The ultimate web design guide: Can I use WordPress for an enterprise level website?

Insights, Wordpress

In this article we're going to discuss if WordPress can be used to build an enterprise level website? The answer is, yes, it can, however it's not necessarily how you will find most WordPress websites are built on the internet today. 

Many mid to high level web design agencies are using WordPress to build enterprise level websites, with many of the websites that you see in the SME built with tools such as Elementor and other page builder plug-ins that are fantastic. They help you to build sites quickly and give you full control even What-You-See-Is-What-You-Get (WYSIWYG), access for design and changes. 

However, the big problem with a lot of these builders is that they do not have any way of incorporating version control like a Git repository such as GitHub or Bitbucket.

What can version control do for my website?

What version control can do for your website is to make sure that every line of code from the beginning of a website build through to today can be tracked. This is important for quality control but also for an enterprise of the website. What this means is that you can have more than one developer working on your website at any one time. Most other WordPress sites have a single CSS file, which means that if one person's working on it, another person is unable to work on that same file and it cannot be overwritten. When utilising version control, you can go one step further and make your build even easier with SCSS and break your CSS file down into separate sections, so that multiple web developers can work on your builder at any one time.

It is important to mention that this is not the standard way of how many people will build their WordPress sites. This is the process you will find in good web development agencies, and it's also where you get the speed of development for larger sites. This means that you could have any number of developers working on a site at any given time, all working on separate sections, and that they all are able to upload without having clashes. An additional element that you would be looking for if you are building an enterprise level website is you would aim to have a system that provides a staging development and live site workflow, so that developers can put their changes up on a development site and they can be sent off to you for approval before they're pushed to the live website.

When using WordPress, this gets awfully complicated if you're just using a standard builder such as Elementor or WPBakery. However if you are using advanced custom fields, which is a method that many web developers use, then a staging development and live site flow can be easily achieved. Again, this workflow adds to the quality that you can deliver as a business, and is why this method is often used for enterprise level websites. 

This process is often talked about as immutable deployment, and this is where the code is replaced rather than just updated, as it uses the dev testing and live site workflow. In addition to these features that can be added to WordPress, you can add enterprise level security to WordPress as well using things like Cloudflare and also a quality WordPress firewalls such as Wordfence.

You can have quite a robust security system in place using two-factor authentication. It's quite possible to also take WordPress to a whole new level and build what's called a headless website. Whilst it sounds like something out of a horror story, actually it's an exciting new trend in web development. When a website is built in this way, the WordPress backend, the admin section is used as a data store that then provides the information that's going to be presented on the pages, but those pages are separately built, and using languages such as Gatsby, JS, NextJS, and Nuxt. These different languages are designed to create fast loading websites and to significantly help with page load speed. 

So while most WordPress websites are not built at an enterprise level, it's more than possible to build an enterprise level WordPress website.

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