In short: WordPress is the world’s most popular content management system (CMS), helping you create, manage and share your content on the web. WordPress has both a hosted (WordPress.com) and self-hosted (WordPress.org) version.
WordPress is open source, which means you are free to use it without paying anyone a license fee. In addition, there are hundreds of people all over the world working on it. More than most commercial platforms.
WordPress pluginsSince WordPress is the most popular CMS in the world, there is a wide variety of plug-ins and widgets to extend the system’s core functionality. The basic function of these plugins is often free – while a more complete version is paid.
Any special requirement your company may face, most probably has already been developed and commercialised as a plug-in.
WordPress themesWordPress furthermore makes use of themes (sometimes also referred to as templates), ready-to-use designs and layouts that you can install and activate for your WordPress powered site. WordPress then functions as the main platform, handling your content (posts, pages, and so on) - while the theme displays that content into your layout of choice.
Most themes can at least be slightly adapted (colours, typography, and so on) to your needs using the WordPress customizer.
Managing your WordPress core technology, themes and pluginsWordPress and most of its – good – themes and plugins are updated regularly for obvious purposes like security and bug fixing. Also, they are improved based on users’ demands.
There are literally thousands of themes and plugins available on the market. Many of those will work just fine with each other. However, given the wide variety of these software pieces, there are always plugins that conflict with code used in other themes and plugins, causing trouble. Simply put: some plugins are withdrawn and not maintained anymore, others contain bad code, not following the WordPress standards.
It would be impossible to test every single theme and plugin with each other. Managing your WordPress core technology, themes and plugins therefore involves updating them carefully, planning to avoid malfunctions (due to conflicting technology) and testing the technology extensively to assure they really work well.
Theme packages include a changelog.txt that describes all changes for each version. It is worth reading to understand if the changes are valuable to your site. The default answer, however, is that we recommend you to stay updated.
If you haven’t made modifications to theme files, then you can overwrite your existing theme files.
If you have made modifications to your theme, you need to study the changelog to see which files need updating. You can also compare your old modified file against the updated file with a good HTML Editor or use an online tool. We suggest using child themes to save and preserve modifications. This saves you the headache of comparing files and worrying about overwriting customisations.
EMAKERS offers a service contract for WordPress from 35 euros a month.