David is a digital marketer and online business builder who started building WordPress sites for Michigan-based small businesses in 2008. He has since shifted to the marketing realm, having led SEO and PPC campaigns for several national and global brands, including Fortune 500 companies. Through his side business, Interactually, David consults, blogs, builds, and manages multiple WordPress-based businesses.
He’ll be presenting Making A Living Through A WordPress-Based Business.
Why do you use WordPress?
I use WordPress primarily because of its flexibility, performance and community. There’s very little you can’t do with WordPress and if you can’t find a way, there’s a brilliant community that can help you out.
When and how did you start using WordPress?
I started using WordPress in 2008 after I started my first business and was looking for a versatile and reliable content management system to build sites on for clients. Shortly after, I began to utilize WordPress for all of my personal projects as well.
What tips or resources would you recommend to a new WordPress user?
When starting out in WordPress, I would definitely recommend getting ingrained in the community; not only in the support forums, but also meeting people through WordPress Meetups and of course, WordCamps. These people will help you get to know WordPress and its capabilities, and also guide you through decisions on themes, plugins, etc.
What advice would you give someone who’s building a business around WordPress design or development?
Establish some solid processes. When a potential client approaches you about a design and/or build, how do you respond? What happens next? What do the quoting, approval and payment processes look like? What all do you need to handle on launch day?
You can avoid a lot of headaches, out-of-scope work and last-minute scrambling by having firm processes in place.
Oh, and one word: Contracts.
How do you stay informed about WordPress (news, tips, etc.)?
I supposed I don’t really have a set source outside of WordPress.org. With a community so large, it’s easy to come across valuable, actionable information on dozens of sites and blogs. Following WordPress thought-leaders and developers on Twitter provides some excellent articles, news and tips as well.
What’s a cool WordPress-based site you’ve seen recently?
I really like the design of Think Traffic. Corbett Barr, Chase Reeves and Caleb Wojcik are experts in driving conversions and it’s obvious that they put a lot of thought into what they want visitors to do and where they want them to go. They’re also the brains behind a number of other great sites and resources for online business builders.
It’s also responsive, and I’m baffled by the number of new sites that are still launching without taking mobile considerations into account.
What do you like most about WordCamps?
WordCamps take the awesomeness that is the WordPress online community and turn it into real life interaction. It’s just a bunch of like-minded, enthusiastic, helpful people gathered together to learn, share and connect. What’s not to like?