What You Should Know Before Hiring A WordPress Developer | Reggio Digital: WordPress Managed Hosting and Maintenance

What You Should Know Before Hiring A WordPress Developer

WordPress is one of the most popular online content management systems in the world. According to W3Techs, WordPress is currently powering 43% of all websites on the internet. Businesses and individuals use WordPress as the foundation for their customized websites. The platform can be used for storefronts, blogs, portfolios, and more. In fact, there are over 800 million different WordPress websites as of 2022. If you are considering building or developing a WordPress website, you may also be interested in hiring a WordPress developer. If so, you’ve come to the right place. In this comprehensive guide, we explain the basics of what WordPress is, what you need to know before hiring a WordPress developer, and how to find the support you need.

Simply put, WordPress is an open-source platform for building websites without having to write any code. In the past, WordPress was used as the premier blogging platform for writers on the web. However, it has now grown to become the system used for all kinds of websites. With its extensive library of plugins and themes, you can customize your WordPress site to be anything you want. This includes:

  • Portfolios
  • Resumes
  • Forums
  • Social Networks
  • Membership Sites
  • Business Websites
  • eCommerce Stores
  • And more!

The Benefits of Using WordPress

Users rely on WordPress over other platforms for a number of reasons. First and foremost, WordPress itself is free. This means that you can manage all the content and design of your website from an entirely free platform. However, in order to make your site discoverable online, you will still need a high-quality hosting service that provides features such as fast speeds and strong security.  

The WordPress interface is also intuitive and very easy to use. For some time, beginners have appreciated the ease with which WordPress enables you to get your first site up and running while providing you with a number of customization options. These customization features are another benefit of using WordPress. Their WordPress theme library is massive, including ready-made templates that you can instantly get up and running as the foundation for your site’s design. WordPress is also designed to help you achieve higher SEO performance. There are a number of plugins you can use that provide you with scores and detailed reports that show you exactly what changes you need to make in order to have your site appear higher in results.

Finally, WordPress sites can be configured to be highly secure. There are a number of advanced security plugins that provide the features and functionality you need to keep your site secure and running smoothly.

The Limitations of A WordPress Site

WordPress sites are heavily plugin-based. This means that you will likely need to download and install large numbers of plugins in order to get the specific features you want for your site. It can be difficult to manually remember to ensure that all of your plugins are kept up-to-date. An out-of-date plugin can present a security risk to your site, creating the possibility of a breach. Furthermore, if you want a feature that is not present in WordPress plugins, you will need to hire a WordPress developer to create one for you. This means additional costs and delays before you can put your site online.

Improperly configured WordPress sites can also create a sluggish and slow experience for users. This can create a poor impression of your business. WordPress doesn’t always remind you that large images or lots of words on a single page can impact your website speed. Unfortunately, it is quite easy to make a few small mistakes that end up completely ruining the speed of your WordPress site.

Finally, websites can simply go down without notice. If your website host only provides limited services, you may have to hire a professional services agency just to get your site back up and running. In the meantime, you could have lost thousands of dollars in sales as customers couldn’t find your site.

Ultimately, WordPress can be an incredibly versatile tool for building and designing websites.  Many of these downsides to WordPress can be countered by a high-quality WordPress hosting provider that provides development features.

What Is WordPress Development?

If you are looking for a WordPress developer, you should first understand the different types of WordPress development. As with any website development, design and construction are separated into front-end development and back-end development. Front-end development focuses on features and functionality that the user experiences when they interact with your site. This means styling, images, text, buttons, carousels, and interactive features. A Front-end developer might be brought in on a temporary basis to design a custom plugin that you can use to create a specific feature for your users.

By contrast, a back-end developer focuses on the server side of websites. These programmers have the experience and training necessary to ensure that your site is always online, operating smoothly, and is completely secure. Back-end developers maintain your databases and keep your plugins up-to-date. Although users may not be able to see or interact with the code written by a back-end developer, the successful functioning of your site is only possible with them.

There are certain other categories that you can divide WordPress development into as well. For example, if you are on a tight budget, you might want to look for a WordPress developer that specializes in short, affordable projects. These developers won’t do anything fancy, but they will get your site running. Moving up from there, you could also hire a custom WordPress developer who will take the time to provide you with a number of unique features that meet the needs of your business. This kind of development can be expensive. Additionally, there are also monthly WordPress management and maintenance services that you can invest in if you are only looking for those kinds of services.

Deciding what kind of WordPress development you need and want is one of the most important decisions you need to make when it comes to hiring a WordPress developer.

Should You Hire A WordPress Developer?

Are you sure you need a WordPress developer? It’s important to know when a task can be handled by someone with basic knowledge and when an expert contractor or service provider needs to be brought in. We have already mentioned that a WordPress developer can create custom features and functionality for you. A developer with experience can also keep your plugins up to date and maintain the security of your site. If your website has been performing poorly and you’re not sure why a WordPress developer can help you streamline it.

Finally, designing and building a smoothly operating website is time-consuming and challenging. Even with all of WordPress’s intuitive features, there are still a wide range of decisions to make and things to remember. If you are getting overwhelmed by the sheer number of options, it’s probably time to hire a WordPress developer.

How To Hire A WordPress Developer

It is possible to build a functional WordPress website yourself. However, a developer can help you make your site more unique to your business and help it to function with more speed and security. On the other hand, some developers charge outrageous fees, and it can be difficult to find a developer with the experience and skills you need. Hiring an inexperienced developer could cause major issues for your site and your business. However, by following these steps, you can get the support you need.

Step 1: Identify Your Needs

As with hiring any contractor, it’s important to have a clear plan before attempting to bring in assistance. Creating this plan and identifying your needs will also help you to communicate with your developer later on. If you are looking for a developer to build your entire website, you don’t need to get too detailed, but you will need to be able to clarify how many pages you want, what type they will need to be, and any specific features your site will need. On the other hand, if you are looking for maintenance and security services, you will lay out a plan for those needs as well.

Step 2: Create A Budget

Once you have a plan, you will then need a budget. The size of your budget will impact a number of things about the hiring process. For example, if you are in need of long-term maintenance and upkeep services, you will want an experienced developer, and you may want to hire them as a new employee of your company. However, if you are looking for a one-time service, such as a custom plugin, you may only want a contractor. Once you begin looking for developers on hiring sites, you may be surprised to find the wide variety of rates, with some developers charging well over $100 per hour. This is why you need to have a budget going in. The more experienced the developer, the higher the rate they’ll charge.

Step 3: Make A List Of Interview Questions

A key part of hiring for any role is knowing what to look for and what questions to ask when interviewing. Before you find your candidates, we recommend making a list of interview questions that you can refer to when your prospective new hires start coming in. You might ask questions such as:

  • What experience do you have working with WordPress?
  • Are you a back-end or front-end developer?
  • Do you know how to create a custom WordPress theme?
  • What is your communication style, and how do you take feedback?
  • What is your typical timeline for completing similar development projects?

Again, the kinds of questions you will ask will depend on the nature of your needs.

Step 4: Vet and Interview Candidates

Once candidates have applied to your job postings, it is time to vet and interview them. One of the key steps here is finding examples of their work. Also, look for reviews and testimonials from past clients. Sometimes, reviews can give you vital information on whether or not the candidate would be a good fit for your project or organization.

When interviewing candidates, pay attention to their communication and soft skills. Even if a developer has good technical skills, they must be able to communicate with you in order to hear and understand your needs. It is also critical that you are updated on the developer’s progress instead of just getting left in the dark the entire time. Finally, evaluate the pay expectations of the candidate before moving forward with the process.

Step 5: Ask For A Demo

Asking for a demo is another good idea when hiring a WordPress developer. Even if there are good examples of their work, you still need to know whether or not they can actually build the features and functionality you need. Once you have received the demo and are confident in their abilities as well as comfortable working with them, you can hire them and start your project.

What To Look For When Hiring A WordPress Developer

There are a few specific things to look for when hiring a WordPress developer that you should keep in mind.

First of all, look at their resume for evidence of their technical skills. Do they know SEO? Do they know databases? Furthermore, see if you can find out what programming languages they have mastered. Some popular languages in this space include PHP, CSS, Javascript, and HTML.

Secondly, ensure that the developer has the kind of experience you are looking for. For example, if you are interested in a back-end developer to make your site’s pages load faster, you may not want to hire a developer who is an expert in front-end graphic design.

Why Choosing The Right WordPress Hosting Solution Is Crucial

If you are looking for better performance for your site, expert support, and additional security services, you need Reggio Digital. Instead of dealing with all the hassle of finding and managing a new WordPress developer hire, you can get all kinds of development features as part of a complete WordPress hosting solution. Contact us today to learn more!

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