What's a WordPress Developer Anyway?!?!


What’s a WordPress Developer Anyway?!?!

This morning, as I was browsing through my Linkedin feed, I came across a rather surprising question, posted on a large WordPress developers group: “What’s a WordPress developer?”

At first it seemed like a trivial question, but having taken a moment of thought, I realized there was actually no definite answer, and became curious to see what responses people come up with.

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How do you define a WordPress developer?

Before we begin with definitions, lets first lay out some facts about WordPress and what it means to be a WordPress developer:

WordPress is a free and open-source blogging tool and a content management system (CMS) based on PHP and MySQL… WordPress was used by more than 32.5% of the top 1 million websites as of June 2019. WordPress is the most popular blogging system in use on the Web, at more than 60 million websites…” (Wikipedia + Builtwith.com)

What we learn from this is that many people can use WordPress, even without being PHP experts, and since it’s an open source CMS, anyone with some basic internet skills can use WordPress to build websites.

However, that certainly does not qualify them as WordPress developers. In fact, some WordPress opposers often say that WordPress has lowered the standards of web development, imposing a situation where the true experts are no longer as needed as they were in the past.

“…WordPress has convinced a legion of amateurs with no talent or training that they’re web developers because they can configure a WordPress site, upload a theme and install some plugins. Yet they don’t know how to write HTML much less CSS, JavaScript, SQL, or a single server side programming language…”

This is especially true when platforms such as UpWork and Fiverr have dozens of developers available. You might find a cheap WordPress developer there, but chances are he or she is underqualified and accepting too many jobs simultaneously. Low quality might work in the short term, but will definitely cause problems in the future.

What is it then that makes a WordPress developer?

Here are some more answers I found online:

“…A WordPress developer is one who can make custom plugins and modules for WordPress. WordPress designer (a true one) is able to develop a theme around WordPress. A WordPress expert is someone who is able to do all of it, probably not as well as the specialized listings I previously mentioned and can help you get the end product done by knowing the right plugins and themes for the project…”

“…A WP expert is someone that understands WP and is familiar with WP core functions and how the entire thing works. Yes, a WP expert is also a PHP developer, but not every PHP developer intimately familiar with WP…”

“…Unfortunately, not everyone that calls themselves a WordPress developer deserves the title. Software development in general demands certain skills and disciplines that are often lacking in sites I’ve been hired to fix after a WordPress developer created it…”

“…In my opinion, a WordPress Developer is someone that works for WordPress and it is part of the WordPress project. In other words, very few people…”

“…Wordpress Developer is not someone that can create a WordPress Plugin because anyone that is a PHP Developer can do that. It’s better to say: PHP Developer or PHP Programmer specialized in WordPress Plugins…”

“…A top tier WP developer is also one who contributes to the codex…”

Our perspective

“…WordPress development is a profession that is based on the infrastructure of PHP programming, but furthermore, it requires a deep understanding of the WP core, library and other common practices to produce great WP based products.

Developing cutting edge WP Plugins or themes, and making them work properly in all environments while overcoming basic conflicts with popular themes and plugins needs vast amounts of WP knowledge, and a good amount of PHP skills, which are often underestimated by the common WP user.

“We at CreativeMinds are a group of highly skilled and experienced PHP developers. Some of us also have PHP-related certifications such as Zend, and many years of working with WP, so I can safely say that we are WordPress developers…” (David Rashty, CEO)

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