What’s The Next Big WordPress Powered Idea?

start-something-new-with-wordpressOnce upon a time, everything connected to WordPress was free. The only thing you had to pay for was hosting and a domain name, i.e if you did not use WordPress.com. The 5 minute install was all you needed and a theme, if you really wanted to go crazy you would get a theme that supported sidebars! Yes, there was a time when a widgetized sidebar was an amazing thing.

Forward to today and you have theme shops, premium plugins, marketplaces, specialized hosting providers, consultants, developers working in pajamas at home for $200/hr, exclusive blogs dedicated to WordPress…like us…all collectively generating millions of dollars in revenue a year!

While you don’t have to pay for any premium option today, they do offer more in terms of features than you find in the free ones available. Not all the time, but more often than not.

But are we at the pinnacle of WordPress development, or is there more to come?

Powered by WordPress

Assuming that WordPress will stay as it is forever would be foolish, taking into account all the developments it’s gone through over the years. Developers, designers and entrepreneurs are pushing the limits of the platform on a daily basis. You could virtually base a startup on it, some examples that come to mind are WordPress.com itself, Edublogs.org, Page.ly, Mojo-Themes (yep, that’s all WordPress) and ManageWP among others.

One of the defining features, in my opinion, which will pavé the way for the future are multi-site and BuddyPress. The ability to allow users to sign up, create profiles and interact is a basic ingredient in any web-based service industry. With technical barriers being eliminated WordPress has empowered a lot of ideas to come to fruition. And, I believe, we’re just getting started.

Radical Ideas

Could you start the next Instagram, Pinterest, Fab, Social Network etc…using WordPress as a base? Probably. Would it be the best option to do so? Probably Not…Yet.

That’s where I think the innovation lies, in allowing users to use a tool like WordPress to could create the next hot startup! As of today, you can create an e-commerce site, a top 10 blog, a membership site, a marketplace, a social network, probably even an SaaS tool and more. To think, it all starts with a 5 minute install!

At its core, WordPress, is just PHP, JavaScript, HTML and CSS. Some would say that it needs improvements in many aspects related to performance and security. While this could be true, there is nothing to stop anyone from optimizing it for themselves and utilizing it in whatever fashion they like.

Could we see more branches of WordPress in the future, one that caters to bloggers, one that would be geared towards small business and another that would be optimized for building your startup? It’s all completely possible, and not at the same time. The deciding factor here, are the users.

So, what say you? What do you believe will be the next big WordPress powered idea?

Image b y Peter Zoon

7 Responses

  • Its just something I’ve been thinking for the last few months,
    I have been a wordpress developer for the last 4 years already. And been using it for the last 5.

    Excellent article that raises the same questions I have,
    Truth is that php is becoming obsolete, (I think that would come to be the only problem spot)
    as js, css and html, continues to grow steadily,

    – In every personal project, I tried to put wordpress thoroughly testing its limits and it has never let me down

    I have been trying lately to make a website – using wordpress app, you can see it here: it’s a demo:http://bit.ly/ingredientesapp
    and i also did a Q & A site with badges: http://pregunta.pe
    and others.

    The idea of a wordpress for bloggers and another one with cms is the best one.
    To take this step forward maybe we need to renew the PHP use. (But in this step all the open source world would interfere)

    I await your feedback, whats your opinion on this?

    Greetings from Buenos Aires, Argentina.

    • @Martin
      “Truth is that php is becoming obsolete”

      I call BS on this.
      I code in PHP, Python, Ruby, Javascript (including nodejs, backbone etc.).

      PHP ain’t going anywhere! It currently powers approx. 75% of the web for starters. It’s the platform of choice for Facebook – which only has the biggest audience in the world. Sure PHP ain’t perfect – it’s got it’s flaws and the PHP bashers have been out in force of late. Programming languages and approaches come and go – I love to dip in and out of the latest and greatest frameworks etc. but if I was building a new web app from scratch in the morning I would take a serious look at PHP as my preferred starting point. I don’t think WordPress is quite there yet as a framework for building the next Instagram etc. I think you would hit scaling issues pretty quickly for anything other than serving content (which WordPress.com has shown can scale when you know what you are doing.).

      I’d love to see more effort to develop the WordPress API to provide more extensibility for building webapps on top of it.

    • Some great work you’ve done there Martin.

      Maybe it’s not a question of renewing the PHP use, but perhaps providing more tools around it? I feel that if they go about changing their base code it will create mass confusion…for a long time to come.

      As developers and thinkers it’s our job to test the limits and give higher benchmarks for the community to aspire too. So instead of changing the fundamentals lets work on amendments and improvements. I wouldn’t be surprised if in the near future there’s an fork of WordPress that allows users to use it strictly for web apps and high end services. Then again, there will probably be an upper limit to it. What that would be, depends on the community.

  • New Recruit

    I think we’ll see a lot more ecosystems being built using WordPress. People don’t just want a website anymore (marketers or customers). If you consider the explosion of the SaaS industry and the emergence of SaaE, the need for one integrated solution to manage projects, collaborate with team members etc, it’s only a matter of time before someone builds an ecosystem using a WordPress platform.

  • New Recruit

    Its nice to read about ideas like this as I always wondered why not WordPress as an app development framework. Anyhow, it has been a while the Matt Mullenweg has told the world that WP is now going to evolve mainly as a framework and no more just as a CMS or blogware.
    Of course, it will take time for WordPress being able to build the next instagram or anything like that. I guess scalability is still an issue as its not that easy as well as frontend design implementation. Database freedom is yet another big worry which of course other platforms such as Drupal and Joomla have take care of.
    Overall it looks good to be in the right direction though there is still a long distance to go.

Comments are closed.