • Notes:

Matt Mullenweg: Matt Mullenweg is a software developer and entrepreneur. He is best known as the co-founder of WordPress and the founder of Automattic, the company behind and other web-related services. Mullenweg was born in 1984 in Houston, Texas. He became involved with blogging software when he was a teenager and contributed to the development of b2/cafelog, a blogging platform. When the development of b2/cafelog ceased, Mullenweg and Mike Little decided to create a new fork of the software, which eventually became WordPress. Mullenweg has played a crucial role in leading the open-source WordPress project and guiding its growth into the robust content management system it is today.

Mike Little: Mike Little is a British web developer and entrepreneur. He is known for his involvement in the early development of WordPress. Little and Mullenweg collaborated on creating the fork of b2/cafelog, which marked the beginning of the WordPress project. Little’s expertise in web development and coding skills were instrumental in shaping the early stages of WordPress. While Mullenweg has taken on a more prominent role in the WordPress community and industry, Little’s contributions to the project’s inception are widely recognized.

Together, Matt Mullenweg and Mike Little laid the foundation for WordPress, enabling it to grow from a simple blogging platform to a full-fledged content management system that powers millions of websites around the world. Their collaboration and dedication to open-source principles have made WordPress accessible and versatile for users of all backgrounds and technical expertise.

Picture of Michelle Goodisson
Michelle Goodisson

Professional and dedicated all-round digital marketeer with 20 years experience in b2b and b2c marketing. Covering retail buying, product development, brand management, digital marketing, licensing, event management, PR & sponsorship.

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