It’s all about your business

melodyI’ve been in Santa Cruz County since 1981, designing and maintaining websites since 1996. You can be confident of my skills (yes, I’m delighted that your nephew builds websites, too!) because as a business owner myself, I want to help you grow your business. Melody Sharp Web Design has developed hundreds of websites–from standard HTML to WordPress CMS–but specializes in collaborating with smaller clients and nonprofits to give them a unique and successful online presence.

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WordPress Just Gets More Popular

Grousing with a colleague recently, as web developers often do, about all the “you’ll have a website up and running in a few minutes” ads on TV (not really true, frankly).  Those “hosted” solutions can be the right choice for, say, a photographer who just wants to upload his latest artwork and be done with it.  Realistically, even very small businesses need features that don’t come with the those simple sites.

My friend Steve mentioned he’d recently checked the Historical trends in the usage of Content Management Systems  (CMS) for websites. It turns out that WordPress has 28% of the market vs. Joomla with 3.3% and Drupal with 2.25.  (If you like stats, here’s a link to the whole enchilada.)

In the early days, I did develop some Joomla sites but found that clients were unable to update their own website…which is kinda the whole idea of using a CMS. So, bottom line is that WordPress is going to be around for awhile, so if you need a website that is mobile-friendly (this is now mandatory for anyone who wants to succeed on the web), check out WordPress and give me a call. It really is free and priceless at the same time.

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Why WordPress Sites Need Maintenance

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WordCamp Volunteers

One of the reasons I attended a recent WordCamp in Sacramento was to find out how WordPress as a Content Management Solution is faring and whether other “hosted” solutions are gaining traction.

When WordPress got started in 2003, it was hailed as a minor miracle for people building websites.  Now used by tens of millions, its community remains kind and generous.  As an Open Source project, hundreds of people all over the world work on it and developers are constantly adding new features and “plugins” that extend its allure.  As they say, “WordPress is limited only by your imagination.”

What I learned is that WordPress continues to grow and improve.  Lots of larger businesses are now building separate WordPress sites within their organizations for specific groups such as Human Resources or Project Teams because it’s easy and doesn’t require IT support.  WordPress remains an excellent solution for small businesses and nonprofits: You can just do more with WordPress than hosted solutions like SquareSpace or Wix.

While WordPress is the most popular publishing platform in the world (it runs more than 24% of all websites worldwide), like everything else on the World Wide Web, it has been attacked by dark forces.  I’ve been building websites for more than 20 years…but keeping those websites secure has become an unfortunate, time-consuming, consequence.

Every WordPress site uses WordPress free software, Premium themes and various plugins that all need to be updated on a regular basis.  And when sites do get hacked, it requires running security software to identify and repair the damage.  My business model doesn’t include maintenance service contracts because I want my clients to “only pay for what they need.”

But the reality is that people become complacent and really can’t be bothered with the protection business until something goes terribly wrong.  Let’s not wait, okay?  If you see that plugins or WordPress need updates, please get in touch so you don’t wake up one morning with the “white screen of death (WSOD)” where your website should be.

 

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WordPress Website Hosting Nightmares

This is a follow up to my post last year about recommendations for WordPress hosting.  Unfortunately, most small, reliable hosting companies are getting swallowed up by the big guys.  These boutique companies start out with great service and tiny monthly fees.  Then they get bought out, enter into greedy price wars, and things start to […]

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