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With so many themes, plugins, code snippets from CSS right through to Jquery, React and now the inevitable launch of Gutenberg – WordPress can cause immense frustration among new and experienced users alike.

WordPress is open source, along with that ‘freedom’ of community building and innovation comes security issues, updates breaking things and speed issues which, as a user of WordPress is a major frustration. Hosting companies have a lot to answer for as well as users seeming inability to READ THE MANUAL on basic things like Backups, FTP, PHP versions and optimization for both SEO and User Experience.

Everyone wants the most cost effective solution – WordPress answers that question in its most basic form – but, if you want a learning platform that performs well, an ecommerce solution that gives a great user experience as well as keeps your customer data safe, secure and ensures payments are taken correctly – you will have to invest – Subscriptions to essential plugins, security, hosting and providing support, costs an immense amount time and money and is a cost of doing business. If you or your clients are not willing to invest in the long term, you will have more problems than you can imagine.

Using free plugins rather than freemium or paid for AND cheap hosting will cause you more issues and contribute to your businesses demise than anything else – least of all – support stinks when you buy cheap!  If you intend on launching a business using WordPress, get ready for the inevitable updates for security, performance and conflicts.

Page Builders are phenomenal, We have Divi, Elementor, Beaver Builder, and many others out there that help us to develop beautiful and functional websites. We need plugins for ecommerce, events, calendars, security, optimization and a whole tonne of other stuff that you don’t realize you need – until you need it. As a marketplace, we do our best to provide the best add ons for the Divi Theme and Elementor – we are also venturing into the general WordPress market soon. This will increase our offering no end but, it will also increase support costs, potential conflicts with the page builders we love and use everyday.

The trouble with WordPress is that it is and will continue to be a go to for every type of user from Bloggers (the original intention) to very complex transactional web sites AND it is free to use, distribute, fork and amend the code (if you can) . WordPress is 30%+ of all websites built – that is going to increase. What we as users need to appreciate is that developers of themes, plugins and addons do their very best to keep up – WordPress itself has core committers who are authorized to put code into WordPress that over 15,000 people have and can contribute too. – as of 2016

63% of WordPress Core Committers Are Not Employed by Automattic

That is an incredible figure right?

Imagine now being a developer of the Divi Theme or Elementor Page Builders – imagine having to keep up with all the core updates, the 55,000+ free plugins and the over 1,000 Divi Addons and the few (but growing daily Elementor Addons). And, that is not including the 35,000+ people that earn money through Envato by selling plugins, themes and creatives.

Since we have been users of Elegant Themes they have gone from 1 person to over 60 in just over ten years and they are still growing daily. Support is inundated with queries from custom solutions to the Divi Builder is broken, There are numerous Facebook groups with thousands of users helping each other daily. Elementor is a similar story – over 800,000 active installations at last look and growing so fast and now with a theme builder ‘built in’ Elementor has stolen a march on Divi for sure – its hard for users to keep up with all the innovations these premier page builders are announcing weekly. But, if you join The Facebook Groups, both Page Builder operators announce through them and of course, in the emails they send out regularly.

WordPress is the ultimate platform for any kind of website – what it is not, is a magic wand and neither are the many addons we have talked about here. The key to any software is learning how to use it at its core. Learn to back up, learn what a hook is, learn what a taxonomy is and a whole raft of other things – a great place to start if you have not already is here – WP BEGINNER

In conclusion, its my advice to take a look around for the best solution for your customer and you. Shopify offers a cost effective solution to a start up ecommerce business. In the UK there is another disruptor in the shape of EKM and of course BIGCOMMERCE. The advantages of using an all in one solution is that all your costs are covered from hosting, to security and of course most addons including payment gateways that you need are all built in – you may need a premium addon but hey, think about what you need first and then you can make an informed decision – one of the best reasons to use these ‘other’ services is: Scalability – no matter how busy  your site gets it will always work!

If you really want the feeling of ultimate control, then of course, look at WordPress and all it can offer in terms of design, flexibility and portability – but – it is not the B all and End all of finding the right solution for you or your business on the web.

Should you decide to go with WordPress utilizing design tools like Divi/Elementor/Beaver Builder and others ;

Get the best hosting you can afford, USE PHP7+ (it makes a phenomenal difference) Expect a learning curve and be aware that support is not instantaneous – on anything.

We offer many learning opportunities both free and premium and are looking to do more in the very near future – focusing of course on Divi, Elementor & WordPress and even running your website business. As Web Agency owners ourselves, we know the pitfalls, the positives and, the best way to get business, generate a recurring income through maintenance plans, regular updates and of course SEO and copywriting services. If you want to keep up to date with what we offer on Elegant Marketplace as well as what is going on in the WordPress eco sphere, please take an opportunity to sign up to our email marketing list, we send a maximum of 2 emails a week!

 

Andrew Palmer on FacebookAndrew Palmer on TwitterAndrew Palmer on Wordpress
Andrew Palmer
Andrew is the owner of Elegant Marketplace, Layoutscloud and civitas e learning and looks after the Developers, product updates and general maintenance of the Elegant Marketplace Websites. He also runs his own Online Consultancy in the UK under the banner of Somebody's Hero.
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