5 Problems With WordPress for Businesses Is WordPress the right website building solution for small business?
Bigger doesn't necessarily mean better. This well-worn adage is true even in the world of website building tools, a realm largely dominated by WordPress. Where once upon a time, WordPress was a simple tool used by a smattering of bloggers, today it has grown into a giant among website builders.
But does its status mean it's the best solution for small businesses? Not quite.
As a small business owner, you understand that your web presence has the potential to make or break your success. Choosing a website building tool that attracts both new and existing customers, and yields conversions and leads is a necessity.
Though WordPress sites certainly have the potential to be robust e-commerce solutions, the average small business owner doesn't have the tech know-how -- or time -- to properly create a site with this do-it-yourself solution.
These five issues highlight common problems small business owners encounter when using WordPress.
Storefront Development and Maintenance Woes
WordPress offers a slew of attractive templates through its do-it-yourself service, but this surplus can be overwhelming to someone without a background in web design. Choosing a template that best meets the needs of a small business is no small task.
If the template you've chosen isn't properly optimized across different browsers and mobile devices, it is suddenly up to you to compensate for that shortage or to update it accordingly.
This type of DIY solution requires small business owners to have a skill set that might not be inherent; otherwise, their option is hire developers to build and maintain their site -- a costly process that takes away from the owner certain necessary elements of control and access.
Reliance on Third Party Apps
WordPress sites that feature a slew of bells and whistles are not able to do so entirely on their own through native, integrated features. In fact, most WordPress websites use a number of third party apps to incorporate features like calendars, newsletters, or product slideshows, which are helpful for engaging customers. Literally thousands of third party apps exist for WordPress sites, and as a small business owner, this can again be an overwhelming field to explore on your own, without the help of a pricey developer.
If you do manage to incorporate these third party apps onto your website, you must then remember that WordPress doesn't account for their operation. This means it's up to you to maintain and update them, and troubleshoot if problems arise.
Shortage of Integrated E-Commerce Options
Every small business website should incorporate certain e-commerce tools that ensure the success of the site and business, and help business owners gather leads and generate conversions. These types of tools can include client management, sales tracking solutions, merchant account services, discount managers, messaging services, and appointment schedulers.
Though it's possible to incorporate these into your site using third party apps, none of these features are native to the WordPress website builder. Again, you'll run up against the issues discussed above: needing the know-how to integrate the apps, as well as maintain and troubleshoot them.
WordPress gained acclaim for being an open-source service, a feature that is a perk for developers, but can spell security trouble for small business websites. These open-source features mean it is susceptible to hackers. Most recently, in January 2015, thousands of small and medium size business websites were attacked in a widespread hacking incident.
High Cost and Lack of Support
Though WordPress offers a number of free templates, most small business owners will need a more powerful solution, which can be costly. In addition to templates, owners will also face separate website hosting costs, and the cost of integrating outside tools. This assumes, of course, that the owner is able to go it alone building the website and doesn't require the help of pricey developers.
Another website building option exists for small business owners. Platforms, such as Ocoos, offer an integrated solution for small business websites. The platform's technology, maintenance, and updates are handled behind the scenes. Your site is optimized across mobile devices and browsers as technology changes. Plus, e-commerce tools are directly available through the solution -- without having to rely on third party apps. These tools include integrated payment methods, CRM functionality, discount managers, and the ability to accept complex transactions.
Perhaps the most valuable part of the Ocoos platform is its concierge service. Rather than meddle with a DIY solution, small business owners will have access to Ocoos's concierge service for a fee, which will set up the initial site, but also allow owners to have full access to the tools to update the content. This is a cost-effective alternative to DIY website builders which require pricey developers to often lend a hand.