In the game of tennis, the word “advantage” means that one player has a one-point lead after a tie at deuce (40-40, or 3-3 in simple terms) and needs one additional point to win the game. When it comes to church websites, we believe that the advantages of WordPress over other church-specific website platforms means a church that uses WordPress doesn’t just gain an advantage…it wins the game. That’s why we use WordPress at Aboundant church websites.
WordPress vs Church Website Platforms
Ease of Use
Let me state this up front: WordPress is not the easiest website platform available. I have no idea what is, but there most certainly are some that are simpler…but typically, that also means they are less full-featured. WordPress provides a terrific blend of having tons of features while remaining relatively easy to learn and use. One can start off learning the basics, knowing there will always be much more to learn. You’ll never have to learn any code (unless you want to, of course.) I have trained a number of church volunteers to work in WordPress who previously had no website experience, so I know it isn’t difficult.
Church-specific platforms have come a long, long way in recent years. Some are incredibly easy to use, and others just feel a bit more clunky. You may well come across one that you think is easy to use, and that’s terrific, because ease of use definitely matters in many settings. However, ease of use alone isn’t the only factor to consider.
Hundreds off people work on plugins, extensions, themes, bug fixes, and enhancements for WordPress, far more than for any other platform. Occasionally this can mean that things can break within your website if you don’t follow a few simple best practices when doing updates. However, the regular development in the WordPress community means that someone, somewhere has probably created a solution to any website idea or need you have.
On the other hand, your average church website company is made up of just a few coders. They do incredible work, but they’re also dealing with customer support and their own website. While many WordPress coders may only work part-time, when you add all of those hours together it’s essentially a mammoth collaborative effort to keep improving WordPress.
Exporting Your Data
Many people never think about exporting their pages and other data when they decide to create a website. That’s a huge mistake. For example…
- Suppose your website company goes out of business. Would you have a backup that could be used elsewhere?
- What if you simply decide to change platforms in a few years? Would your data be easily exportable into a format that other websites could import?
- What if your website company gets hacked? That might cause you to lose trust in them and want to move elsewhere. But could you?
WordPress websites, on the other hand, are easily exported. You can move your site from one host to another host that offers WordPress. There are plugins that will allow you to export your site to XML and CSV formats, which can be easily imported in other platforms. Some website platforms even have build-in tools that will convert data from WordPress. Bottom line: your data should be your data, so make sure you can take it elsewhere if you need to.
Ubiquity = Ease of Getting Help
So many people use WordPress that other web-based content management systems just don’t even come close. That means you can likely find many people near you or online who can assist you with graphic design, setting up plugins, writing content, and much more.
Church website platforms are going to be much less familiar to developers. They can likely learn them easily, but if you’re hiring someone you’ll be billed for those hours.
And There’s More!
Here’s a quick summary of some other WordPress benefits. If you’re comparing a church website platform to WordPress, these are other things to consider.
- It has built-in SEO features, and its website structure is loved by search engines.
- The design is completely customizable.
- The blogging features are incredibly powerful and can “ripple” throughout your site.
- WordPress is web-based, so you can access your site from anywhere. And, though not a lot of people do this, it’s also possible to have a WordPress installation directly on your computer.
- WordPress allows you to have multiple users, and you can set different permissions for each of them.
- Sites built in WordPress are scalable, meaning it can handle sites with incredibly huge numbers of pages.
- WordPress is an open source software. When you use WordPress, you’re choosing to to be part of a collaborative revolution with many benefits for its users.
WordPress is not for everyone, and there are plenty of valid reasons why many users decide to use other platforms. However, for most churches, WordPress can offer significant advantages that few other platforms can match. It’s definitely worth your serious consideration.
Ready to give WordPress a try? Start your Aboundant trial today. We make it easy and affordable!