To summarize briefly, all 3 systems offer great free themes, but these options are good for creating fairly simple resources (say, a news blog). When it comes to something like an online store, it’s worth budgeting for buying premium templates. Otherwise, you may face a lot of problems in the future: among others, your platform is likely to crash from time to time or work incorrectly, especially when updates are released.
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However, it’s up to you to decide which is better.
You can install the content management system you like and be content with the result, but if you want to improve your resource and expand its functionality, you’ll have to download additional plugins and modules, some of which are paid.
Official WordPress offers 50+ K plugins allowing you to turn your website into the portal you need, be it a blogger’s newsfeed or a prestigious information platform. And if they aren’t enough, you’ll find the necessary module on other resources: WordPress is very popular, and therefore the developers spare no effort creating a lot of useful extensions. Some of them are completely free, and some are available for a fee.
Most importantly, finding and managing plugins is extremely easy. This doesn’t mean, however, that you won’t need expert assistance. WordPress content management system is intuitive and user-friendly, but sometimes it requires a skilled approach anyway.
Joomla also provides various additional extensions with which you can easily create any portal and manage your email campaigns. And although Joomla is behind on the number of extensions and plugins (compared to WordPress), you still have plenty to choose from.
And one more thing. If you select the standard installation, it’d be impossible to search for the extensions and templates directly from the admin panel itself. Thus, without the proper experience, installing the required module isn’t an easy task.
In general, we can say that Joomla perfectly combines the functionality of Drupal and clear management of WordPress.
Drupal keeps up with its competitors and offers next to 40K available modules and templates to better the resource. However, finding and installing them is just as difficult as in the previous case (to be precise, no matter what system you’re dealing with, Joomla or Drupal, you’ll have to work hard to apply the chosen plugin).
When dealing with Drupal, a webmaster usually has to find suitable extensions on a third-party site, set their address in the appropriate section of the admin panel, and then activate them.
If you handle the above task, you can be sure your portal will work as it should. Drupal websites provide improved performance and faster response time.
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To summarize briefly, we can say that each CMS offers some free plugins, which allow getting a resource with basic functionality. But special features are only available in paid packages and versions.
By the way, without experience, plugins alone will be of little use to you. You need to hire specialists who know how to build a website with a content management system in question.
Website creation and management isn’t a simple task, and a beginner may need help or advice from experienced developers. Fortunately, each of the three systems has gathered a professional community around itself, not to mention official sources with a ton of useful information on setting up a CMS.
Since WordPress software is one of the most popular content management systems, its users will have no problem finding valuable information in a variety of sources, including:
- official forums and detailed WordPress documentation;
- large user community. You can communicate with experts on a variety of developer and webmaster forums. You may well get useful WordPress tips and thereby solve your problem;
- platforms like Fiverr, Upwork, and Elance, where you’ll have a chance to find paid support and hire WordPress professionals.
Joomla has also managed to attract a large and active community, so you won’t be left without help and advice:
- firstly, Joomla offers accessible documentation, in which beginners will find a lot of useful and interesting information;
- if the documentation isn’t enough, you can refer to the forums and IRC chats;
- finally, there are third-party websites where you’ll find experts to consult with (usually for a fee).
However, we must warn you: professional help from Joomla developers is usually more expensive than advice from WordPress experts.
Like its competitors, other players in the content management system market, Drupal has succeeded in gathering a group of loyal users, many of whom are willing to help newcomers. But Drupal is more complicated than WordPress and Joomla, so if you don’t have the experience, you won’t be satisfied with just a few tips. You’re likely to need real hands-on assistance.
Anyway, Drupal provides you with:
- extensive documentation;
- updates on a regular basis;
- support forums and professional chats;
- Drupal Marketplace, where users would find developers able to help solve their problem. Drupal in this case serves as an intermediary between the client and the expert.
But bear in mind that most of the Drupal professional information is provided in English.
We’re ready to share with you a few tips, which would help you successfully start a digital project.
As you can see, users of the content management system like WordPress, Joomla or Drupal will have no problem getting support. You’ll be able to get the help you need without further ado.
Localization & Multilingual Support
Many modern sites are multilingual, which means the possibility of localization plays an important role. Let’s take a look at what WordPress, Joomla, and Drupal offer us in this regard.
WordPress is available in 50+ languages. Then again, sometimes you need to connect a special plugin to create a multilingual website, but the game is definitely worth the candle.
By the way, the most popular website themes are also translated into several languages, so that users won’t experience any difficulties.
Joomla offers functionality, which allows managing multilingual resources without connecting additional modules and extensions. To do this, you just need to specify the desired language in the admin panel.
Drupal also gives you the ability to create sites in multiple languages. All the user needs to do is add the appropriate module.
By the by, if you need to configure the language of the content management system’s interface itself, use the configuration section.
Security comes first, don’t you agree? But what does CMS do to protect its users?
Since WordPress is the best CMS available in the market (okay, maybe not the best, but incredibly popular), these sites are more likely to be hacked. However, WordPress developers are taking steps to avoid harmful consequences:
- Safe WordPress code quickly responds to the slightest vulnerability in the system;
- WordPress-based resources can be protected with automatic backups and two-factor authentication (not to mention other security technologies);
- And of course, don’t forget about constant system updates, which are partly aimed at improving protection mechanisms against hackers.
Comparing Joomla and WordPress content management systems, we can confidently say that there are minimal differences in security issues (although they do exist):
- Joomla quickly responds to any emerging vulnerabilities and fixes them without delay;
- System updates are being also constantly released, however, Joomla loses to WordPress in this respect;
- Do you want to back up your site content? Joomla provides appropriate extensions to accomplish this.
And that’s not all that Joomla does to protect its users, the list goes on.
Drupal-based sites are considered to be the most secure. And this is partly due to the fact that the Drupal developers are constantly working to improve the security of the system and inform users about the elimination of the identified vulnerabilities.
But another reason why Drupal resources are rarely hacked is the less popularity of the CMS in question.
Content management system cost
All three systems are completely free to download and (in theory) use. But you’ve probably already realized that you cannot do without some expenses, namely:
- to begin with, you have to pay annually for the domain name and hosting services. The prices are different, it all depends on the chosen provider;
- if you want to expand the functionality of the site, you need to connect additional plugins and modules, many of which cost money;
- themes aren’t always free either, the best options are only available in paid versions.
WordPress vs Drupal vs Joomla: what to choose?
Its main pros include:
- The system’s popularity, thanks to which WordPress has amassed a large and powerful community of developers. And these developers are constantly improving WordPress;
- The presence of many hosting providers that offer services to users of WordPress sites;
- Easy to learn CMS: even beginners are able to create a website using WordPress. Of course, this only applies to the most basic resources, setting up and improving a website still requires an understanding of coding;
- Teaching tutorials: If you want to get a better grasp of WordPress, you’ll easily find tons of useful information sources;
- The ability to improve the functionality of the resource for free or cheaply (thanks to a large number of affordable plugins);
- SEO support. As we already told you, Google loves WordPress-based sites, and therefore they easily go to the top.
WordPress is a great example of a content management system, but it also has a few cons:
- Hacker attacks. The popularity of WordPress has a downside that we mentioned above: alas, the system very often attracts unwanted attention from hackers;
- Lack of support for outdated versions of plugins, which some also consider a disadvantage;
- Limited choice of design templates, which makes WordPress resources look too simple and outdated;
- Incomplete content management capabilities as WordPress was designed as a blogging platform. So when you need to process a large amount of data, you may run into performance issues.
A content management system like WordPress is a perfect choice if you want an intuitive, easy-to-use news platform or blog portal. This is an excellent option if your website has a simple structure and isn’t subject to high loads.
But if you’re planning to create an online store, then WordPress will work properly only if your catalog contains no more than 5 thousand items. Otherwise, it’s likely to operate rather slowly.
Among the pros of Joomla are the following:
- The convenience of work. The system is more difficult to understand than WordPress but easier than Drupal (as they say, everything is about the degree);
- A large expert community that will allow you to always get the help you need;
- The ability to create a variety of sites, including those with a fairly complex structure. The main thing is not to overload the system with multiple modules;
- A rich selection of modules, plugins, and themes, many of which are free.
Joomla’s cons include:
- The need to master the system. The content management system’s interface is rather clear, but a beginner might get confused anyway;
- Poor SEO features. The situation isn’t hopeless, experts will help you optimize your resource, but they’ll have to apply energies, which would entail additional costs;
- Not the highest speed of work. The problem can be solved with plugins and good hosting, but be prepared to fork out;
- Mediocre level of security (at least by default);
- Possibility of incorrect system updates, which sometimes leads to unwanted crashes.
Use Joomla if you’re planning to create e-commerce sites or develop social platforms.
We’ve almost finished discussing Joomla, WordPress, and Drupal trends, it remains to talk about the pros and cons of our last hero.
Let’s start with the good:
- Flexibility and universality of the system, which makes it possible to build websites of various types and levels of complexity;
- Targeting the needs of developers. Among other things, the basic installation of the system serves as the foundation upon which developers could create their own software solutions;
- Scalability, which makes Drupal an excellent solution for large business projects;
- Lots of information sources, including manuals, documentation, and more;
- Many additional modules and extensions to make the site the way it was intended;
- Standardization: shortly put, the code is written by developers in the same style, which is rather convenient.
So will it be WordPress, Joomla, or Drupal? To make a final decision, let’s discuss the cons of Drupal:
- The complexity of the system. Newbies are unlikely to figure this CMS out (at least without aid);
- The paucity of free plugins. Most additional modules are paid;
- A limited number of themes. Alas, you have to hire a UI/UX expert to improve your website design;
- The need for a powerful server to guarantee the stable operation of the Drupal-based resource.
Drupal is an enterprise-grade CMS. It is best used in large projects, which need scalability, stability, and high speed. If these qualities are more important than ease of use and clarity of the content management system’s interface, then feel safe to choose Drupal.
Let’s briefly summarize all of the above:
- Thinking of building a simple website and looking to get started effortlessly? Choose WordPress, and there’s an end to it;
- Intending to scale up your project significantly in the future? It means you have to pick Drupal;
- And finally, Joomla is a kind of intermediate option between these systems.