Ep 83 | Why you Shouldn't Use WordPress
WordPress is a great tool But it can be overwhelming if you don't understand what you're getting yourself into and how to maximize it. I'm sharing with you reasons why you may NOT want to use WordPress for your website.
In this episode you'll learn:
→ the difference between WordPress.com and WordPress.org
→ how understanding your goals can help you choose your platform.
→ how your budget comes into play with your decision.
Want to skip ahead? Here are some key takeaways:
[1:58] WordPress.com and WordPress.org are different. WordPress.com is the paid version that has limited functionality and hosts your website for you. WordPress.org is the free version that is open source and has all sorts of customization options.
[3:40] Understand your goals. If you don't know where you're going and what you need your website to be then starting simple might be a better option for you. WordPress can get complicated really quickly if you don't know exactly what you want.
[5:22] Pay attention to your budget. While the platform itself is free, you will have to play with additional plugins to get the functionality you want. This can get away from you quickly so know what you need before you make your platform decision.
[7:37] Pay attention to your timeline. When do you need to have your website up and running? If you need to have something up quickly WordPress might not be the option for you.
[9:38] If you need something more complex are you ready to hire it out to someone? Really be clear on what you need and how it plays in to your overall business goals.
[9:50] Make sure your email automations are ready to go so you can promote while relaxing with your family. These emails are going to go out to your list over the course of Thanksgiving week and hit hard on Giving Tuesday. You want people to plan for their dollars so they have some set aside just for you.
9 Ways for Non-Profits to Raise Money Online
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[INTRO] Hey everyone, Sami here, your host of the Digital Marketing Therapy podcast. Thank you so much for joining me today. And I want to talk a little bit about WordPress. We talk a lot about WordPress on this podcast. And that is my platform of choice. It is really what we recommend for all of our clients and kind of what we use for all of our clients. But I also understand that it's not always the easiest to get started with. So today, I'm going to talk about reasons why we maybe would steer somebody away from WordPress, and why it might not be the right fit for you. So that's what we're going to talk about today in this episode, so I hope you enjoy it.
But before we get into it, this episode is brought to you by our WordPress templates. So we have templated websites that you can choose from. And then we'll go ahead and set up your website for you, upload Divi upload the templates, upload your colors, your fonts, and all you have to do is go in and put in your copy and your images. So you can have a four-page website on WordPress all done ready to go in five days, just five days. How cool is that? So definitely something to think about as you listen to this episode. But you can find them all at https://www.thefirstclick.net/templates. Check them out, let me know what you think. But for now, let's get into the episode.
[CANNED INTRODUCTION] You're listening to the Digital Marketing Therapy Podcast. I'm your host, Sami Bedell-Mulhern. And each week, I bring you tips from myself and other experts, as well as hot seats with small business owners and entrepreneurs to demystify digital marketing and get you on your way to generating more leads and growing your business.
[BODY] So before we get into this, you know if WordPress is the right platform for you, and why maybe it's not. I want to make sure we differentiate between wordpress.com and wordpress.org. So the website platform that we build all of ours on is wordpress.org. That is the WordPress itself is free, right. When wordpress.org itself is free. It's an open source platform, anybody can create anything for that part of it is free. That's the one that has all the functionality that you could ever imagine.
WordPress.com is a paid platform and operates a little bit similarly to like how Squarespace or Wix or Weebly might operate. They handle the hosting and all of that for you. So you do pay them a monthly fee. So I just want to make sure that when we're talking about why maybe WordPress isn't the right tool for you, in this episode, we are talking specifically about wordpress.org, the free version of WordPress.
Okay, I wanted to make sure that was clear, I can link up information to that I think we've done some other blog post or podcast episodes on that. So I will link that up. So that you have that information in the show notes. But that's just a very important distinction that I want to make sure you are aware of. So like I mentioned, wordpress.org is open source. And so there are a lot of developers that are out there creating themes, creating builders, creating plugins, like all of the things right. Like if you have an e commerce store, then you might use WooCommerce, which is a plugin and then has a whole nother set of things.
So one of the reasons why WordPress might not be the right fit for you is because if you aren't really sure about where you're going, and what you need your website to do, you can very easily go down a rabbit hole of all of the different options that are out there for you. And if you don't really know exactly what you're looking for, you can waste a lot of time and energy and money trying to figure out which pieces you want to put into WordPress website. So the plugins are really something that a lot of people will talk about as major cons for WordPress, and why you might not want to do it. If you are really clear in what you want, what you need, and you feel, you know, very aligned with that, then by all means, it could be a great option. And and the other thing that I'll say is we tend to try to do too much all at once, instead of just making it simple.
So like the templates that I talked about earlier, you know, they're four pages. We don't need to have these crazy robust websites. So get what you need to get done. Think about the minimum amount of things that you need to get out there to have a website that's up and functioning, knowing you can always add to it as you go. So if you don't know what you need your website to do, then maybe WordPress isn't the right thing. Maybe just getting a simple page up on a different platform would be better.
I don't mean to say that you have to know like forever and ever and ever, like, we're in the process of redoing our websites and updating the messaging and cleaning things up right now. And we do that at least once a year, if not multiple times a year. I'm not saying we redo the entire website. But we're tweaking, refining and making sure that everything is up to date for what we need it to be.
So the next reason why WordPress might not be for you is if you again, if you don't know what your goals are, and you don't have a budget in place, or how your what and how your website fits into that, whether that's in a marketing budget, a tech budget, whatever that looks like for you. Yes, WordPress itself is free. But pretty much all of the plugins that will not all a lot of the plugins that you're going to be utilizing, they'll have an additional cost.
So we love to use Divi, by Elegant Themes as our builder. And it has a cost associated with it. Also, even though WooCommerce, which is an e commerce platform itself is free, you typically have to pay for those integrations that you need, whether it be your credit card processor, whether it be your shipping, like how you, you know, automate shipping, it might even you know if you have an online course, all of those things, so really understanding the cost, because it can add up really quick with WordPress on a monthly or an annual basis.
Now, the plugins themselves individually are not that expensive. Some of them are, I think the most we've paid for one is like $199. But you really need to weigh all of that. So if you're not ready to do that, if you don't have a budget, if you're really trying to bootstrap, the nice thing about some of the other platforms is you know what your monthly cost is going to be. And that's typically what it is. The downside is you don't have as many integration opportunities. But you know, there's a lot that you can do with that. So, um, make sure you understand your budget, otherwise, WordPress can get out of hand real quick, and you could be paying for lots of things.
And what typically happens is, you'll start, you know, down the road, you'll add a thing here, you'll add a thing here, you'll add a thing here, so it doesn't all necessarily happen at once. But they're all most, I shouldn't say they're all unless you buy lifetime versions, most of the time, you're going to be paying for these on an annual basis. So really make sure that you're keeping track of that. So you don't all of a sudden get hit with a bill that you weren't expecting, and and throw your budget completely out of whack.
So plugins can add up. So if you're not staying on top of that, then WordPress might not be the best option for you.
The other thing that I'll say is timeliness. And if you're not very tech-savvy, if you haven't built a website before, then and you are in a time crunch, or you really need to get something up and running quickly, then it might not be that WordPress is right for you. Especially if you're trying to DIY it, it can be a little bit confusing. And like I said, you can go down the rabbit hole of all of the things and everybody you talk to is going to have their kind of tech stack of tools that they like to use. And it can be hard to understand, well, why should I use this? Or should I not use that and, and it just can be really confusing. So being really clear, I guess is the moral of this episode with WordPress. If you're not clear, and you're in a hurry, and you really need to get something up and running, another platform might be a good option for you. And and it might be a better way for you to get started.
Um, I really feel that just getting something up and running is better than having no website at all. And, you know, you might hear all sorts of things about WordPress, Squarespace, you know, Wix, Weebly, whatever. And how do they rank with SEO? How do they do with traffic? How do they do analytics, like you're gonna hear everybody's gonna have their own opinions about that. So don't get bogged down in that too much. Make sure you're just getting started getting things up and running. And if you've had a website for a while, and you're ready to transition or expand it, whether you're switching platforms, or you're just adding more features to your existing WordPress website, the same things apply that we're talking about here, right, like really making sure you're super clear on what it is that you want to accomplish with your website. What are your funding resources to be able to support that? Can you hire somebody out to do it.
And that's going to be kind of one of the last thing that I want to talk about here is if you're not experienced in building websites, you're probably going to at some point need to hire somebody to build out your WordPress site, to really get the most out of it to really maximize all the options to maximize their expertise. You know, when people are telling us about this is what I need our website to do. Because we build so many websites because we're in this industry, we know about the best plugins to use are the ones that we've had the most success with, or the ones that cost the least amount of money or even with the delay developer, they might have access to premium plugins that you get for free just because you had them build it. So you really want to keep that in mind. If you know paying a developer isn't something that you want to do, then WordPress might not might just be super frustrating for you and might not be what you want. And I don't say that because I'm trying to get your business. I've just seen so many people waste time and energy. And your time is your money, and you need to get something up. So just get something up so that you can start reaching out to customers and grow and expand and start reaching out to donors. And working with a developer can be a very frustrating experience. And it is for so many of our customers and clients. And it all really comes down to if you are not clear with what you want, then you're not going to end up with the result that you need. And it doesn't mean that you have to know I don't need to go into your website and think, Okay, I have to know exactly what I want to look like I have to know exactly the functionality that I want. But if you can be really clear in this is, you know, a year from now, I will be super excited if I have X amount of visitors or if I've made X amount of sales for my website, or if I have added 10 more monthly recurring donors, like just even understanding all of those things very specifically, you know, these are the events that we have coming up in the next couple of years that we know we're going to want to highlight. If you're working with a good developer, they can help you either say, Okay, well, yeah, what you're saying you'd be better off using this platform. Or they can say, Yep, I got it. These are all the things that we'll need to make that happen. And this is what the cost is going to be associated with it. So you don't need to know the tech that you need.
You just need to know exactly what you want website to do. So those are some reasons why WordPress might not be the right fit for you really think about it, think hard about it. It's not fun to switch platforms, but it's something that can be done. It's more about getting out there taking action and getting things moving.
So if you have any other questions about why maybe you should or shouldn't use WordPress, make sure to hit us up on Facebook or Instagram @thefirstclickmarketing. And I hope that you enjoyed this episode. I'd love to hear if there's any other topics that makes sense that you would love to hear about and learn more about that's always helpful to me to make sure we're providing value to you during these episodes. But subscribe wherever you listen and thank you so much for taking time out of your day to listen to me ramble about WordPress. We'll see in the next one.