If your small business is looking to create a website, whether it will be used to blog, foster an online community, or to act as the main website for your business, it can be difficult to choose which service works best for your business’s needs.  You have so many options at various price points that finding the right choice for you can be overwhelming.

Now,  you may be wondering why, as a social media consultant I am writing about the importance of a webiste?  Your business website should be the cornerstone of your interent presence.  Having a body of content (website articles and blog posts) to regularly share on social will be a huge advantage of your presence.

When I started my first website Your Social Media Hour, my business strategist Marcus Padulchick suggested I use WordPress.  I hired a designer, had her train me on the basics, and fell in love with the open source experience.

WordPress is one of the many tools available online to help you create a website.  To put it simply, you build a WordPress with blocks, much like legos.  There are thousands of these blocks, called plugins, are worked on each and every day by thousands of developers.  WordPress is a great resource and tool to utilize to get started in website creation.

As a small business owner, you probably have a long list of requirements in your website.  Most importantly you want to have the overall administrator credentials to your site, the ability to add blog posts and pages, and an SEO plugin (like Yoast) to make sure every page and post has the best chance of ranking.  With Drupal, SquareSpace, Weebly also available, what makes WordPress stand apart?  In addition to satisfing my long list of requirements, here are the highlights:

Simple and Efficient While setting up and monitoring a website may seem like a daunting task, WordPress makes the entire process straightforward.  The site walks you through the creation and start of your site step-by-step. Each website’s look and use depends on the creator; you could make a blog for your small business, an informative site, or anything else you might need. Once your site is up and running creating content is just as simple. Publishing posts, adding images, customizing your theme and adding any content to your small businesses site become simple tasks that only require a few clicks. From one central home page, you can check your stats (how many views and visitors), see all your posts, and look for new themes. WordPress makes navigating your site easy and painless.

SEO Optimization WordPress comes built in with ways to optimize your site to make it more visible in search engines like Google. Built-in features include permalinks, blogrolling, and pinging. WordPress also allows for a lot of alterations to be made to create titles, meta descriptions, categories or tags. And while that may all sound very intimidating and “techie,” most of those features are behind the scenes work. Any customization of descriptions or tags is presented in a simple and clean menu that allows you to type in key words that apply to your site.  In addition to the features already provided, supplementary plugins can also be utilized to help optimize your small businesses site even more sending it to the top of the search result pages.

Complete Control WordPress is site built by and for a community. It is labeled as free software, meaning users can change, improve, run, copy, and distribute the site as they choose. It is completely free to use and allows each creator to utilize the site as they wish. Your small business’s site is under your control only.  WordPress never monitors content, places advertisements on your site, or limits how you are using the service. And within the site you can limit access of editors and contributors, only the creator has total control.

If you’re feeling confident that WordPress might be the service for you and your small business, there are a few ways to get started.  First, buy your URL, pay for WordPress hosting, and make a move.