One of the most amazing things I have learned over the past few years about running my own web design service is how little many of my clients actually know about the web design process. Knowing just some minor facts about the best options for the site you want put on the Internet can help you decide which route to chose for a platform to manage your site.
The most common question people as me when we have our pre-design consultation is ,
“What is a blog and how is it different from a web site ?” The answer is simple.
A blog is a web site. It’s actually a web site on steroids because there are so many benefits to making your site a blog site as opposed to the standard HTML site of a decade ago.
So when a person thinks of a classic static web site. They assume the site will have a home page, about page, services, contact, and etc. No problem, easy enough right? Well, not really. The classic web site that is made in the standard web language which is called HTML. Unless you know how to code HTML yourself and upload every change to your ftp server, then this is a perfectly fine way to run an online site if you have the knowledge, but most people do not have the knowledge, and that is where the problem starts, traditional web sites are inconvenient.
If your not a coder then the second option that web designers will offer clients who want a standard html website but yet have the power to upload and make changes is called a CMS or Content Management System. These are installed software modules that can be added to your server. Your site will be created in the CMS and you will be able to edit certain areas of the site but it still does not give you full control over layout, content placement and design. The best CMS platforms can be costly and in my opinion are totally a waste of time. Anything that limits you is not worth paying for.
Now let’s say your interested in a blog but you don’t want that blog look. That’s fine. WordPress is a CMS platform that gives the user full control over content with the ability to display static (web page) and dynamic pages (blog posts, archives, categories) both on one site. In my opinion, if you can find a great blog designer you should be able to have your blog site configured exactly as you would have your static web site setup and designed. The viewing public should have no reason to assume it’s a blog until they go to your blog page link if you choose to have it show on the site.
Some great truths about blogs:
- They constantly expose potential customers and current customers with fresh and useful content.
- The blog allows the user to interact with the blogger and the comments, link backs, and facebook shares that they have between each other can be a tremendous boost in traffic.
- The software is 100% free
- The easy implementation of seo optimization
- Updating WordPress takes one click and are automatically sent out as they are released
- You have full control over the content. You can login to the dashboard, edit , delete, or add any amount of content you chose. This can also be done by using plugins that allow easy access via iPad, and other mobile technology. You cannot do that with a typical html web site.
- Social media services like Facebook, Digg and Twitter loves blogs. Social media is huge for seo and site traffic. The social media factor is all about whats fresh and new, so it’s makes sense a platform that allows you to constantly make updates that can be sent straight out from your blog site to social media just adds to the “link juice” that google loves so much.
“The data was crystal clear: Companies that blog have far better marketing results. Specifically, the average company that blogs has:
- 55% more visitors
- 97% more inbound links
- 434% more indexed pages
Back in the old days of the web design era. Any business who had a web site would then go hire a blog designer to create a separate blog for the site and interlink them. There were so many limitations back then in design and functionality. Now, just for seo benefits alone, I always try to explain to the client that getting a blog and a site all in one root folder running on one platform is the most cost effective and seo friendly way to go nowadays.
So you maybe your thinking, “I don’t need all that blog and social media stuff, I just want a website I can update on my own” Great, that is 100% possible. If you do not want the blog section of WordPress to be displayed, then your static web pages can be the only pages showing on your site and you will still receive all the benefits of WordPress and control over your content. The best part is the blog section is already part of the site. So if later on you want to make the blog visible it’s as easy as adding the blog link to the menu and BAM, your blog is now visible to readers on your site. You control what is viewed, and that’s the beauty of WordPress for web site design.
So in conclusion, a traditional old school html web site will most likely require you to find and pay a designer every single time you request a change, any change because it’s static and needs a user with knowledge of code to be the most effective . A WordPress blog site (once it’s properly set up, configured and designed by a professional) gives you the identical look and feel of a web site with full control over your page content. You can create unlimted pages and blog posts in WordPress and in the end, that just makes google like you even more. The more relevant content you add the better your site placement rankings will be.
I always tell my blog design clients that writing a page or a post in WordPress is maybe 10% more complex than sending out an email. It’s simple , and any good designer always makes sure the client understands how to easily use WordPress once the site is complete.
So don’t assume that a blog designed in WordPress is not a possible option for your next web project. In my opinion, it’s the only option, and it’s what the top web developers use today.