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WordPress: it’s not just for blogs anymore.

We’ve already discussed numerous times that you can use WordPress in a variety of ways Get Creative With WordPress - 5 Interactive Ways to Use the Platform Get Creative With WordPress - 5 Interactive Ways to Use the Platform There's quite a lot of ways you can use WordPress beyond simply using it as a blogging platform. We've already taken a look at a list of 5 things you might not have known you... Read More . We’ve written articles about it before, but every once in a while, we feel as though that- – as the WordPress platform evolves — we need to issue a refresher.

Below are six different ways to use WordPress that aren’t blogging. Nope, you don’t have to use WordPress to blog at all! Some of these ways you may know about, but you may very well not know about the others. That’s why we’re here to help.

Portfolios

I’m speaking from experience: I use WordPress as a portfolio for my video production work. Think of it as an “organic record” of your craft, one that you can consistently update to tell your story over a given period of time. Personally, I believe your best work is typically your most recent work (except in the most extreme cases). So even in a blog format, WordPress can accurately display your skills to potential clients.

portfolio

Alternatively, there are several WordPress themes out there that offer gallery functions to display your work as a whole. One page shows numerous thumbnails which lead to items such as photos, videos, and designs – pretty cool. Here are a few themes you may want to consider when wanting to develop a portfolio:

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E-Stores

E-commerce, e-commerce, e-commerce! People buy all sorts of things online these days, and even you can take part in the online business world. WordPress – despite its main functionality as a blogging platform – can also serve as a way to conduct e-commerce fairly easily. Ranging from features to list your products in an e-store format all the way to the ability to conduct transactions, WordPress can serve your every e-commerce need.

product

The WordPress e-Commerce plugin is a great way to get started with developing themes that incorporate the ability to sell your wares online – plus, its developers offer tons of video tutorials and user-backed support. On the other hand, you may want to go the easy route and utilize a pre-built theme for your virtual storefront:

Social Networks & Forums

Ever heard of BuddyPress? Basically, it’s an awesome little plug-in that converts your WordPress site into its own little social network. It won’t be the most fantastic social network you’ve ever used (I mean, it’s no MySpace), but for what it is the plug-in is pretty useful. With features like profile creation, messaging, and dozens of other awesome social networking plug-ins, you can develop whatever social network you need in a familiar CMS platform.

This type of plug-in would be best suited for those of you generating a community for your school, workplace, church, or anything else similar. Realistically, you aren’t going to make the next Facebook using WordPress. It would take too much coding, server space, and maintenance to do something like this. However, if you are wanting to generate something a bit more local, then BuddyPress Make A Complete Community Site With Buddypress (& WordPress) Make A Complete Community Site With Buddypress (& WordPress) BuddyPress gives you complete user profiles, activity streams, and groups. If you’re considering a community site, this needs to be the first free project you check out. BuddyPress is completely free and open source. Just... Read More might be your best bet.

buddypress

Here are a few themes well-suited for the BuddyPress plugin:

If you aren’t all about social networking, then forums may be your best bet. Personally, I love forums. I love them so much. Finding out that WordPress also supported a plugin that turned sites into forums 3 Of The Best WordPress Forum Plugins 3 Of The Best WordPress Forum Plugins At some point, your WordPress blog gets popular, and then people start crying out for a community. I wrote before about BuddyPress, which is one approach to take that effectively turns your site into a... Read More was pretty awesome, too. Dubbed BBPress, the plugin is equally powerful as BuddyPress, and it totally converts your site into a fully functioning forum that you and several others can socialize on.

bbpress

Landing Pages & Resumes

You know all about Flavors.me and About.me, but what if you want something with a little more punch? Perhaps you want a landing page just like these sites, but you also want a link to your blog along with multiple pages. Fortunately, WordPress allows you to select a static page to be your front landing page. Depending on you want, you could make this a bio, a contact page, or whatever you want!

staticpages

It’s super easy to do, too. Just go into your Reading settings, and you can select a page from the panel to be your front page. Aside from this, the WordPress site will function as per usual. Your blog will even function as normal – the URL just won’t land on the latest post. Furthermore, you could use your landing page to display your resume. Fancy, fancy.

Whether you are incorporating your resume into your website or using it as a landing page, WordPress is one of the best ways to display it. It’s easy to put it online, to update it, and to share. With that said, you need to modify your resume Restyle Your Resume For Instant Results On The Job Market Restyle Your Resume For Instant Results On The Job Market Today, I'm not going to share with you the golden secret to resumés that will guarantee you the job. That would be stupid. However, I can guarantee that your resume will be ahead of a... Read More to fit the online world. Fortunately, we’ve already got a ton of tips ready for you here on MakeUseOf.

What other ways do you use WordPress? Have you ever considered the above uses?

  1. Alexis C
    September 29, 2013 at 8:08 pm

    How about as image hoster?

  2. Craig Christianson
    September 23, 2013 at 12:25 pm

    Nice website and useful article but I only count 4 ways to use WordPress not 6. What did I miss cause your ideas are very helpful!

  3. Chris
    September 22, 2013 at 8:40 pm

    For e-commerce, the free plugin "Woocommerce" is fantastic - it's user friendly and highly customisable, and can be extended with premium add-ons. The WP E-commerce plugin mentioned above is terrible in comparison. I'm a professional developer, and I find clients using Woocommerce very rarely have issues or questions. If you want to keep it simple though, the plugin "Simple Cart & Buy Now" is great, as you just insert a single shortcode into a page and you're done!

  4. Michael Eisenwasser
    September 11, 2013 at 4:07 am

    Thanks for mentioning BuddyBoss. I'm the owner and creator of that theme :)

  5. shani B
    September 9, 2013 at 7:08 pm

    Can i use word press as a job listings site, where people can also upload their resumes or even a video file?
    is there a theme for that?

  6. James B
    September 3, 2013 at 9:23 am

    For a more in-depth look on unique uses for WordPress: http://www.makeuseof.com/tag/5-wordpress/

  7. Gatz
    September 3, 2013 at 7:50 am

    I personally prefer Joomla. It offers more power and flexibility in setting everything the way I want it. But of course WordPress has it's advantages and is really good for some tasks. All these CMS quite complete eachother

  8. Phoenix S
    September 3, 2013 at 2:26 am

    These tips are timely and relevant to the task of setting up a WordPress site for my small business. I had already implemented a landing page, but will definitely want a forum and a gallery/portfolio. Thank you.

  9. A. I. Sajib
    September 3, 2013 at 1:23 am

    I hear BBpress, when used in a large community, can later become slow and have too much pressure on the database. Is this really good for a forum targeting an already-existing large number of users?

    • James B
      September 3, 2013 at 9:24 am

      That's true of anything based around WordPress. It takes a hell of a lot of caching to keep MakeUseOf running, for instance. Anyone logged in is going to see uncached pages most of the time, so you need to think about strategies to deal with that.

    • A. I. Sajib
      September 3, 2013 at 2:52 pm

      My busiest WordPress site receives only around 160,000 pageviews every month, and thankfully it is still running well. It's a blog, not a forum. I use third-party image hosting platforms (such as Google+ most of the time) to save bandwidth and processing power. I guess that helps a lot.

      It's sad that WordPress just doesn't work great out of the box with caching plugins installed. I mean even if you install, it's gonna take more serious customization to keep it going.

  10. Reza G
    September 3, 2013 at 12:54 am

    Nice article, thanks.
    These days BuddyPress is not as reliant on themes, works pretty well on any.

  11. A. Reader
    September 2, 2013 at 11:13 pm

    One Comment - Write a Commment - Want to check your spelling?

    • Joshua Lockhart
      September 2, 2013 at 11:38 pm

      Looking into it ; )

      Thanks for catching it.

  12. Stian H
    September 2, 2013 at 7:16 pm

    Great article. I would like to ad another great way to use WordPress; as a CMS. I have with great success given clients the choice to use WordPress as a CMS. It's really simple for newbies. It's just to log in, write and push "publish" as long as it's set up properly.

    • Joshua Lockhart
      September 2, 2013 at 11:10 pm

      Yep! That's a fantastic use for it. Are you a designer?

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