WordPress is on a road to transformation. What started as a blogging platform has turned into a fully developed Content Management System (CMS). However, it does not stop here. WordPress is now slowly making its way as an app engine. If you are looking for reasons to migrate to the powerful WordPress platform, this blog post will provide you all the inspiration you need.
WordPress as a CMS Platform
Who knows the capabilities of WordPress as a platform better than Automatic. While it is trying to attract enterprises towards it through WordPress VIP and WordPress Enterprise, a recent initiative shows it is also interested in specific niche websites.
WordPress.com’s CEO Toni Schneider associates it as an attempt to attract businesses that still create custom websites instead of using a CMS application. The company has released a set or “bundle” of templates that makes it easy to create and manage websites.
WordPress for Weddings – Ideal for celebrity weddings and event management
WordPress for Musicians – A complete solution for people of music industry
WordPress for Cities – Take tourism to the next level
WordPress for Restaurants – Covering all the needs of restaurant
Features in these bundles can be upgraded and customized by paying extra cost. Fans of open-source WordPress.org can find several themes and plugins [See: 9 WordPress Plugins Favored By Developers and Agencies] that can help them create websites with same capabilities.
WordPress as an Application Framework
Third party developers have extended the capabilities of WordPress to such an extent that advanced requirements like e-Commerce can be fulfilled through it. There are examples of amazing, yet sensible uses of WordPress. A few of these are highlighted below:
1) Learning Management System (LMS):
Moodle is the de facto ruler when it comes to e-learning systems. But in recent years, we have seen some WordPress plugins that can give you all the capabilities of Moodle inside your WordPress Dashboard. This means educational institutes can prepare courses, lessons and tests the same way they do it on Moodle.
Having integrated blogging capabilities gives an edge to WordPress as an LMS. Some of the popular LMS plugins include LearnDash, Sensei, WP Courseware and Train-Up!
2) Customer Relationship Manager (CRM)
There are many plugins out there that can help you integrate SalesForce, Zoho or SugarCRM with your WordPress website. On the other hand, plugins like WP CRM provide you with an adaptable customer relationship manager built on WordPress.
Similarly, another freemium plugin WP Invoice helps you handle billing within your WordPress. Together these two are extremely helpful for startups and small businesses.
If you want to create your own knowledge based web portal like Wikipedia, you can use the open-source MediaWiki software to get started. This extremely powerful and flexible software is used by many non-profit organizations and universities. Looking at the importance of wikis, several developers have released third-party plugins for WordPress. The most popular of them is WordPress Wiki Plugin by WPMUDEV. It allows you to create WordPress based wiki sites.
Another plugin named Encyclopedia is an all-in-one plugin that allows you to create wikis, encyclopedias, dictionaries and knowledge bases. Its free version has very limited functionality; however, it can be extended by purchasing a pro account.
4) Social Network:
There are many plugins built on WordPress that can help you create a public or private social network. Popular amongst them is BuddyPress where you can create user profiles, groups and activity streams together with an instant messenger. P2, which is created by Automattic, comes with many handy plugins that can transform your blog into a social media minisite. P2 comes along with comprehensive privacy settings which provides maximum control in your hand.
Another worth mentioning is Mingle. This plugin has widgets that even allow you to send friend requests, create photo albums and even collect donations from their profile page. Interesting, isn’t it?
The list does not end here. Organizations have built intranet, project management system, job portals, spreadsheets applications, and many other business solutions using WordPress. Share with us if your organization has created or is using WordPress as an application platform.
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