WordPress is the world’s most popular content management system (CMS). It powers over 40% of all websites and more than 64% of those that use a CMS. It’s easy to use and customize. But is it the best option for enterprise websites?
WordPress continues to grow in popularity as large companies realize its capabilities for building a robust site that can scale with their needs. But if you want to use WordPress for enterprise, it’s essential to understand how it works. It’s also worth exploring examples of how you can use the CMS, along with some plugins and hosting options you can leverage.
In this post, we’ll discuss what to expect from the WordPress enterprise ecosystem, its benefits, and the best WordPress plugins to use. We’ll also cover real-world examples of WordPress enterprise sites and wrap up with frequently asked questions (FAQs).
Can WordPress be used for enterprise sites?
An enterprise CMS is a system used to manage websites for large organizations. It handles content, workflow, user roles, and other aspects of site administration.
But is WordPress powerful enough to be a viable option for your big company? The short answer is yes. WordPress is a robust CMS used to power some of the largest websites in the world. It’s flexible, easy to use, and highly customizable.
If you want to make WordPress completely enterprise-ready, however, there are a few things you’ll need to do first, including:
- Choosing reliable, fast hosting
- Installing helpful plugins
- Adding multilingual functionality
- Implementing security solutions
How robust is the WordPress enterprise ecosystem?
WordPress has been around since 2003, making it one of the oldest content management systems. This long history means that it’s mature, with a rich ecosystem of developers, resources, and tools.
The WordPress community is one of the most active worldwide, with thousands of developers contributing to its development and management. If you run into any issues with security or performance, there’s a good chance that someone else has already solved it. They’ve likely also made their solution available for you to use, too.
Furthermore, WordPress has a huge library of plugins and themes that allow you to customize your site however you’d like.
What are the benefits of using WordPress for enterprise sites?
WordPress offers many advantages over other content management systems, including ease of use, cost savings, and flexibility for customizing enterprise-level sites. Here are just a few of the benefits:
1. Powerful and automated backup solutions
With WordPress, there are a variety of excellent options for backing up your website. This protects you in case anything ever goes wrong, like a hack or coding error.
You can always manually save a copy of your site from your hosting provider or with file transfer protocol (FTP) software. Or, you can use a plugin like Jetpack Backup, which backs up your site in real time.
This solution is incredibly powerful, because it means that every action that takes places on your site — a product sale, a contact form submission, an updated page, an added plugin — is saved automatically. You’ll always have a copy of the latest version of your site on-hand, that you can restore in just a few clicks.
Your backups are also stored on trusted servers — the same ones used for all of the WordPress.com sites — completely separately from your hosting provider. So if your host’s server is compromised, your off-site backups won’t be.
This type of backup solution is critical for enterprise-level businesses who simply can’t afford to have their site down for long periods of time or, even worse, lose all of their content or data completely.
2. Enterprise-grade security options
No platform is ever completely safe from hackers or security vulnerabilities. But WordPress developers are constantly working on the platform to ensure that it’s built with high-quality, clean code, and they respond quickly if any vulnerabilities are ever found. Unlike other tools like Joomla, you can also turn on auto-updates to automatically update your software to its latest version. This will apply any security patches and protect your site from potential vulnerabilities.
And since WordPress is so flexible, you can use any number of top security solutions to further safeguard and protect your website. While there are lots of great options out there, Jetpack Security is a complete WordPress security tool, providing a range of features all in one plugin.
In addition to the real-time backups we discussed a moment ago, you’ll also benefit from:
- Automatic malware scans: Jetpack uses an always-updated database of known malware and suspicious indicators to spot any problems on your site. It scans your files 24/7 and sends you an instant alert if anything is found so you can take care of it right away.
- Downtime monitoring: Large companies can’t afford downtime. Find out the second your site goes down so you can troubleshoot and get it back up again quickly.
- Two-factor authentication: Along with their account information, require administrators to enter a one-time code sent to their mobile device each time they log in.
- An activity log: Keep track of every action taken on your site and find out who performed it and when. This is great for monitoring activity from various team members and also identifying the source of any problems. For example, if your site goes down, you might be able to identify that the cause was a plugin update. You can also use this to restore a backup from right before a hack or other issue occurred.
- Spam prevention: Automatically filter comments and contact form submissions so that annoying and dangerous spam never reaches the front of your site.
- Brute force attack protection: Block hackers who try to get into your site by trying thousands of passwords per second.
When you’re running an enterprise site, security is more important than ever. Every minute your site is down or compromised means lost revenue and a damaged reputation. And if you hand customer or client information over to malicious actors, it could be devastating.
But putting your trust in a platform like WordPress — which understands and optimizes for security at a high level — and taking advantage of resources like Jetpack Security enable you to protect your site and sleep well at night.
3. Enterprise content management support
Content is at the heart of many enterprise websites. It educates clients and customers, keeps you top of mind, and is integral for a variety of marketing strategies. So it’s important that the CMS you choose enables you to create beautiful, effective content easily and quickly.
That’s exactly what WordPress does. Creating beautiful pages and blog posts is simple thanks to the built-in block editor. You can add all sorts of elements — paragraphs, images, videos, columns, social media feeds, calls to action, and more — to a post just by dragging and dropping it.
And managing content is just as easy. You can create user roles for your various team members, restricting their level of access to just what they need to fulfill their role. For example, your marketing manager might have full administrator-level access, while content writers may just be able to load their own post into the dashboard without making any other changes.
Speaking of the WordPress dashboard — it acts as a central hub for your website and content management. There, you can add and edit your posts, respond to comments, schedule your posts to publish, and more.
WordPress VIP takes things one step further for enterprise sites, adding powerful and agile content marketing and management capabilities.
What does this mean exactly? WordPress VIP helps you respond quickly and adapt to the frequently-changing market. Here are some things you can accomplish:
- Create custom publishing workflows.
- Integrate with tools you already use like Salesforce. If there’s not a ready-made integration, you can take advantage of the WordPress API to create one.
- Define customer structures and taxonomies for your content.
- Add plugins for Accelerated Mobile Pages, Progresssive Web Apps, and Web Stories.
- Take advantage of a platform that automatically scales to accommodate traffic spikes.
- Dive into in-depth analytics, with real-time data, conversion attribution, and audience segmentation.
Learn more about the WordPress enterprise platform.
4. An abundance of top-quality developers
WordPress is extremely developer-friendly, with endless opportunities for customization. It’s an open-source platform, so developers have full access to all of the code so they can customize it to meet your exact needs. They can also use the powerful WordPress REST API to connect your website to any third-party tools that you use for appointments, client relationship management, marketing, and more.
And because WordPress is so popular, there’s a wealth of top-quality developers available to assist with any needs that you have. Want a custom-built site with very specific requirements? There’s a developer for that. Need something to maintain your enterprise website on a weekly basis? There’s someone who can help with that, too.
Looking for an eCommerce-specific developer? Check out the WooExperts marketplace, with agencies personally vetted by WooCommerce.
5. Extensive flexibility and scalability
As your company grows, you want your website software to be able to accommodate a lot more traffic, more users, and any additional functionality that you might need.
Say you’re using WordPress as a static website for your service-based business. But, as you grow, you decide to add a forum for your customers, an option to book appointments online, and an online store for supplementary merchandise. You can add all of those tools to your existing site without having to switch platforms or craft any complicated code.
WordPress also enables you to choose any hosting provider that you’d like. This means you can find a plan that suits your needs and scales to accommodate your website traffic. You can also choose a plan that includes extras like a super-fast CDN, caching tools, and staging sites for testing changes.
Since WordPress is completely free, you’re not nickel and dimed each time you get more site visitors or list more products.
Finally, WordPress code is regularly checked and updated with scalability in mind. A global team works to update the software to meet the latest standards in performance, accessibility, and more. All of this combined means that you can trust WordPress for your enterprise site, no matter how much you grow.
6. Easy customization and usability
A lot of the benefits we’ve talked about already go back to the same thing — customization and usability. Thanks to the huge library of available free and premium plugins, you can add any sort of functionality you’d like to your site and meet any need that your enterprise has.
You can also choose from a variety of themes that help dictate the design of your site. Work with something super flexible and customizable or choose a theme with pre-made demos and switch out content related to your business.
And if you have a variety of team members who contribute to your website, the onboarding process is much simpler than with other enterprise CMS options. Without any code or development knowledge whatsoever, someone can create a new page or post using the block editor, edit colors or fonts with the Customizer, respond to comments, add new products, and more. Website maintenance and management is incredibly duplicatable and easy to scale.
What are the best WordPress plugins for enterprise sites?
Plugins add extra functionality to your website, and there are both free and premium options available. If you have a need, there’s almost certainly a plugin available to fill it. Let’s take a look at just a few great options for enterprise WordPress sites:
Jetpack is packed full of features that provide a ton of necessary functionality for large websites, from security and backups to performance, analytics, marketing, and more. But you can also disable any functionality that you’re not using to keep your site lightweight. There are both free and premium features available, including:
- Real-time backups: Save every single action that takes place and restore a backup in just a few clicks, even if your site is down.
- Additional security tools: Protect your site with downtime monitoring, malware scanning, brute force attack prevention, two-factor authentication, and more.
- Spam prevention: Get rid of offensive and distracting spam comments and contact form submissions.
- Site search: Implement super fast site search, with powerful filters and spelling correction.
- Video hosting: Speed up your videos while avoiding third-party ads.
- Analytics: Get insights into how your site is performing and who makes up your audience.
Jetpack also offers a WordPress CRM (customer relationship management tool), which is essential for any enterprise-level business. It enables you to manage your leads, prospects, clients, and customers, helping you grow your company and streamline your marketing efforts.
With Jetpack CRM, you can send quotes and invoices, see all of your contacts in one place, manage your sales funnel, view client history and interactions, assign leads to specific team members, and more. And you can do all of this directly in the WordPress dashboard!
And since Jetpack and Jetpack CRM are maintained by Automattic, the company behind WordPress.com, you can benefit from seamless integration, simple setup, and world-class support.
WooCommerce is the go-to eCommerce solution for WordPress, providing everything you need to sell online — product listings, cart and checkout pages, payment solutions, and more. It’s maintained by Automattic and is built to scale, with no limit on number of products or sales. The best part? It’s completely free.
It’s also super flexible, just like WordPress, and offers a library of free and premium extensions that provide tons of additional functionality. Want to sync inventory with your warehouse? Integrate with Facebook or Google Shopping? Sell in multiple currencies? There’s an extension for that.
And you can sell more than just physical items, too. Offer digital downloads, memberships, subscriptions, bookings, accommodations, wholesale products, and more. Or combine any of those to create your own custom solution.
WooCommerce also integrates seamlessly with Jetpack CRM and a variety of other marketing tools to make your life just a little easier.
OptinMonster is a powerful tool for converting leads and capturing email subscribers. You can create a huge variety of pop-up types, including:
- Lightboxes: Traditional style pop-ups you can use to display announcements and sales or capture email addresses
- Floating bars: Sticky bars in your header or footer that are perfect for sales, important messages, free shipping notices, and more
- Spin a wheel popups: A fun concept that allows visitors to spin a wheel to win a randomized coupon code
- Inline signup forms: Perfect to insert in the middle of blog posts and other content
There are endless ways you can use this plugin. And you can craft all of your pop-ups with a drag-and-drop builder that keeps things super simple. It even integrates with your favorite tools, like Campaign Monitor, HubSpot, Drip, and more. There’s a free version available, along with a premium option that includes additional features.
LiveChat is a feature-rich tool that enables you to add a chat box to your enterprise WordPress site. You can add 24/7 support, with automatic quick replies to frequently asked questions, and even send targeted messages to visitors based on the actions they take on your site.
While the plugin itself is free, you do need a paid LiveChat account to activate its features.
5. Yoast SEO
Yoast SEO is a plugin specifically designed to help you implement search engine optimization strategies across your site. Without having to edit code, you can make changes to your sitemap, edit meta descriptions and titles for posts, pages, and custom post types, update indexing settings, and more.
For each page or post, you can insert the keyword that you’re targeting and Yoast will generate a list of suggestions for each one. For example, it might advise you to use your keyword more frequently, increase the length of your content, add more external links, and include alt text for your images.
The premium version of the plugin has additional features like link suggestions and content quality analyses.
Adding a knowledge base to your website can be extremely beneficial, whether you’re using it for product documentation, service documents, or employee handbooks. Echo Knowledge Base makes it easy to create that documentation, organize it by type, order it based on a variety of factors, and more. You can even add a search bar to make it easy for customers to use.
Like many of the other plugins here, there is both a free and premium version available, with varying features.
You can use a business directory for a variety of purposes — display all the members of your team, showcase everyone in your club or organization, or maintain an internal staff directory. And the Connections Business Directory plugin is a free plugin that makes creating one easy and fast. You can even extend its capabilities with add-ons for creating extra fields, sending marketing messages, and more.
WPML is a multilingual tool that helps you translate your content and display your website in multiple languages. This, of course, is extremely beneficial if your enterprise business works with clients and customers across the globe.
You can either manually translate content yourself, use the automatic translation tool, or send your text to WPML’s trusted translation partners. And the tool can translate everything from paragraphs and headings to alt text, widgets, menus, product data, and text in plugins and admin screens.
WPML is a premium plugin, with several plans based on the features you need.
This plugin offers a set of tools that level up your publishing process within WordPress, including:
- An editorial calendar to help you plan and schedule content
- Custom post statuses that you can set based on your specific process
- Editorial comments to facilitate discussion between team members
- The ability to group posts into a series
- Custom viewing and editing permissions
- Publishing checklists and to-do lists
You can purchase features separately or bundled together.
And remember — these are just a handful of the great WordPress plugins for enterprise sites. You can check out free options in the WordPress.org repository, or find premium plugins across a variety of reputable marketplaces. Our article on the must-have plugins for WordPress is also a good starting point.
Real-world examples of WordPress enterprise websites
Businesses of all niches and sizes can use WordPress. Let’s look at real-world examples of WordPress enterprise websites to give you a better idea of some possibilities!
ISC provides industrial products for equipment manufacturers and other companies. Built with WordPress and WooCommerce, their site features hundreds of products alongside helpful resources like blog posts and FAQs. They also offer a live chat feature and request a quote functionality.
Nalgene is a popular outdoor brand that offers BPA-free water bottles and accessories. They used WordPress and WooCommerce to build their online store, which is packed full of items that can be easily accessed through a mega menu. Customers can even create their own custom water bottle directly on the site.
3. Dr. Scholl’s
Dr. Scholl’s is a globally-known foot care brand that sells shoe inserts and various treatments for feet problems — all using WooCommerce and WordPress. Customers can purchase products on their site or use the Where to Buy tool to find them in their local store. There’s also a robust blog available to visitors, along with a nifty tool that advises shoppers on the right insole for their specific needs.
The National Archives is the British government’s official online archive. It stores everything from wills and military service records to medals, passenger lists, and war diaries — more than 32 million descriptions of records, nine million of which are available for download. Visitors can search the large database and find detailed information about each record.
The New York Times is one of the most popular and prolific American newspapers, with a corporate website powered by WordPress. It provides information about the company behind the news articles, stories, and op-eds that are available to visitors across the globe.
Qualtrics is a research platform that offers customer, market, and employee insights. The American customer experience management company uses its WordPress website to provide cloud-based subscription software and collect customer feedback.
Frequently asked questions (FAQs) about using WordPress as an enterprise CMS
At this point, we’ve covered just about everything there is to know about using WordPress for enterprise. But to make sure we didn’t miss any important points, let’s wrap up with some FAQs!
What features should an enterprise CMS offer?
There are a handful of features that an enterprise CMS should offer. Security is one of the most important considerations. As your site grows, it’s more important than ever to protect it against hackers and other threats.
You’ll also need access to automated backups, scalable and flexible software, and premium support.
Is WordPress the best enterprise CMS?
Yes, WordPress is considered to be the best all-around enterprise CMS. But that’s not just because of its popularity. Since millions of people use WordPress every day, there are tons of plugins, themes, and developers who can help you customize your site.
WordPress is incredibly flexible, offering functionality for online stores, forums, directories, and more. It also integrates with a variety of tools your business may already use, like CRMs, marketing platforms, and warehouse solutions. WordPress is easy to customize and use, highly extensible and scalable, and secure by nature.
However, the specific CMS that you choose will depend on your unique business and needs.
How do I choose a host for my enterprise-level site?
The most important thing is ensuring that your enterprise WordPress site has a solid foundation. You can’t expect your website to perform at its best using subpar hosting.
So it’s essential to choose a company that offers WordPress enterprise-grade hosting, with servers and plans specifically optimized for large volumes of traffic. You’ll also want to look for 24/7 support and a guarantee of 99%+ uptime.
WordPress VIP is an excellent option for enterprise-based sites. It’s a managed WordPress hosting service from Automattic, with powerful features specifically for large businesses. It’s built on a solid, super fast foundation that responds effortlessly to traffic spikes and keeps your data super secure.
Start building your WordPress enterprise site today
WordPress is an excellent option for enterprise websites, offering an extensive library of plugins, themes, and tools, access to a plethora of developers and resources, and strong security and content management solutions.
With a reliable and fast hosting provider and plugins that meet your needs, you can grow your business with WordPress!
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