For All the Hype: 3 Things Wordpress Can't Do For You

by: Ashok Kesavan |

Between you and us, we love Wordpress. There’s no denying it’s popularity and the fact that more than 55% of websites all over the world run on Wordpress with a few others distributed between Joomla and Drupal.  Billy Maddocks of Newsreach U.K, culls out all the disadvantages of using Wordpress.

We agree

To start with, not all businesses will find themselves home with Wordpress in spite of its popularity. The fact: Wordpress is best suited for businesses with very basic, non-custom need for an online presence. It’s particularly good enough for bloggers, professional publishers, and even online magazines. Yet, it’s not a solution without bottlenecks.

Wordpress use is disproportionate given that there are numerous other alternatives. Wordpress has issues with security; it’s inflexible given that content can only be presented in a particular way. You can’t build anything unique or custom for a particular Wordpress site (unless you can pour resources to develop a plugin or have someone develop it for you).

Most importantly, Wordpress lacks proper user management facilities – at least not the kind of facilities you’ll need when you run a membership site, for instance.  

Plugins are a major selling point for Wordpress, and there are well over 26,754 plugins at the plugin directory. There are some more available at third-party marketplaces such as Themeforest and Creative Market.com – that’s a lot of plugins. Can you trust them enough? There are telltale signs to help you determine trustworthy Wordpress themes and Plugins, and Alex Moss of Search Engine Watch gives us a heads up .

You have a decision to make: Will Wordpress work for you? Is it the best solution? Lets find out by exploring what Wordpress can’t do:

Any Website. Pick & Run. No Support Included

We admit that Wordpress can virtually fit into any business idea you can possibly think of – simple one-page portfolio pages, online magazines, directories, listing websites (for real estate, maybe), event-based websites, portals, and small business websites, and ecommerce.

What you ought to know that hosting, designing (or customizing it if you are using themes) and putting up the website is one thing – the security is totally something else.

Wordpress community itself makes specific documentation available. Dragan Nikolic of Search Engine Journal also has a helpful post on how to harden your Wordpress Security

There’s information but you’ll need expertise to apply it to your website. Not all small business owners, bloggers, and most other Wordpress users have the requisite skills to make their Wordpress websites secure. Most businesses, hence, run on insecure websites making their business vulnerable.

Ecommerce? Please leave Wordpress alone; find something else

Who are we kidding, right? Running an ecommerce site is running a full-fledged, all encompassing business off your website. Wordpress is an open-source CMS platform. It’s not an eCommerce engine. Wordpress wasn’t even designed for this in the first place although it does extend itself to this particular use case.

Of course, there are numerous plugins for eCommerce. There are Wordpress themes available for anyone looking to start. Yet, we wouldn’t trust an online business a CMS that’s super popular and hence vulnerable to attacks. We wouldn’t want to place the future of our business on a system that only “extends” itself in utility but was not “built for eCommerce”.  If it’s an online store you wanted, you’d go for Shopify, Open Cart, Magento, MagentoGo (on the cloud), or invest in a complete, standalone, and managed system such as Adobe Business Catalyst.

BMW sedans are great for luxury. When you want to go off-roading, however, you’d be looking to take an SUV out. You get the drift, don’t you?

Small business websites

Wordpress fits the bill for almost any small business website needs. The blog part comes right out of the package apart from a professional outlook as far as looks, navigation, and content is concerned. If you’d like your small business website to do more, you’d obviously want to look at themes and/or plugins to try and see if they can achieve what you want them to do.

All of this is true, but only until a certain point

There are still issues with security. Further, using Wordpress leaves you responsible for upgrades, plugin upgrade failures, etc. Also, you’d be using multiple systems to manage one website – Google Analytics for metrics and analytics, email management systems like Mail Chimp for email, etc.

Your Wordpress theme has been downloaded plenty of times and you lose anything remote to exclusivity (unless you buy complete user licenses for these themes).

For a small business website, even Adobe Muse is a better solution than going for Wordpress.
Here’s an interesting thread of conversation between experts you should read.

What other use cases do you think Wordpress won’t be the best solution for? Do you disagree with our point of view? Please share your thoughts with us.

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