WP Briefing: Episode 72: Why Your Website Matters

In the latest WordPress Briefing, Josepha Haden Chomphosy explores the reasons for choosing a website supporting your digital presence, covering topics from trust-building to professionalism to owning a unique online domain.

Credits

Host: Josepha Haden Chomphosy
Editor: Dustin Hartzler
Logo: Javier Arce
Production: Brett McSherry
Song: Fearless First by Kevin MacLeod

Show Notes

Getting Started With WordPress: Get Set Up

Creating a 4-page business website

Download WordPress 6.4.3

Small List of Big Things

Early Opportunities to Test WordPress 6.5 

Call for Mentees & Mentors: Contributor Mentorship Program Cohort #2

Data Liberation in 2024 

WordCamp Asia 2024 Tickets

Transcripts

[00:00:00] Josepha: Hello, everyone, and welcome to the WordPress Briefing, the podcast where you can catch quick explanations of the ideas behind the WordPress open source project, some insight into the community that supports it, and get a small list of big things coming up in the next two weeks. I’m your host, Josepha Haden Chomphosy. Here we go. 

[00:00:29] (Intro music) 

[00:00:39] Josepha: My friends, it is February. For many of us, that means we’ve already fallen off track on our New Year’s resolutions, but not you, intrepid WordPresser, especially you, newly found WordPresser who is still on the fence about needing a website, and I get it. It seems like a lot of work, and even if you shoot for the moon, it’s not clear which star you’ll land on.

[00:01:01] Josepha: It feels easier to open a Facebook page or launch a new Instagram account, get a channel going on YouTube, but here’s a secret they won’t tell you. It’s just as much work. And even if you crack the code on today’s algorithm, you don’t own anything you build there, not the content, not the audience. So if you’re gonna make the effort to build anyway, why not build it in your space? It can be scary to take that kind of time.

So, if you’re not convinced yet, let me give you a few other reasons why you should choose a website over some social media thing. I’ve got a list here, and they build on one another, really. But the first thing is a website covers the five W’s: who, what, when, where, and why. It’s basic information, I know, but it’s what people need to know when they’re looking at your product or company.

The phone book, whether you had the yellow pages or the white pages, those are long gone, but that doesn’t mean that the need for that information is gone. When people are researching the right service or product to solve their problems, they’re getting online to do it. So you should be there, and your information should be easy to find. 

[00:02:12] Josepha: Which brings us right into item number two.

When people know these things about you when, they know who you are, what you’re doing, when to get to you, where you are, why you’re doing it. Having that information increases trust and makes you look more professional, and I’ve seen that be counterintuitive for folks. I mean, it’s a digital asset, after all. But overwhelmingly, we see consumers who are well-researched by the time they get to us. They’ve looked at all of your competitors already and checked to see if you are a human, if you share some of their values, and how you manage waste or, complaints, or praise.

You can never know who is looking for you. So, making it all as clear and easy to see as possible makes you more trustworthy. And the more trustworthy and professional you look, then number three, the more chances you have to bring in good leads and contacts, which can turn into sales or, at the very least, a sales opportunity. And it’s important to have good leads and contacts. Right?

[00:03:17] Josepha: If you have your information out there on a website, then people can sort of prequalify themselves. If they already have a sense for whether they are a good fit for your product or service, then fingers crossed. You can spend most of your time with people who are making serious inquiries.

And coming in at four, you can do this any way you want with words or art, NFTs of your latest work, or video tutorials. It lets you tell your story in ways that other mediums necessarily have to limit.

And, importantly, you can still do those things elsewhere. Right? But having essentially a digital home online that is yours, keep your stuff online in a place you own and operate, then draw people to you through those other channels. Make it all work together.

[00:04:07] Josepha: I have a fifth thing, mostly because I like lists of either three or five, and the list I had was four, but also because it’s true. Number five is still true. 

Getting domains is fun. You’ve got something to share with the world, and your domain name is title and, story, and first impression. And isn’t it great instead of having to say you can find me at LinkedIn, slash in slash, etc.?

You can say something quick and memorable. Josepha.blog or whatever it is you registered. Getting domains is fun. It’s the fifth thing, and I tried to act like it was no big deal.

But, also, it’s like one of the first things you have to do, and it’s kind of a big deal. You can have your own domain, and it can say a lot for you. So there you have it, some basic and not-so-basic reasons why you should have a website. If you are convinced or at least intrigued, I’ve got a few tutorials that can help you get started that I’ll link in the show notes. 

[00:05:03] (Music interlude)

[00:05:11] Josepha: Which brings us now to our small list of big things.

I have four big things for you today: four-ish. So, first things first, I have some early opportunities for y’all to test our next major release. Our next major release is WordPress 6.5. The target release date is March 26th. But coming up here on February 13th, we have Beta 1 scheduled. That’s an early opportunity for you to provide feedback. A lot of the features that we have coming in this release are big, and they’re moving quite quickly. And so, if you are already a routine WordPress user, pop on over into the core channel or onto make.WordPress.org/core and get your hands on that beta release. We could use a lot of feedback from you on that.

The second thing that I have is that the second cohort of the Contributor Mentorship Program has opened up, and we’re calling for participants whether you want to be mentored or mentor somebody. We are accepting applications for both. This is a fantastic opportunity for experienced contributors to help other people learn how to do this. And also, if you are learning to contribute to open source and to WordPress for the first time, I know it can be scary. It took me many, many tries to really get started. And so this is a great opportunity for anyone who is trying to contribute in a new way, in a different way.

[00:06:35] Josepha: The third thing that I have is there’s a post up about Data Liberation in 2024. This is one of our big focuses for the year.

A web where being locked into a system should be a thing of the past, and migrating your site to WordPress or around the WordPress ecosystem should be doable with essentially 1-click, and, so, there’s a lot of work that we’re doing there. You can find it on WordPress.org/data-liberation. There will be a link to that in our show notes, but also, there is a lot of work that has to be done, not only to get those resources together but also some companion tools to the resources. So head on over there, take a look at what’s out there. And if you have some stuff to contribute, share that too. 

[00:07:21] Josepha: And my fourth thing, my final thing, is that WordCamp Asia is about a month away. So you still have time to plan your attendance. If that’s something that you want to do, head on over to asia.wordcamp.org to learn more.

And that, my friends, is your small list of big things. Don’t forget to follow us on your favorite podcast app or subscribe directly on WordPress.org/news. You’ll get a friendly reminder whenever there’s a new episode. If you liked what you heard today, share it with a fellow WordPresser or specifically for this one; if you liked what you heard, share it with a fellow collaborator whether they know WordPress or not. But if you had questions about what you heard, you can share those with me at wpbriefing@WordPress.org. I’m your host, Josepha Haden Chomphosy. Thanks for tuning in today for the WordPress Briefing, and I’ll see you again in a couple of weeks. 

[00:08:10] (Music outro)

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