Whatever size of organisation, and whatever features you need, WordPress is one of the best tools a charity can use to run its website. It enables you to take control of your own website and easily make changes to its content. WordPress sites can be set up quickly and at reasonable cost, and is flexible enough to build almost any kind of website.
WordPress helps you keep your website up-to-date
Once upon a time if you needed to change some text or a picture on your website, your web designer would charge to do it for you. Not these days. You can write new pages, rearrange their order, format text, insert images and embed videos, without having to have technical skills or know how to write html code. You just login to your website with a password and start making edits.
It’s easy to learn
You won’t need to send yourself on a training course to learn how to use WordPress: it’s fairly intuitive, most people figure it out themselves with a bit of guidance. You can learn a lot by watching free training videos and reading tutorials. However, if you plan to have several people writing content for your website or have a very large website, one or two short on-site group training sessions would be advisable.
WordPress can be used to build simple or complex websites
WordPress is very flexible and can be used to build almost any kind of website. Plugins can be installed that give additional functionality and make it invaluable for your organisation.
There are frequent upgrades and improvements
WordPress has a very active community of users and developers committed to its development. New versions come out regularly and bring new useful features and improvements, as well as ensuring it stays safe and secure.
WordPress is more accessible out-of-the-box than many content management systems, although in the end it’s the quality of the individual developer’s coding that counts. The back-end dashboard where you edit content can be used by visually impaired people using screen-reading software.
WordPress is free
You can download and install WordPress for nothing and for charities that’s clearly a good thing. However, what about the cost of hosting it, installing it and the staff time spent learning to use it? Good news is it’s quick and easy for a web designer to install, and easy for you to learn.
WordPress is open source
That means that any web developer can see the underlying code and customise any part to their own needs. Plus when it’s installed within your website no-one can take it away from you. It’s a flexible, adaptable tool and it’s easy to find a web designers with experience of working with it.
Your website can be built to match your branding
You can easily change the look and style of your website using what’s called a Theme. Thousands of free themes are available from wordpress.org/extend/themes.
Premium i.e. paid-for themes often have better options for customisation and more features. They are usually inexpensive and can save you a great deal of time and money when developing a website. Very good themes can be bought from StudioPress and many other reputable theme companies.
The quality of coding of both free and premium themes can be variable, so it’s wise to check out the reviews and get a professional developer to give you a second opinion before you go ahead.
If you require very specific functionality, or have complex branding, you may need to commission a web developer to create a theme to match your organisation’s branding and include those features you really need.
The Nonprofit WordPress Guide
Written by Mark Root-Wiley, I recommend you read this excellent step-by-step guide to planning, hosting, installing and customising WordPress, and keeping your website healthy. I can’t recommend it highly enough. Read the Nonprofit WordPress Guide
Looking for a WordPress developer?
I would be happy to discuss your needs and help you decide whether WordPress is the right tool for your charity website. You can also hire me to support and maintain an existing website, or customise the way it works, and I can also provide training.
Please get in touch.