How Big Businesses Use WordPress for Publishing

Anil Gupta, CEO and co-founder of Multipoint.

With a market share of 64.2%, WordPress is the most popular content management system. All brands love it for its simplicity, scalability and Google friendliness.

Big companies like Microsoft use the same open source WordPress CMS as any hobby blogger or small business. But there is a huge difference in publishing workflow and overall WordPress usage between these user groups.

So what matters most to businesses that use WordPress to run their websites?

If you are a WordPress professional looking to work with such large clients, you need to understand the answer to this question.

In this article, I will recap the WordSesh workshop that I had the honor of being able to lead in May 2022. My ten-year experience allows me to identify seven critical factors that make up a successful enterprise WordPress setup.

Structure

Large companies often have complex business structures with multiple product lines, departments, and international operations. This complexity also results in a complex website structure.

So, the standard WordPress single instance that is suitable for small websites may not work well for enterprise websites.

I recommend exploring two implementations.

Multisite

You can create multiple websites (one main WordPress setup with multiple child websites) and decide how you want to structure the control and resource sharing between them.

For example, Ask Media Group leverages the multisite architecture of WordPress to host its web properties (including Ask.com) and gain flexibility to easily update content, design, and user sharing among themselves.

Headless

In a basic website, content creation and publishing are done in the same WordPress backend. In a headless implementation, either of these activities occurs elsewhere.

For example, Sneaker News has four WordPress websites and a mobile app under its brand. They use the headless architecture where they maintain a central repository of sneaker-related content (not on WordPress) and aggregate it to their web properties using the REST API.

Compliance

With a huge customer base spanning multiple continents, there is a need to comply with various web regulations. For example, if your client operates in the EU, you will need to comply with GDPR, one of the strongest web privacy laws in the world.

CCPA, AODA, and ADA are other examples of compliances you may need to meet when working with corporate websites.

Although not a legal mandate, advising clients to make their website accessible to all user groups is the right thing to do.

Plugins like accessiBe and CookiePro help tick all the boxes to meet accessibility, GDPR, and cookie compliance requirements. You can also use this handy W3C list to find the right tools for your client’s compliance needs.

Speed ​​of publication

The sheer volume of data, in terms of editorial team size, monthly visitors, and page count, adds complexity to the business publishing process.

For editorial teams in media and news organizations (where things are time-sensitive), speed of publication is a critical indicator of success. In fact, 80% of the companies I’ve worked with rate publishing speed as their biggest frustration with other CMSs.

So how can you improve publishing speed?

I recommend simplifying the content creation experience as much as possible.

For example, Wonderwall.com, a popular celebrity news website, uses a custom drag-and-drop Gutenberg interface for its media library where users can quickly find images (along with meta information such as celebrity biodata). ) they need to publish articles faster.

Another effective way to speed up publishing time is to use reusable blocks in Gutenberg.

Performance

Every brand needs a fast loading website. This is because site speed strongly influences user experience and Google rankings, and therefore conversion rates and revenue.

But the impact of a slow-loading website is far greater for businesses. And the complexity of a business website makes it more difficult to achieve optimal performance.

In particular, media websites (like TechCrunch) serve a global audience, with ad revenue being their main monetization strategy (meaning lots of resource draining ad integrations).

While the usual speed optimization best practices also apply to business websites, I recommend paying close attention to these three key areas:

• Write clean, optimized code that meets all coding standards.

• Invest in a managed hosting platform (like WordPress VIP) designed for business websites.

• Use a fast content delivery network for multimedia websites.

Security

Corporate websites handle sensitive user information. It is their responsibility to protect the privacy of their users.

Being well-known brands, these websites tend to be obvious and often easy targets for hackers. Thus, security is a key concern for corporate clients.

I recommend approaching security with a two-pronged approach, protecting the system and protecting the user. This includes:

• Follow coding best practices when developing custom themes and plugins.

• Implement a secure WordPress setup using plugins like Wordfence.

• Use a reliable hosting server with the highest level of security, such as WordPress VIP.

• Enforce two-factor authentication (2FA) and strong passwords for all user logins.

• Provide cybersecurity training to users on how to use WordPress securely.

Integrations

Business teams use a variety of third-party tools to monitor various business key performance indicators.

They often need to integrate their tech stack with their WordPress website to streamline things like:

• Firewall

• Digital Asset Management (DAM)

• User analysis

• Marketing

• Security

I recommend solidifying your REST API knowledge to create custom plugins to integrate tools that don’t have a plugin.

Support

Companies run a mission-critical activity. If the website encounters an error that results in downtime, the damage can be severe in terms of brand reputation, lost revenue, and more.

Thus, reliable support and maintenance is essential for enterprise WordPress customers. As a WordPress professional, your customer service strategy should include:

• Training material for editorial teams on the proper use of the WordPress backend.

• SLA-level support, such as 24/7 technical support in the customer’s time zone.

If you’re progressing to land-based enterprise clients or already working with large WordPress websites, make sure you and your team focus on these seven crucial areas.


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