How to choose a WordPress Developer

WordPress Developer

There are two kinds of WordPress Developers:

There is a huge disparity in skill levels of WordPress developers. Sometimes it helps to understand the differences between them, especially if you are looking to hire one. If you are a hiring manager, and you already understand the difference, then it helps to find candidates that see eye to eye with what you expect.

  1. Junior Web Designer: Uses WordPress because it is a fully functioning platform that allows you to get a website up in minutes. This user knows how to operate WooCommerce and uses page builders like Elementor to create front-end pages. Thanks to WordPress’s robust platform and endless plugins, this individual can figure out how to assemble a collection of well-thought-out plugins to create a good-looking, fully functional site.
  2. Senior Web Developer: This person has had a long career in programming for various platforms. They are experts in PHP and JavaScript, and with the advent of full site editing, they should also be familiar with ReactJS and perhaps Laravel. As a backend developer in PHP, they should also have advanced SQL capabilities. This individual may or may not choose to use an existing theme or create a new one. They may elect to use a page builder like Elementor, or they may build all their own blocks and plugins.

    This person understands WordPress’s programming architecture intimately and knows how Action and Filter Hooks work. They understand how the database works, are familiar with cPanel, DNS records, WHM, Linux, have detailed knowledge of handling rewrite rules, understand the .htaccess file, the wp-config file, and know how to utilize the WordPress structure to execute AJAX commands through admin-ajax.php.This person understands how SEO works, is knowledgeable about auto-publishing to social media networks, and knows how to track interactions. As experts in IP traffic, they track down hackers, trolls, and spammers. They know how to syndicate websites, use RSS feeds, send automated newsletters and emails, build HTML emails, and set up custom email servers to track them.

    They can build their own product configurators, understand the sales tax system in WooCommerce, and can create custom product templates. They know how to build APIs, access the WordPress REST API system, and develop Headless WordPress applications. They can build modules that integrate shipping quotes directly from FedEx and UPS APIs.

    They should also understand WordPress Multisite configurations and how the database handles Multisite differently from single installations. They should be knowledgeable about BuddyPress and be able to configure it in multiple ways, especially on a Multisite system.

    They know how to correctly enqueue CSS and JavaScript files, use Bootstrap, and build pages and blocks as both server-side and client-side renderings. If they are worth their weight, they can build Intranet systems, integrate existing ERP and product data with the WordPress site, and then create advanced business intelligence systems from integrated data. They can produce advanced SQL queries to build data sets for analysis and integrate WordPress with accounting, marketing, or Salesforce systems. As front-end and block developers, they should have an in-depth knowledge of HTML, CSS, and SASS.

    In short, the Senior Web Developer should be capable of recreating WordPress itself or creating a new CMS. However, they also understand that WordPress still dominates 60% of the Web Market, and being advanced experts provides a vast playing field from which to launch a professional platform. They know how to make development sites, push changes live, provide backup and disaster recovery solutions, migrate sites and data, and support them from anywhere.