If you're planning on building a website, then the easiest way to get started is with a content management system.
The trouble is, there are so many different CMS solutions out there today, that it's hard to know which one you should be using. Drupal, WordPress and Joomla are all popular options for today's webmasters, but each comes with it's own specific strengths and weaknesses that are worth considering before you make your commitment.
To help you make a more informed decision about your CMS, we've put together this quick guide to each option, and the most important features to look at.
Comparing Drupal, Joomla, and WordPress
The first thing you should know is that all three CMSs have their similarities. For instance, Drupal, Joomla, and WordPress are all open-source software solutions, and they're all mainly written in PHP. At the same time, each of the CMS solutions supports MySQL as their system for database management. Specifically, WordPress supports MySQL exclusively, while Drupal and Joomla support other options too.
Additionally, Joomla, Drupal, and Wordpress all use themes and templates to help you create a more straightforward website from scratch.
Of course, while there are plenty of similarities, these CMS solutions have their differences too. Let's look at the differences in some of the most essential features.
Comparing Ease of Use
These days, most of the companies building their websites through Joomla, Drupal, and WordPress won't be programmers or web developers. That means that it's important for the CMS you choose to be simple and accessible. WordPress features a very famous five-minute install, which means that you can set up your new website in practically no time at all.
On the other hand, Joomla installation and ease of use might not be as great as it is for WordPress, but there are many similar steps installed. Even Drupal has a pretty quick and easy download package to work with. Despite all options being relatively easy, WordPress is still the preferred choice for most when it comes to ease of use.
Themes and Add-ons
As mentioned above, all three CMS options come with their plugins and themes that you can use to enhance your website experience. WordPress gives users the option to change the appearance of their website using a range of themes, and there are a few pre-installed to get you started. You can also browse through an extensive range of plugins for new features and services within your blog or eCommerce store.
Joomla has plenty of templates and extensions too, but like with Drupal, you will need to leave your site, search for the module that you want to bring onto your website, and then add it to your system manually. Only WordPress can offer a one-click extensibility option for their plugins and themes.
Support and Customer Service
Even if you have some prior knowledge about websites and creating your own online presence, it's important to know that there's support available when you need it. We all face hurdles at times after all. WordPress has a huge community of active users who are willing to provide assistance through official forums. There's also plenty of documents and handbooks out there to check out.
Joomla and Drupal also have a large and helpful community that users can tap into if they're feeling stuck. Joomla has plenty of documentation on their website for beginners to try, and you can join mailing lists and forums if you need to as well. Additionally, there's extensive documentation for Drupal too; you just need to know where to look.
Security and Peace of Mind
Finally, security will always be an essential component when choosing the right CMS for your website. No matter what kind of website you're building, there are always security threats out there. As the most popular CMS in the world, WordPress sites are unfortunately targeted more frequently by hackers. Saying that WordPress still has a very secure code at its heart, and it knows how to respond to threats and attacks very quickly. The automatic update mechanism in WordPress also allows websites to update fast when a new patch rolls out.
Joomla is a lot like WordPress in regard to security, which means that they can respond to issues quickly, but you'll need to conduct updates yourself. On the other hand, Drupal is considered to be one of the most secure CMS suites out there. They quickly find and fix security patches, and you rarely hear about attacks.
Ultimately, the right choice will be up to you. If you're looking for an all-around favorite, then WordPress seems to be the preferred option, but Drupal and Joomla have a lot to offer too.