If you’re considering moving your school website to the WordPress platform, then great decision!
WordPress is an incredibly easy to use, trusted, flexible and future-proof platform on which to build your schools new website.
In this short article we’ll take a look at why, in our 10 years experience building school websites and other brochure style sites, WordPress is a rock-solid platform to grow with.
WordPress is a trusted and open source
WordPress is an open source content management system (CMS) used by approximately 75 million websites at the time of writing. Wow! That’s a lot of websites, but what does this mean for your school?
Firstly, it means WordPress is totally free to use, so you don’t have to cover any additional licensing costs for your web development agency to build your new school website with it, this keeping costs down.
Secondly, because so many agencies across the world work with WordPress, there’s no danger in moving your site to another company if you’d like to work with another agency further down the line. This is a real big plus when it comes to contingency planning, as if you work with an agency who have developed their own CMS, you’ll be locked into working with them for the foreseeable future.
And finally, over 75 million sites are powered by WordPress, and its trusted by some really big brands, so that’s one reason why it’s a fantastic platform to develop your new school website on.
WordPress will give your school flexibility
If you work with a WordPress agency who build bespoke WordPress themes, then you are sure to have a school website that is flexible and can adapt as your school changes and grows.
This is really important for any business, not just schools. As your goals, marketing messages and content change and evolve, you need your school website to be able to adapt with you.
Because WordPress also has a massive library of plugins (plugins provide added additional functionality) it can save your school a vast sum of money when it comes to development costs too.
Why? Well, this is because it’s very likely that the feature you need is already available as a plugin. If this is the case, then 80% of the development work has already been done, it will just be a case of your school web development agency installing, configuring and potentially modifying the plugin to suit your needs.
WordPress will help your school website rank for SEO
You definitely want your new school website to rank well on Google. That’s not news to anyone.
But what you might not know is that WordPress originally started life as a blogging platform, and it just so happens that publishing content regularly is something that will help your school website climb the Google rankings.
Building your school website on WordPress means that creating and publishing new content is extremely quick and easy.
The developers behind WordPress create the platform with the following in mind;
- Fast loading – WordPress is optimised for fast loading out of the box
- Coding standards – it’s been developed with good solid coding standards meaning there’s little bloat and everything has been nicely optimised.
- XML sitemaps – WordPress automatically generates an XML sitemap of your website, which can be submitted to Google to make crawling your site quicker and easier.
- Robust navigation – WordPress has robust navigation options with dropdowns, categories, tags and more. This means your school site can have a solid user experience.
- Image optimisation – WordPress has image optimisation built in, so you can specify “alt tags” for accessibility and it will also help compress imagery too
There is also an incredible SEO plugin available called Yoast SEO (which we wrote a guide on by the way) that can help you configure and manage the SEO aspects of your site without having to pay an SEO company a frighteningly large monthly retainer.
WordPress is easy to use for anyone in your school
Getting to grips with adding and editing content on your school website is easy with WordPress.
So easy in fact that you could even have some of your students help manage the website and post content to it if you wish.
Most school web design agencies will provide a training session once your new site is built, but that’s really just to get to grips with where you can find the relevant areas of your school website you want to edit. Actually editing the content with WordPress is extremely simple with the “WYSIWYG” (what you see is what you get) editor.
WordPress will keep your school website secure
WordPress is built with security in mind – the WordPress creators had to dedicate a lot of time to this due to its popularity as a platform.
Out of the box WordPress is really secure, but if you’re working with experienced WordPress developers, there are further simple security measures that can be taken to totally lock down your school site and ensure it’s fully secure. One tool we love is iThemes Security.
Once your new school website is complete you’ll want to ensure that your web development agency regularly update any plugins that your site uses on a monthly basis. This helps to ensure that there aren’t any vulnerabilities with your site.
WordPress will make your school’s web presence future proof
This is because there is a very large community behind WordPress, and this is important because it means that WordPress is continually being developed and improved upon.
New updates get released regularly with important improvements, and we believe it’s really important for any website to be running on a platform that is forward thinking and future proof.
So what are you waiting for?
We hope that’s helped answer some of your questions about whether WordPress is a solid platform for you to use for your new school website.
We’ve been working with WordPress for over 10 years and would highly recommend it. As a platform it’s capable of so much, and because of its popularity it makes it relatively inexpensive in terms of development costs too.
If you’d like to have a conversation about how we can help your school migrate to WordPress with a fresh, bespoke design, get in touch with us. We’ve already helped St Mary’s and Hanford schools do just that.
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