WordPress is arguably the most popular CMS available today. There are a number of reasons for this:
- WordPress is relatively easy to install
- WordPress is widely available
- WordPress is supported by a huge community of WordPress developers
- And let’s not forget: WordPress is Free to install and use
While WordPress is a great platform, to build a good quality, commercial website with WordPress can and does take some time.
How Long Does It Take To Build A Basic Website
I can install WordPress on my host in about five minutes using an automated installer. Once the installer is finished, I will have a basic WordPress website that I can start adding content to. This is a great starting point for a novice blogger to work from. However, while this will be a sophisticated website, one that is ready for content, there isn’t much functionality beyond basic page and blog post creation. If you want to add any real cool functionality, you’ll have to do some more work.
The basic blog we just installed (above) is just that, a basic blog. You can, post whatever content you want here. You can post your thoughts on Global warming, or build a site about your favorite breed of dog. However, If you want to make some money with a site like this, your options are a bit limited. Sure, you can join an affiliate program and promote affiliate products on the site but if you won’t be able to do any actual selling on your site until you’ve added an ecommerce solution.
How Long Does It Take To Build A WordPress Ecommerce Website
Another great thing about WordPress is your site can grow and evolve over time. The site we installed using the automated installer can also be used for ecommerce with the addition of a shopping cart plugin.
There are a lot of shopping carts available right now. However the “Gold Standard” is Woocommerce. Woocommerce (or simply Woo) is a shopping cart developed by the developers of WordPress itself, so you can trust that it is tightly integrated with WP already. Woo, like WP is free to use, just another reason it is a great option. Once Woo has been installed there will be some configuration required. You’ll have to input information about your business (name, address etc), you’ll also have to configure your payment solution (how you’ll get paid). Paypal standard is available with the free plugin, this will allow you to create products on your site, add a “Buy Now” link that will allow people to purchase the products with the payment immediately going to your Paypal account. This is a great solution for new stores, the one drawback to this is that to make the actual payment, your customers will be sent to the Paypal site, once the click the buy button. If you want to keep the visitors on your site, you’ll need to opt for a Woo extension ( a plugin that works with Woo).
There are a number of options here, you can go with Paypal Pro, which keeps the user on your site for the full purchase process. Or, you can go with a non-Paypal solution like Stripe or Authorize.net. While these extensions do cost money (usually under $100), they give your store a more professional feel. Bottom line, you can create the store functionality in a few hours.
WordPress Website Design
Now we get to what is usually the most time consuming part of WordPress website development. Design! WordPress has thousands of Free themes that you can choose from. Most of them are good quality and create a nice look for your site. The drawback is that any number of websites can use your exact theme. To give your site a truly unique look you’ll need to go with a more custom design. Custom design will require some thought about the look of your site and how it will interact with the various components (like you online store). You’ll need to think about what your visitors will see and how to best display your products and content.
That said, there is a mid-range solution. Sites like Themeforest sell good quality WordPress themes that are fully debugged, responsive and supported. While not free, most cost in the range of $50 to $75 and often include paid plugins (like Elementor or Revolution slider) that provide good functionality that you would normally pay for. These paid themes, can be set up exactly like the demo looks (just with your content), often however, they allow you to customize their look a bit, so you won’t have the exact same site as other people who purchased the same theme. Purchasing a theme like this will greatly help you develop the new site but, there will still be quite a bit of dev time involved.
I hope you see that WordPress is a great solution for the development of your website. You can either do it yourself or contact ME! to help you through the process.