Creative Uses for WordPress

Creative Uses for WordPress

Andy Holland

WordPress isn’t just for blogs or business sites. In fact, there are so many different uses for the platform; whether you want a directory, a social network or an intranet, WordPress can do it.

Through the use of themes and plugins, both paid and free, your site can be anything.

Here are some ideas for you to get the ball rolling.

A Public or Private Social Network

There are a lot of social networks online – Twitter, Facebook, Path, and Yammer to name a few. However, you might not want to rely on third party services. A self-hosted WordPress site can be used instead to build your own social network, whether public or private.

The WordPress theme P2 can be used to build a WordPress-based social network. If you want to set up your network as private, the privacy settings can be used so that your site can be viewed only by those that you want such as friends, family, and work colleagues. The P2 theme can be seen in action here, and there are a lot of plugins that can be added to supercharge it. P2 gives you the tools you need to run the social network, with privacy settings, signups for users, and many other elements all run from the WordPress backend.

Another option is WP Mingle. This plugin allows you to create pages such as signuplogin, and profile pages as seen on Mingle’s own network here. Just like Facebook, users create an account, login, post text updates, and interact with others. There are other options for image sharing with free plugins too.

A Company Intranet

Building a company intranet can be done with WordPress as a backend. Treehouse have written a comprehensive blog to help.

There are a number of plugins that you can use to create an intranet, including Simple Intranet which comes in both a paid and free versions depending on what you want. Obviously there are a lot more features with the paid version.

An Online CV or Business Card

If you’re looking for a theme for your site to change it into an online resume, then there are a number of stylish options. Free, you could consider zeeBizzCard or the Digital Business Card WordPress Theme. There are paid options for something a bit fancier, including Cascade, Biopic, John Perez vCard WordPress Theme,  and Aurel Resume.

A Directory

If you want to build a directory – whether a membership directory, a business directory, or a directory with reviews, then there’s a plugin for that, unsurprisingly. This is the Business Directory. The free version allows you to accept submissions for listings. These include display locations and categories. The paid option goes further, with Google Maps integration and postcode search.

Themes can be used for this as well, such as Directory Portal or ListingPress which give a professional look to your directory site.