I’m sure by now you have heard rumors floating around campus about some “new web thing” called WordPress. In this blog post, we’ll take a look at what WordPress actually is. Here, you’ll find out how you can prepare your site for the transition from Web Manager to WordPress and get some tips on what to expect during the transition.
WordPress is a free, easy to use Content Management System (CMS) that comes in two variations: WordPress.com and WordPress.org. The “.com” version of the tool is a stripped down, basic version of WordPress that is primarily used for blogging sites. The “.org” version is a hosted solution that offers a wide array of customization options. WordPress.org is used for major websites across the web that range from online storefronts, news sites, and higher education websites.
Although Web Manager has served us well over the years, it has presented several problems for users trying to edit their pages. It also lacks some important features that come standard in most of today’s CMS tools. Instead of rebuilding Web Manager (which was built in-house here at Liberty), the web team decided to move to a more globally utilized tool that handles everything that today’s web trends demand. WordPress is more secure, has more features, and works great on mobile devices.
In preparation for our move from Web Manager to WordPress, there are some things you can do to get your pages ready. The first thing we suggest you do is to conduct an audit of your website. We spoke about this in greater detail in our last blog post, but it is a good concept to reiterate here. Take some time and go through all of your pages. Is there outdated content? Can some things be deleted? Part of this process is to ensure that your pages are accurate and free from any ROT content. Completing this step will give us a clean and easy to transition site (which means a quicker move to WordPress for you!).
So now that your site is accurate and ready to go, your next question is most likely going to be, “When do we get to move to WordPress?” Academic departments are going to be the first departments to move to WordPress. When your department is ready to be moved, our team will work with IT Development to transition your existing content and make sure everything works and looks great. Before the site goes live, we will set up a training time with you and your department’s users so all of you can get some hands-on experience with your new site.
Moving to WordPress over the next calendar year will bring lots of opportunities to improve both the user and editor experience. And since WordPress is such a popular CMS, there are tons of tutorials, tips, and tricks available on the web. Let us know if you have any additional questions about WordPress … we are here to help!