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Comparing WordPress, Joomla!, and Drupal: Advantages and Disadvantages

Written by Alfredo C. on . Posted in Digital, Marketing, Technology

Wordpress, Joomla!, and Drupal

WordPress, Joomla!, and Drupal

When we started to design the ReachHispanic website in 2009, we did a search to find the best OpenSource option to use for the project. The best one we evaluated was WordPress and for that reason we started to look even deeper at its features and options for short, medium and long term use. Since then, Joomla!  (which evolved from Mambo) and Drupal appeared with great recommendations and a wide audience that gave its preference options.

Four years later, is still seems that WordPress is mostly used for publishing and news sites while Joomla! and Drupal are best for multi-purpose sites. However, the debates continue, with the development of new technology, applications, mobile devices, new versions of web languages (HTML5, CSS3, jQuery, jQuery Mobile, etc), so it is fitting to ask if these aforementioned CMS’s are still relevant for the implementation at the beginning or migration stage of a web site.

The CMS’s are very useful for dynamic content creation on the web (blogs, corporate portals, portfolios, virtual stores, etc.) The most used platforms are Joomla!, WordPress, and Drupal (although many others exist which are holding their own and becoming more and more accepted each year, such as Plone, dotCMS, SilverStripe, Typo3, etc.), each one with its own advantages and inconveniences.

With any of the three most popular CMS, one can do more or less the same thing and design any page. However, each one has its potentials and drawbacks.

WordPress
One of the keys to success is its simple installation and easy use. The comments are integrated into the system, as well as the services of pings, trackbacks, profiles, blogrolls, etc. The user should not have to worry about these operations or be looking for third-party extensions to integrate them. But not everything can be optimized. For example, to develop a store with this CMS is somewhat complex, and the results are usually not as satisfactory as other platforms intended exclusively for this purpose.

Advantages

  • Easy to use
  • Ideal for blogs
  • Quick to learn

Disadvantages

  • Complex and tedious for developers
  • The updates often contain problems

Drupal
An advanced and easily programmable CMS. There are many functions and “prefabricated” modules (such as the plugins or extensions for WordPress). Each node has its own commands and tags that can be placed anywhere in the page.

Advantages

  • Friendly development
  • Large developer community
  • Ample opportunities for development

Disadvantages

  • Not very user-friendly
  • It is somewhat complex for unexperienced users
  • Too complex for its many possibilities

Joomla!
Joomla!’s possibilities are numerous, it is easy to use and personalize, is flexible with coding (unlike Drupal), and the learning curve is not as extreme.

However, when it comes to developing multisites, it is poor. To be fair, I must mention that its latest versions (2.5x) have had many improvements and I look forward to its development schedule which keeps getting better. It is the most-used CMS.

Advantages

  • Friendly for users and developers
  • Great support community
  • Great growth and is constantly improved

Disadvantages

  • Not as potent as Drupal
  • Its use is slightly confusing, it has been improved but it is still a little dense

This post is also available in: Spanish

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Alfredo C.

Born in Havana, Cuba. Alfredo Cisneros is Alcance Media Group’s Web Operations Manager, as well as Graphic & Web Designer.

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