Is a WordPress Website Worth It to Your Business?
The Sprocket Report
Longtime colleagues and clients know that Sprocket is a DNN shop. But more and more often, people are asking for WordPress websites. So yes, we are now working with WordPress as well. Of course there are pros and cons and you should know what they are before choosing one over the other.
First, 20 seconds of education:
DNN is a content management system based on Microsoft’s .NET technology. You build a DNN website with modules that perform specialized functions, among which is blogging.
WordPress is a blogging platform based on PHP and MySQL. You build a WordPress website with plug-ins that perform specialized functions other than blogging.
If your company’s IT department is all about .NET, then DNN is your obvious website choice. If that’s not an issue, then WordPress is another option. Both platforms can provide incredible capability and stunning design when in the hands of experts.
But the thrill of pushing code to its geeky limit isn’t what motivates most small-to-medium businesses. They want a WordPress website because someone said it was a cheap and easy option. Now that we have a number of WP sites under our belt, here’s what we can tell you:
There are fewer options for DNN website hosting and it costs a bit more. WordPress hosting is plentiful and there are some very cheap plans being offered, although we would advise you to pick a hosting service with the best support record even if they are more expensive. Google to read reviews of hosting companies.
Themes vs. Skins
Both WordPress and DNN can change the look of your site without changing the content. WP has themes; DNN has skins. DNN skins tend to be more universal while WP themes are more specific. What that means is you are less likely to lose functionality with a DNN skin change than with a WP theme change.
All technology becomes obsolete and you will need to update your website sooner than you think to keep it functioning. When the core platform updates, your DNN modules or WP plug-ins may no longer work together properly. It can happen with either platform, but because there is a wider variety of WP plug-ins, statistically, your WordPress site is more likely to break.
This is where we are seeing the most angst from our WordPress clients. Like we said, WP themes are specific so if you choose a theme that doesn’t provide the functionality you need, your web developer may write some custom code to make the theme you like do what you want it to do. You probably won’t even know that’s what happened. Everything works fine and dandy until your platform updates or you install a new theme. Suddenly, code breaks, plug-ins don’t work and the original web developer is long gone.
Customized DNN websites can also have this issue, which is why we put our effort into researching and assembling tested modules that naturally provide the functionality a client needs rather than whip out some custom code as a stop-gap measure. Keeping your code as clean as possible will save us time and will save you money if there’s a problem down the road.
So which is the better platform?
Both are great tools in the hands of experts. Our goal has always been to be your website partner so you can do your business better. If you have been hesitant to ask for assistance with your WordPress site, please give us a call. We’re happy to help you find the right website solution for your specific needs.