Debunking 5 myths about decoupled WordPress

Thanks to our roles in the WordPress and enterprise software communities, we participate in a lot of conversations with both agencies and brands about the best systems and architectures to power stellar customer experiences.

While our official stance is along the lines of, “the best choice is whatever best serves your end user,” our team has decades of collective experience powering some of the most sophisticated implementations of WordPress at scale. And this experience contradicts many of the myths we hear floating around about decoupled WordPress.

NEW White paper: What to know before you go decoupled

Myth #1: A decoupled front end will make my website load faster

Not necessarily! While an approach that includes flat files and a strong caching solution might improve load times compared to other options, WordPress VIP includes multiple layers of caching to make sure your editors and producers, as well as your audience, can have a lightning-fast experience using WordPress templates.

Myth #2: It’s easier to hire React developers than WordPress developers

With the release of WordPress 5.0 in 2018, the Gutenberg block editor is powered largely by React, so WordPress developers are React developers! While we’re always conscious of the “flavor-of-the-month” effect when it comes to JavaScript frameworks and libraries, the WordPress community has invested significant time and effort into React. If you need help getting your organization started with React and WordPress, take a look at the list of WordPress VIP Featured Partner agencies for some ideas about where to start.

Myth #3: Decoupled WordPress is more secure

At WordPress VIP, we’re the leaders in making sure WordPress is scalable and secure for enterprise use. How do we do it? By making sure all of your custom development and third-party integrations meet our high standards, and that they follow best practices for WordPress development.

Myth #4: A decoupled approach provides more control over the user experience

Going decoupled unplugs the power of the WordPress Gutenberg block editor from the look and feel of your site, taking control away from your content production team. That disconnect also makes live previews difficult to engineer, further frustrating teams that have to reinvent the wheel to drive content across the decoupled gap.

Myth #5 – Decoupled architecture works best with an API-first CMS

WordPress is the ideal platform to complement modern technologies and tooling. Thanks to its ubiquity as the software that powers more than 36% of the web, there is a global community of expert developers constantly advancing its capabilities. One example of this community’s response to the demand for modern tooling is the WPGraphQL plugin, which makes it easy to use GraphQL with WordPress. Our client Accuweather uses a similar solution to deliver localized content from multiple data sources in alerts, landing pages, videos, articles, and more. And they still benefit from the reliability, stability, and scalability of enterprise WordPress.

While it may be tempting to go fully decoupled, it’s important to have a complete understanding of the benefits and drawbacks of whatever architecture you choose. For more on this topic, check out our white paper: What to know before you go decoupled. If you have any questions, please get in touch — we love talking about what’s possible with WordPress.

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