Freedom of expression allows content creators the confidence to create engaging content. Restricting their access to essential resources can hamper the quality of their content considerably, and in turn, affect the perception of their audience.
Over the past few years, WordPress has gained enormous popularity among website creators because while it gives them the freedom to showcase their creativity, it is also open-source. More than one-third of the websites in the world are hosted on WordPress.
As more and more bloggers and web professionals are starting to put their own spin on the creativity on offer on WordPress websites, it’s time to display them to the world. WordPress is the most popular and largest CMS by market share. Like WordPress, Bluehost also supports the open web and is constantly simplifying the process of creating websites and online stores on WordPress.
The Bluehost WordPress Creators Awards has been launched to celebrate and recognize the best talent who has created a website, a project or any tool on WordPress. Bluehost India announced the top 20 WordPress creators in the country spanning over two categories at the WordPress Creators Awards India. The awards were launched in August and received interest from over 1000 creators and totalled 400+submissions. The top 20 creators were announced at the Awards Night Event on 12th November.
Apart from the awards, the event also featured a chat between Syed Balkhi, founder and CEO at WPBeginner and Awesome Motive and Alexander Gounder, owner at Ink My Web and organiser for Wordcamp India. A masterclass was also conducted by Yoast CEO Marieke van de Rakt on how budding creators can rank their websites higher on search engines.
Role of WordPress in digital acceleration
Talking about the effect of the pandemic and lockdowns on creators, Syed said that they had always been distributed as a remote team, so they knew how to tackle the challenges that the pandemic and lockdowns threw at them. “We were slightly ahead of the curve of digital acceleration, and we knew how to operate remotely,” he said.
Digital acceleration, he noted, made several local businesses realise the need and importance of digital presence, which also resulted in the growth of WordPress over the last year. Syed pointed out how the pandemic made companies cost-conscious, thereby bringing discipline into spending.
With exponential growth in the use of WordPress over the last year, Syed expects it to keep growing in the same manner. What started as a blogging platform is now a website infrastructure that helps in building any type of website or app.
Speaking about new themes being made available on the open-source platform, Syed said that WordPress has given users a glimpse of what’s about to come in the future. He said it’s exciting from DIY website owners and web professionals’ point of view because it allows them time on rebuilding websites.
Several communities and benefactors have helped WordPress become a better and more secure place for creators. “We have had conversations about Web 3.0, decentralisation, and democratisation of the web, and WordPress did that, which is why it powers nearly 43 per cent of the web now,” said Syed. He added that Bluehost teams contribute to the open source platform on an ongoing basis.
Concluding his talk, Syed said that the best time to start is right now. He also suggested established web pros keep an open mind about what’s to come and make sure that they keep trying the new blog patterns that are introduced on the platform.
He congratulated all the winners of Bluehost Awards India and lauded all creators for their efforts and Bluehost India for this initiative.
How to make websites more visible
Yoast’s Marieke shared tips to aspiring website developers about getting their clients’ websites discovered by Google. Emphasising the importance of sustainable SEO, she said that developers need to comply with Google’s mission which is to organise the world’s information and make it universally accessible.
Developers should focus on all aspects of website optimisation so that they can achieve the best result with the help of quality content, flawless security, good UX and UI, technical excellence, and great PR and social. She also demonstrated that Google needs a decent internal linking structure, as randomly scattered pages make it difficult for search engines to determine the important features of the website.
She further cautioned users to make sure that their text is great for Google to understand them. On how to create great content, Marieke advised users to start with keyword research while keeping the content original, readable, and findable with a focus on the structure of the text, clarity of paragraphs, transition words and short sentences.
The event celebrated the excellence of the top WordPress creators in India. The winners – determined by a jury panel chaired by Syed Balkhi, founder and CEO at WPBeginner and Awesome Motive and comprising Alisha Raghavan, Director Strategy and Design at Pensaar Design; Udhaya Kumar Padmanabhan, Global Executive Director at Designit; Kaladhar Bapu, Founder and President of UMO Design Foundation and UXINDIA International Conference; Harsh Agarwal, Founder of ShoutMeLoud.com, and more – came together to thank Bluehost for giving them an opportunity to showcase their websites and inspiring other bloggers to follow suit.
Ashutosh Gaur, the winner in the blogger category, thanked Bluehost for the award. Speaking about his website Riddleman FM, he said that he always keeps in mind the compatibility of the plugins he uses on his website and that web presence, content, and interface helped him get his website noticed by a mass audience. He added that the main focus of the Bluehost Awards Night was to encourage creators to continue their work and their passion for creating websites should never die.
The other winners in the blogger category (in order) were Anuj Puranik (traveljarvis.com), Zohair Ansari (zohairansari.com), Jaideep Singh Chadha (gurudrasil.com), Vashishtha Kapoor (vashishthakapoor.com), Navinta Kumari (thatgratefulsoul.com), Sooraj Divakaran (digitaluncovered.com), Amit Loomba (Trykiya.com), Deeksha Sharma (youinverse.org), and Babita Singh (healthically.com).
Haresh Vachhani – winner in the web professionals category said that in order to create and maintain a WordPress website, the design should be modern and creative as per the latest design trends, fully responsive but with minimum plugins and optimised for search and speed. He further added that providers like Bluehost help both novice and expert creators with the help of their WordPress Builder and WordPress Optimised hosting. He mentioned that his WordPress theme Litho got discovered due to the quality of the theme, Envato Marketplace, on-page SEO, etc.
The other winners in the web professional category (in order) were Gaurav Tripathi (myaeofit.com), Dr Megha Phansalkar (tisser.in), Debashis Mohanty (indiaartndesign.com), Chetan Prajapati (collectiveinnovaition.com), Harshil Anand (thesidepath.com), Debashis Chakraborty (thedatapark.com), Arpit G Shah (wpsyncsheets.com), Prudhvi Kanakala (maggt.com), and Gaurav Tiwari (Dynamic Month and Year into Posts Plugin).
Bluehost India provides WordPress solutions for both novice and advanced users to help create websites, online stores and find success online. Their newly launched WordPress Builder is an easy drag and drop editor built with smart AI for cross device rendering. Bluehost is recommended by WordPress .org and provides customized WordPress hosting solutions for all types of users.