If you’re looking to build a new website for your business, custom WordPress development is the way to go.
WordPress is by far the most popular CMS. As of the end of 2018, nearly 1/3 of all websites are built off of WordPress, with WordPress controlling about 60% of the market share. And for good reason.
WordPress is incredibly flexible, open source, and user-friendly—making custom website development easier than many other platforms.
As custom WordPress developers, we’re often asked what makes a customised site better than a template site.
We’re happy to answer. Here are six major reasons why custom WordPress sites lead to superior performance.
1. Save Yourself Time in the Long Run
While it may seem faster to pick a template website and CMS and simply plug in your own content, custom sites will save you time in the long run.
Off-the-shelf themes or templates are coded inconsistently from one to the next. Remember: these themes are all built by different developers, each with their own coding styles and preferred structures.
So even with a template site, there can be a high learning curve.
When it comes to making any changes to the theme, whether it’s a HTML structure, CSS markup, or PHP code, you or your developer will have to reverse engineer how the site was built—which can take longer than building an entire site from scratch.
By developing your own custom WordPress site, you are in the driver’s seat. You know how the site is built, so making changes is easy.
2. No “Theme Bloat” or Extra Baggage
One of the biggest advantages of a custom WordPress site is the ability to slim your site down to only the necessities.
Off-the-shelf theme development companies care about one thing only: volume
In order for those companies to be successful, they require a huge number of people to buy their sites. But every individual website user has different needs.
To cater to as many paying customers as possible, these developers cram as many features into these templates as they can. These templated themes come with many page layouts, tons of add-ons, and all kinds of unnecessary bloat—known as “theme bloat”—that you likely won’t ever use.
And, if you ever have to customise the site (which you will some day), you’re just throwing more onto the pile of features.
On the other hand, when you develop your own custom WordPress site, you have complete control over what features go into the site.
That means a slimmed-down, lighter site with only the features you need. Not only does that mean an easier user experience from the backend, it also means less unnecessary code and queries on the website frontend, which means a better experience for your site visitors too.
Which leads us to our next point…
3. A Much Faster Website
When you’re able to control every line of code on your site, you can be sure that every line of code is being used.
That means your code can be fully optimised to be as streamlined as possible, which means faster load times and a smoother user experience.
With an off-the-shelf template you are at the mercy of the site speed you’re given, with limited ability to optimise.
Remember: page speed is becoming increasingly important to Google’s ranking algorithm. According to Google’s industry benchmark data, most sites take around 6 seconds to load.
But their research also shows that 50% of visitors will abandon a page that takes longer than 3 seconds to load.
It’s in Google’s best interest to make sure that they’re only serving up extremely fast websites.
So make sure your site is one of them.
4. Better Search Engine Friendliness
While there are many off-the-shelf templates that provide so-called “SEO benefits,” the reality is that a custom website is always going to have an SEO advantage over a template.
Google’s ultimate goal is to serve up the best websites to its users. If properly designed, a custom site is going to provide a better user experience than a template site—which makes Google happy.
On top of a better front-end experience and faster page load times, custom sites offer a ton of other SEO benefits.
A custom WordPress site will give you greater control over page layouts, the link architecture of your site, the quantity of content you can create, page meta data, and even advanced SEO components like schema markup.
You’ll also have more control over elements like H1, H2, and H3 headings, without being stuck with the default heading tags provided by certain themes.
On top of that, if you ever encounter any SEO issues, you’ll have the ability to get under the hood and fix whatever’s wrong.
5. Security and Support
With an off-the-shelf template site, more built-in features can mean more security holes. You can’t be certain about the reliability and safety of the system you’re using.
When something does go wrong, you’re also far less likely to have the support available to help you through any issues you encounter.
Investing in a custom site also means investing in a developer who’s going to work with you to make sure your business is protected and that you always have the answers you need.
Ultimately, a custom-developed WordPress site is going to give you and your business the freedom it needs to succeed.
A custom site will give you the freedom to service your customers in the best way possible. Not only will you have the ability to tailor the look and feel of your site to your exact specifications, you’ll also be able to control how that frontend meshes with your backend system—to make sure your business processes aren’t hampered by the need to fit into a predetermined template.
You’ll also have more control over your future, with less reliance on third-party tools that could change or be deprecated at any instant. And when browsers and devices change—because they always will—with a custom site, you’ll be primed to easily adapt to that change.
And should your business ever change (always for the better of course), you will be able to adjust your site to those changes, putting you in the driver’s seat.
Fox & Lee – Custom WordPress Developers in Melbourne
At Fox and Lee, we create beautiful and practical solutions. Our Melbourne-based custom WordPress development and design studio can take your business from good to great—with a website that dominates the competition.
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