This website is an example in itself. It uses WordPress as a Content Management System (CMS) so that it can be modified, expanded and updated very easily.
It is hosted on an ISP which provides just the basic LAMP combination – that is, Linux, Apache, MySQL database and PHP scripting. This is the most common and most robust combination on the Web and I recommend it to all customers. It uses the minimum requirements – at the time of writing it was using less than 50MB of disk space for the WordPress install plus the images for the theme and the content, plus a single MySQL database with about 150kB of postings.
The main benefits of using WordPress are:
- WordPress is a Content Management System (CMS) which makes it easy to add pages and manage the menus
- WordPress is also a Blogging System which makes it easy to add postings and categorise them
- I can update online by posting through the Administrative interface
- I can update remotely using Blogging software on my desktop computer, such as Windows Live Writer, BloGTK or QTM
- WordPress emphasises ease of use, so it is much easier for non-programmers to update and modify than just about any other CMS available
- There’s a huge development community contributing themes and plugins to customise the appearance and modify the functionality of a website
- Automatic Search-Engine Optimisation (SEO) added as a plugin
- Automatic backups of posts by email added as a plugin
- Built-in comment-spam blocker added as a plugin
- Integrated Google Analytics added as a plugin
- Automatic merging of my STLplus RSS feed added as a plugin
The visual design is my own, using the convention with WordPress that you start with a standard theme and then customise it by altering the proportions, fonts, colours and graphics. This is easy to do and therefore cheap to the customer. In this case, customisation took only a few hours work, most of which was designing the banner incorporating my logo and then blending-in the colours of the rest of the website.