WordPress has long overcome the status of a blogging platform and is now a thriving, impressive network that supports a wide range of sites in a plethora of domains.
Moreover, with about 27% of the internet using the WordPress platform, there is no wonder that businesses started to notice its features. Among the most important, we can name its flexibility, power, and dynamism, which help create stunning websites and even eCommerce platforms. Not to mention, it’s free to use!
So, if you’re using or planning a WordPress site for your business, consider these tips.
#1: Select a Theme that Works for Your Business
One of the reasons WordPress is so popular all over the world is represented by the wide collection of themes (free and paid). Moreover, some themes are specifically designed for a certain type of businesses such as restaurants, fast-food delivery, architecture, photography, freelance design, eCommerce stores, and more.
So, if you don’t want to build a theme from scratch (which will imply hiring a developer), you have lots of choices. Just make sure you select a theme that works for your site.
Here are some criteria to follow:
- Responsive Design with the Full-width Setting – this way, the design will adapt according to the size of the screen it’s being viewed on.
- A Well-designed Home Page Header – most sites nowadays start with a Page Header containing a static image, a slider, or a video (with or without content on top). The image and text in this section should fit your business (these are editable), but it’s also about the position, correlation with the menus, and colors used.
- The Position of Elements – a nice-looking page is harmonious and attracts the eye, so make sure to choose a theme that uses white spaces to create a balance between elements.
- The Menu Bar – this is a crucial element on your page and site and should be easy to use, simple, and quick to find.
#2: Install & Edit the Theme
Since the theme is more like a template than a complete design, you will need to do some edits. These can be minimal, like just changing the images, colors, background, and text to fit your needs.
But they can also be a bit more in-depth, such as changing the position of menus, adding plugins for new functionalities, and even tweaking the code a bit.
Depending on the complexity of changes, you may want to employ the services of a developer. Still, most small changes can be performed using the back panel provided by the platform and theme options.
Even more, if you want to make the changes yourself, regardless of difficulty, it’s easy to take a website development course online where you have access to high-quality resources and teachers.
#3: Selecting Plugins and Third-Party Apps
The good thing about WordPress is that you can add plugins and apps to extend its powers and completely transform it into the site you need it to be.
On a side note, it’s best to choose a theme that fits your site’s purpose, since it will cut off your workload by at least half.
For instance, you could start with a plugin that ensures your site will remain standing even after a hostile encounter with malware, ransomware, DDoS attacks, and other malicious software that lurk in the shadows (for this, check out Sucuri).
Another plugin every business needs is a backup app that has your back when the implemented security measures fail (BackupBuddy can be a good choice).
The performance of a website in search engines is highly influenced by the loading speed, so make sure your pages load as quickly as possible using a plugin like W3 Total Cache.
Now, if your site is a presentation or a portfolio page, you may also need a contact form plugin (WPforms), an image gallery, and more. Still, if you’re planning on creating an online store, you’ll need the assistance of an eCommerce plugin such as WooCommerce.
#4: SEO Settings
Before you make any other steps, make sure the site is optimized for search engines. WordPress has a wide range of plugins for this area as well, so you can start the site off with basic knowledge (you may need specialized help later down the road).
Among the most popular SEO plugins, you’ll find Yoast SEO, Ultimate SEO, but there are others. Each of these plugins is designed to work with WordPress in implementing the best SEO techniques.
#5: Final Touches
This part varies from site to site and is highly subjective, which is why we’re not going to insist on it too much. The final touches may be about tweaking the design a little bit, adding a new plugin, making sure the contact information and USP (Unique Selling Proposition) are highly visible, and more.
You should also give the site a test run to see if people can navigate easily without any special help and if the pages are loading correctly on all devices. This step should be performed with people who haven’t been involved in the project (friends and family or a professional tester).
This way, the feedback you receive will be accurate. As you can see, it’s not difficult to work with WordPress, and almost anyone can put together a business presentation page with minimal technical knowledge. Still, for more advanced sites, we strongly recommend getting specialized help.
Oli is a working mum who has a passion for teaching and all things educational. With a background in marketing, Oli manages the digital channels and content at Courses.com.au