• Issue #43

Making the case for WordPress Modernization

A computer that's worn out, old, and has plants growing out of it.

Higher Ed websites built on WordPress are awful. Generally. There are a few exceptions, but those sites are so bad not because of how they’re designed or even because it’s WordPress. Mostly, it comes down to how colleges and universities operate.

Consider this.

WordPress powers over 40% of all websites. It’s used by over 60% of websites that utilize a CMS. (source)

That’s a lot. Like, a lot, a lot. In higher ed alone, it accounts for over 40% of CMS installs, according to a 2021 study by eQAfy.

But I have a bit of an issue with WordPress in higher education. See, colleges and universities aren’t staffed to maintain WordPress for the long haul. Often, institutions decide to go with WordPress because it’s “free” and relatively inexpensive to get up and running. But no CMS is maintenance free, and they’re all kind of expensive to do correctly.

A large chunk of the higher ed WordPress sites we come across have these issues:

  1. They’re using out of date versions of WordPress
  2. They were built using a page builder like Divi, Elementor, or Beaver Builder
  3. They have UX flows that haven’t been touched in years

The first two problems tend to rest on how the sites were built. If a local WP agency was brought on to build a site for $20,000, those institutions got exactly what $20k buys: a “premium” theme modified to fit the design spec. They’re not able to update WordPress because the code quality is poor and there’s no one to support it.

Technical debt can drag an institution into oblivion and that’s why Bravery is recommitting to helping institutions of all sizes modernize their WordPress sites. Affordably.

Sometimes you need immediate results or help to get back to a point where you can successfully maintain the site you have. Bravery can help.

We’ll modernize the web design you have so that it uses the WordPress Block Editor. We’ll make your site accessible and fast. We’ll help you migrate content and SEO data. And we’ll fix key journeys on your site to encourage more applications and inquiries.

If an entire website overhaul isn’t in the budget for this fiscal year, let Bravery help you increase your enrollment revenue by optimizing the website you have now.

- Joel Goodman