WordPress is an open-source content management system (CMS). It is based on PHP and MySQL. It started life in 2003 as a blogging platform, and that DNA is still seen in the CMS 13 years, and many versions later.
In its current version, WordPress is used as a scalable website CMS. Its open-source licencing has created a thriving community, with a vast array of plugins that can add to the capabilities of a website.
Ease of development
There are many reasons I enjoy working with WordPress. With any business, time management is essential to its success, and the more efficiencies you can find, the better the financial outcome. In the competitive space which is website development, those efficiencies are magnified due to the amount of competition.
Not only is it important to save time for yourself and your developers, it is also fundamental to save time for your clients. Time saved not only in a development phase, but also with updates, content management and any future extensions.
The popularity of WordPress helps to ensure ease of use across a range of users. From my perspective development is straightforward.
With WordPress the lines of frontend and backend development can be blurred. If you consider frontend to be straight HTML/CSS with a few pre-prepared jQuery plugins then you might need to learn a bit of PHP coding. Personally I feel that a developer should be familiar with basic PHP and some MySQL to be able to ensure an acceptable result.
Once a developer is familiar with the WordPress hooks, filters and actions; and has a good understanding of the extensive resources available for help and support, then the development should come naturally.
Ease of use for a developer spans further than the frontend development. WordPress is basic to set up, can be run faultlessly on a local environment. Proper process for updating, maintenance, Git, backup and deployment can all be set up rather quickly.
The template system that is in use can accommodate anything a designer can throw at it. Responsive, mobile first, single page, parallax or a truly custom design with custom content can fit into a WordPress template.
At Pugh Morgan we base our design thinking specifically around the brand that we working with, so the ability to implement custom designs and functionality are fundamental to our method.
Generally I would disregard themes as problematic when implementing a custom designs, however I do use them as a starting point. The best that I’ve come across to date are Skeleton Theme and HTML5 Blank. These give a basic blank canvas that can be built on to adapt to any design.