Is It better to Develop a Website From Scratch or Use WordPress?

What is the main purpose of your website and do you aim for career growth as a developer yourself?

  1. If you are a business owner looking for a small business website, WordPress will probably suffice for starters.
  2. If you are a developer looking for the right programming stack, then it depends on your incentive and the expected results after the website is live.

In case you want to promote any services of yours without focusing on development too much, WordPress is also a logical choice. Easy to set up, a good portfolio of available templates, massively extensible.

If you want to study programming along the way, figure out whether you want to profile in WordPress. The WordPress industry is fairly broad and the platform powers 29% of the web. But it’s a competitive space known for its “race to the bottom” in terms of pricing services and products. It may take a while to gain experience and reputation in the space in order to price your services and generate decent margins.

Teaching Yourself Programming

For studying purposes, I’d focus on studying computer science first – this entails algorithms and data structures, operating systems, networks, computer architectures. Those are crucial for a developer eager to build professional software solutions.

Whatever web platform you build, it runs on a set of a web server and a database server handled by an OS. They consume resources from your physical or cloud server – such as CPU, RAM, or I/O operations. There’s the bandwidth that goes in transferring data back and forth. Failing to understand what’s going on under the hood would result in a non-productive code that won’t scale in the long run.

Thus, you can start with the basics first and teach yourself some PHP programming. Then you can build platform-independent solutions or develop on top of the WordPress Core.

Starting With WordPress Development

If you pick WordPress, make sure your background lets you extend the platform indefinitely – through custom plugins, 3rd party integrations, scaling the infrastructure whenever needed. Installing a bunch of plugins isn’t professional programming and won’t help you rank as a proficient developer in the space.

Here’s a detailed explanation about the difference between educated developers and site builders: The Disconnect Between a WordPress Install and Developed Solutions – WP Elevation