WordPress is one of the most popular frameworks for building websites, and subsequently the most commonly used CMS in the world. It powers roughly 30% of website on the internet today.

If that alone isn’t reason enough for you to learn it, here are some compelling arguments!

1) It’s Open Source

For starters, it’s completely free to use and contribute to! Sure, there are some great tools and frameworks that are sponsored, but open-source just has a nice ring to it. It also enables a faster path to evolution – i.e. open source tools generally grow fast because they’re adopted and contributed to without capital contingencies (requiring purchase).

2) Excellent Documentation

As a developer, you’ll find yourself using documentation for any tool or framework you use, even if you become highly proficient. WordPress has a very useful Codex and millions of online articles/tutorials that aid in development. It also has one of the largest StackOverflow thread volume compared to other frameworks. If you need help, you’ll be able to find it.

3) PHP = Great Starter Language

Choosing a programming language is another article in itself… but for young web developers you can’t go wrong with PHP. It’s been around for quite some time with proven enterprise application (Facebook was originally built using PHP), and it’s easy to pickup. Furthermore, it’s not a compiled language like Java or Ruby, which means you can write code and instantly deploy it to a web server for processing. Compiled languages require extra steps to be made ready for server side processing.

4) Perfect for Freelancing

If you choose to freelance, building websites can be a lucrative and flexible path. WordPress is arguably the best tool for building websites, especially if you’re new to web development. So within a few weeks you could be ready to take on clients and charge for your services.

5) Easy Database Introduction

Getting acclimated to databases can be a challenging and confusing part of web development. WordPress alleviates some of this by using MySQL (another open source tool) and an easy database model to work from. This will help you understand some basic database management principals and allow you to build a foundation to build upon.

There are plenty of other reasons to learn WordPress before other frameworks. There are also plenty of people who would disagree!

That’s the beauty of the open web – we have tons of tools and options to choose from. But for the raw beginning developer, there’s a lot that can be learned from building a few WordPress sites.

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Ali Jafarian

Ali is the founder and chief architect of The Web Project.