I recently attended my second WordCamp — a learning venue for WordPress. 2013 WordCamp Providence was a bit different. Although there were a few sessions for the novices, this WordCamp was geared toward developers; people who write the code to help keep this open source platform alive and well. Weeks afterward, however, I’m still haunted by the closing remarks in which the message was “Innovate or Die.”
WordPress is the much preferred website platform right now
While a standing-room-only class for WordPress beginners was taking place at WordCamp Providence, there were ‘developers’ in the next room working on the next update of WordPress. Instead of celebrating the success of WordPress and the growing popularity over the last 10 years, these few innovators were madly changing the back-end, in the belief that WordPress needs to be updated every three months, or it risks the fate of Myspace and Aol.
Why I love WordPress for business websites
I love WordPress because I can hand over a marketing savvy website to my clients after it’s designed, and teach them how to use and maintain it. This not only saves my clients money, it empowers them. Being able to add original content on a regular bases also helps keep the focus on driving customers to their website so they can attract their perfect customer, grow their business, and make more money.
Update or die
Following the stock market to see what businesses are on the rise, or falling out of favor is also an interest of mine. Today I learned that tech behemoth Hewlett Packard will be replaced by VISA in the prestigious S&P 500 index. Hewlett Packard has certainly been innovating like crazy, but PC’s, and anything associated with them, have fallen out of favor. This tells me it’s not always a lack of innovation that causes demise, but rather not paying attention to who uses and needs your product or service.
My concern for my clients is that they will not update their sites on a regular basis because needing to update each time they log into their site can be an annoying time suck.
It’s one thing to update a few plugins, but when the message warns that the plugins, plus the framework, plus WordPress itself needs updating, my clients will likely put it off because they don’t have the time ‘right now.’ It may even cause them to put off adding their new blog post. Once this rhythm enters their daily grid, they will post less frequently, and their site for which they were once so excited about, will become stale.
People are gravitating toward WordPress in droves because they hear it’s a free program and “easy to use.” It’s easy use once it’s set up for them. It can also be intimidating and confusing for those who aren’t all that comfortable with the computer. Add the philosophy “Innovate Or Die,” and it may just do the later.
Innovate and Grow
How about “Innovate And Grow,” so the thousands of business owners who love the idea of an easy-to-use and maintain site stays a reality? Not everyone loves working on the computer all day long. I do, but that’s my business. My clients need to grow their businesses and make money, which they won’t be doing if maintaining their sites gets to be burdensome.
I sincerely love all you unshaven, too busy to shower, or tuck in your shirt tales computer guys. I’ve raised two, twenty something best-guys-in-world. I also understand that the idea of “Innovate or Die” is sweeping our culture, but sometimes you need to look at all the classrooms filled with beginners who truly need your genius, and want to learn more about, and use what you’ve brought into the world. They just need a little time to catch up.