We live in a digital age and that means that we have to adapt to the 21st century. Less than a decade ago, you could start a business and get customers through word of mouth or advertising through fliers etc. Now you need a website to really take your business to the next level.
A website drastically increases your market reach but only if you understand how it works. Anyone who is looking to make a website has to use a Content Managing System or CMS, an application or program that is used to create and manage digital content.
WordPress is the fastest growing and most widely used CMS platform on the web with a 54% market share of websites that use CMS.
What is WordPress?
WordPress is an online, open source website creation tool written in PHP. This powerful platform is the easiest and most updated blogging and website CMS available today.
WordPress is widely used all over the world by big names such as Mashable, The New York Times, and several other Fortune 500 companies. Because WordPress is open source, it means that thousands of people around the world are constantly working to make it better.
It is also completely free and to get started, all you need to do is download the program from WordPress.org and start creating your website. It is always best to get professional help in this regard, but even if you don’t want to, it is entirely possible to set up a new WordPress website for your business within 24 hours.
Why use WordPress?
WordPress is the first choice of anyone looking to create a blog or website for their business. Here we have listed a number of reasons why WordPress should be your top choice;
1. It is the most popular CMS in the world – currently used by over 70 million websites.
2. It is free to download, install and use with over 2,600 themes and 31,000 plugins. It is maintained by a large group of volunteers who write patches, answer support questions, write plugins and create themes.
3 .It is easy to use and learn which is why it is the preferred choice of users.
4. Tons of available themes and plugins make it extremely customizable.
5. It is search engine friendly with lots of SEO optimization options available.
6. It is easy to manage with a built-in updater.
7 .It is relatively safe and secure.
8. It can handle all types of media such as images, videos and audio content.
Although there’s a great deal of free content on the web to help you get started with content marketing, a new user may still be unsure about where to start. To prevent this from happening, we suggest that you do some thorough research beforehand so you know the next step.
Create a content marketing plan
Before you get to the content creation and publication stage for your business, it is necessary for you to have an action plan in place:
1. Write down your objectives. Think about your end goal. Is it to generate more traffic to your blogs, increase sales, improve the reach of your business, increase customer loyalty, or something else? Also, write down the potential pitfalls you may face on your way to these goals.
2. Do your research. Understand your target market and their needs so you can create content that is most relevant to them.
3. Think deeply about the analytics that will change the game for your business. Think about all the metrics you will have to measure to track the success of the strategies you implement.
4. Decide the type of content you will be using. Think about the various content forms you will use and what SEO methods you will utilize to increase its exposure.
Make full use of the WordPress plugins available to you
After deciding on your strategy, it’s time for you to get to work by creating a WordPress website or blog. During this process, an important tool that you should make full use of are WordPress plugins.
There is a lot of information out there when it comes to how to use WordPress and what are the most effective themes and plugins available. Some of the most important plugins that you should definitely use are:
This plugin will allow you to plan and schedule posts in a calendar layout. It will help you manage your content with ease so you know when to research, write and post your articles.
This is really useful if multiple people are going to be working on your website. It lets you collaborate and plan with your team by assigning statuses for content such as ’In Progress’, ’Needs Edit’ and ’Ready to Publish’ etc
Easy Content Templates
This is for you if you regularly publish content such as listicles and reviews. The plugin lets you create predefined layouts and then insert them into new posts so that you have a good starting point for your content.
This plugin will let you add social sharing buttons to your content so users can post them to their social media accounts. Social media has become an integral part of modern advertising so the more shares you get the more business you will get.
What to do once you’re done creating your WordPress site
Once you have created your WordPress site, you will need to find a domain name and hosting service. There are a wide range of options available to you depending on pricing but one of the best is WPEngine as they include fully managed servers, automatic WordPress updates, 24/7 support and tons of other options.
If you want to add an online store to your website, then you need to obtain an SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) certificate that helps to create a secure link between your server and the customer’s browser.
After that you will need to add an E-commerce plugin to help run it. One of the most widely used is WooCommerce as it is free and feature rich.
Follow these steps and you are sure to have a great WordPress website to help you grow your business. Every large company starts small and this could be one of your first steps towards becoming successful.