When is WordPress Not the Best Option for Site Owners and Brands

WordPress has quickly become the go-to solution for creating web sites and blogs on the internet today. However, is this a massive trend that is getting out of control? Does every site you create need to have a full WordPress installation behind it, along with a custom theme and premium plugins?

For anyone that is currently running a number of WordPress sites, it’s definitely something that you can relate with. This is especially true if you wanted to create a quick website with only a few pages or one that you aren’t going to load up with a lot of content and update often. Web site hosting and site creation platforms like Duda are making it easy for businesses and brands to get online, without the need to learn and fidget around with WordPress. And this actually makes good sense, as many brands just want to ‘get online and make sales’.

I personally run a lot of WordPress sites and love how it’s been able to transform my business for the better, but it might not always be the best solution for others out there. A perfect example of this is when I created a social media resource site that went on to generate over $800,000 profit in just four months. The crazy thing about that site is that it was 100% HTML! It was also actually the last site I created by hand before getting active with WordPress.

What I’m getting at, is that there are plenty of ways to create websites and WordPress might not always be the best solution. Here are a few reasons why.

WordPress Can Be Overwhelming

As simple as WordPress might be to existing bloggers and users of the platform, to someone brand new it can definitely be overwhelming. This is especially true if you don’t have a web hosting provider that has one-click installs. The idea of downloading software, creating a database and just looking at the manual set up process is enough to quickly turn someone away.

Many local businesses and brands will hire a web developer to get their sites online. More often than not, WordPress is used as the platform of choice for getting that done. However, when it comes to the management and updating of the site, if this is something the business wants to do, they are going to need to learn WordPress.

Again, keep in mind — in this scenario, the business ‘simply wants to be online’ and not ‘be a web designer’.

WordPress is Free, but Can Also Be Costly

As we all know, the WordPress CMS is free to download and use to create your site. However, who wants to just use WordPress and the bare bones it comes with? With this in mind, there might be quite a few hidden costs that arise as you continue to develop your site. This is especially true if you decide to go with a free web hosting service, which I never recommend! Not only would you have no ownership over your content, it would also just look extremely unprofessional in the process.

After going live with your hosted version of a WordPress site, many people will find they need a premium or custom theme to make sure they stand out from the crowd. They may also soon find that that need to hire a programmer or designer to make simple customizations, simply because they don’t know how to use the platform orย do simple coding. Throw premium WordPress plugins into the mix and you can rack up these costs even more.

While these costs are usually quite minimal, they are often unexpected to site owners and bloggers who thought they were going to get by with a ‘free’ site builder and CMS solution.

Better Options in Site Building for Professionals

Don’t get more wrong, WordPress is great and it’s completely changed the way content creation and websites are made on the internet today. However, it’s not for everyone. This can easily be seen through all of the online advertisements and television commercials for competing hosting and site design solutions that offer simple drag-and-drop solutions. Most businesses and brands want to get online with a site of their own, then move into the focus of content promotion and growing their business. While there are some pages that every site should have, these are still quite easy to create and add to a site without the need of a full WordPress installation driving your site. That’s where many of these other solutions are far superior to WordPress and trying to run everything on your own.

To back up this statement even more, we can take a look at a few case studies from Duda that show the many different ways a transition from a WordPress type of platform to a service-based site builder can improve not only on-site experience but also how fast a site ranks and can increase user engagement and conversions as well.

  • WebAct cut site development by 50% after switching from WordPress to Dudaโ€™s responsive website builder.
  • Conscious Commerce brought down website costs from $3,000 to $300 per site and reduced development time by 75 percent.
  • The Gladly increased total number of Reserve a Table clicks by 70 percent between August and September 2014 with the simple addition of a Notification Bar personalization rule.

Each of the case studies and improvements made to the site was possible through the use of a solution that had everything in place, without the need to download software, and to purchase additional themes or plugins. While there are similar case studies and methods to improve a site’s performance with WordPress, for most brands and professionals, the requirement for learning a new platform isn’t possible.

Before creating your next website, be sure to consider your options outside of WordPress. As great as it may seem, it might not always be the best option around.

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13 thoughts on “When is WordPress Not the Best Option for Site Owners and Brands”

  1. Pete says:

    Hey Zac this is an amazing post and something a lot of people will enjoy reading! I personally have a lot of wordpress sites but I also have custom html sites aswell!. They do vary in load time and of course it depends on the servers being used! Great article ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Zac Johnson says:

      Thanks, glad you liked it!

  2. Hi Zac,

    Super counterpoint post ๐Ÿ™‚

    I generally recommend WordPress for serious bloggers but depending on your posting frequency, willingness to get down and dirty with design and backend stuff, and your commitment to learning the skill of blogging thru such a robust platform, it may not be your cup of tea. I love the site, and would never change platforms, but appreciate the drawbacks and also how some bloggers can skip it and see fine results online.


    1. Zac Johnson says:

      Hey Ryan, thanks for the comment!

      I definitely love WordPress and have built many great sites and businesses using it as well. However, just as I outlined in the post… sometimes there are more simple and fast solutions for when you just need a quick content or info site ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. Susan Velez says:

    Hi Zac,

    I love WordPress and have managed to create a WordPress freelancing business.

    Yes, WordPress can be challenging to anyone who hasn’t used it before. I still remember the first time I got started with it. The whole experience almost scared me away from it.

    However, I stuck with it and I’m glad I did. I now love it and provide tutorials on my blog to help beginners start their own blog.

    Personally, I would never create an HTML site. I just don’t have the patience to do it. Congrats on your social media resource HTML site.

    Personally, I recommend a self-hosted WordPress blog for anyone who is serious about building up an authority site. There’s just so much you can do to WordPress it makes it easy to work with.

    Thanks for sharing this with us and it is an eye opener, especially for someone who just wants a small site that doesn’t require a blog.

    Have a great day ๐Ÿ™‚


    1. Zac Johnson says:

      That’s awesome, congrats! I always love seeing and hearing about new businesses that have been created around the WordPress platform, users and community.

  4. Hello Zac,

    Great post. I have been using WordPress from past 5 years and I think it is my one of the favorite CMS for blogging. I do agree about the drawbacks of WordPress and fortunately in my past 5 years I am able to solve these issue. Thanks again for this great post.

    Enjoy your Day ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Zac Johnson says:

      Great to hear. WordPress is great for most “blogs”, but HTML and simple one-page sites do have their benefits as well. Thanks for the comment!

  5. Hey,

    I have been using WordPress for quite a long time now and it has been very efficient for me. In spite of its drawbacks, it offers much more flexibility and customization options as compared to other website builders.

    Either way, it was quite an interesting article. Thanks for sharing.

    1. Zac Johnson says:

      Agreed, WordPress has made the process of site creation and management so much easier. Its completely change the way web sites and content is created on the internet today.

  6. Amit Ranjan says:

    Hi Zac,

    That was really an amazing article. I have already used on WordPress So very useful for my Website.

    Thanks for sharing.

  7. Mic Sumner says:

    The **Main** point that I use WordPress in our agency for is that it’s got a great SEO plugin called Yoast SEO that deals with all the heavy work that you would have to do with SEO, metadata, XML Sitemaps, and templating.

    If you could wave me a better solution for SEO outside of WordPress, please shout it out!

    This is the core reason why I still use WordPress since it is a great way to get up organic traffic through sound SEO that comes as part of the Yoast SEO plugin โ€” kudos to the team!

    I am aware that loading times will have a great impact too on a website and this is due to crawl budget that is given by Google to websites through the use of their Googlebot spiders.

    And that the main ranking factor actually is Bounce rate, and that visual load speed of a website is the determining factor of low or high bounce rate.

    So with that in mind, I do create fast websites through WordPress and understand that serverless is way faster than configuring WordPress and the server it’s hosted on.

    Of course, if the website is merely a landing page of sorts then something like LeadPages would do better if it’s not a long-term website!

    Or if it’s eCommerce then there’s some weighing to do between WooCommerce (again for SEO), Magento, Shopify, Big Commerce, etc.

    But again, please shout out to me a solution that is better than WordPress for SEO reasons!

    Kind regards,


  8. I have extreme reservations recommending WordPress to clients who need a website for their business. Simply, WordPress was built as a blogging platform and isnโ€™t meant to be used for full blown websites. I know a lot of folks, especially WordPress gurus, would give me some stick with that statement.

    Regardless, clients who simply โ€œwant to get onlineโ€ always go for the cheapest option and donโ€™t think in the long term with regards to web development.

    WordPress might be fine for just a few pages here and there, however, once the business grows, the client would continue to add more content which will become difficult to manage. Itโ€™s going to be a ball ache! WordPress is more of a hacked CMS then a full fledged one – itโ€™s like a budget airline.

    There are far better CMS solutions out there such as CraftCMS, ExpressionEngine and even Drupal.

    Leave WordPress to the bloggers.

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