WordPress: it’s not just for blogs anymore.
We’ve already discussed numerous times that you can use WordPress in a variety of ways. 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.
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.
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:
- Avion ($40)
- Gridster Lite (Free)
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.
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:
- Sell ($55)
- Wootique (Free)
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 might be your best bet.
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 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.
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!
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 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?