Joomla vs. WordPress is one of the oldest controversies among the creators of sites and web pages.
And it is normal: both are the most important and used content managers (CMS) on the entire Internet. Many prefer them for the advantages they represent for their respective projects.
At the same time, both have users willing to fight tooth and nail, defending their favorite CMS.
It is time to decide at once which of the two is the best, comparing their advantages and disadvantages and learning more about these two CMS.
What is a CMS?
A Content Management Software (CMS) translates to “content management software” or content manager for short.
A CMS is software that allows users of all levels (from beginners to expert programmers) to administer and manage the content that is created, uploaded, and displayed on a website.
Website builders have a lot of content to load on them (the structure of the web, designs, documents, texts, images, videos, and a long etcetera). That is why keeping them organized, accessible, and easily modifiable – in case of errors or improvements – is essential.
Today there are many, many CMSs. Some companies even choose to create their own CMS to use only in certain projects and internally.
The two most used CMS currently are Joomla and WordPress.
Joomla vs. WordPress
Before we take on the two contenders for our Joomla versus WordPress, let’s briefly review how they originated, and their place in the content management market to date.
What is Joomla?
For its part, Joomla arose from a fork (or “fork”) of an older project called Mambo. The team behind Mambo created the first version of Joomla and released it in 2005. In 2008 it released its first stable version.
Since then, Joomla has had many updates. It is currently the second most used CMS in the world, behind WordPress. It occupies about 4% of all websites and a share of the content management market of approximately 5%.
What is WordPress?
WordPress is a CMS that entered the market in the mid-2000s. At first, it was dedicated to creating blogs, but little by little it increased its capabilities. Over time it was gaining a significant share of the website creation market.
Currently, a third of all websites have been created with WordPress. In addition, this CMS owns more than 60% of the content management market.
What do Joomla and WordPress have in Common?
Now that we are clearer about what these two CMS are, we have to point out some similarities that exist between them, before proceeding to confront Joomla versus WordPress:
From a technical point of view, both have been developed in the PHP programming language, and use the MySQL database system.
Both are open-source content management tools, which means that they are codes designed for users outside their creation to modify them and generate their own tools.
These own tools, for the most part, are add-ons that both WordPress and Joomla use to increase their functionalities. In the case of WordPress, we will call them plugins. In Joomla, we will call them extensions.
They also both use add-ons to improve the appearance of the websites they manage. For WordPress, these add-ons are called themes; for Joomla, the term templates are used.
Both CMSs support SSL (Secure Socket Layer) technology, which is currently one of the security measures for a website.
Joomla Advantages and Disadvantages
We will start by looking at the (possible) advantages and disadvantages of Joomla, the smallest contender, but with great vitality.
- Native functions:
Joomla was created from the beginning as a CMS, unlike WordPress, which in its beginnings was limited to creating blogs. That is why the Joomla configuration has many built-in functions, which in WordPress would require the use of external plugins. For example, activate HTTPS or change the domain.
- Multilingual sites:
One of the great advantages of Joomla is that it has native multilingual support. This means that it allows you to work on its platform with multiple languages, without installing extensions or making additional changes.
- Varied user management:
When using a CMS, it is necessary to manage the users who will have access to it. This is even more important on large websites. Joomla allows you to do it with many options, such as creating user groups for specific purposes, choosing in detail the type of permission, etc.
- Strong community:
Joomla is related to a Swahili word that means “all together”. And it is true; From the beginning, its creators wanted to strengthen ties with its user community and structured their organization around that concept. The relationship between the creators and the community is very good, and they stay in contact in order to improve the tool.
Disadvantages of Joomla
- Less ease of use:
The Joomla interface can be difficult for novice users, as it has many customization options. That is why its users are mainly programmers or other types of developers who have already had experience with other CMS.
More complex SEO optimization: Both Joomla and WordPress allow you to optimize the website for search engines (through plugins and extensions). However, the process can be a bit more complicated in Joomla due to its very interface.
- Not Ideal for Blogs:
Unlike WordPress, which started out precisely as a blogging platform, Joomla lacks some capabilities related to that specific type of website. Among them are comment management tools.
- The limited number of templates:
Unlike WordPress, Joomla does not have an official template library. If you want to improve the look of your website with a particular template, you will have to search the internet for it to implement it, which is impractical.
- The limited number of extensions:
Compared to WordPress, Joomla extensions barely reach around 8,000 in number. It is just a fraction of the number that WordPress has. This is undoubted because some of the functions that an extension would perform in WordPress are native here. However, finding a point extension for a specific problem could be tricky.
Advantages and Disadvantages of WordPress
Now let’s look at the advantages and disadvantages of using WordPress, the CMS giant of today.
Advantages of WordPress
- Ease of use:
CMS beginners will be very comfortable with WordPress. Its interface is relatively easy to understand and allows you to easily make changes to the website.
- A large number of themes:
If what you want is to change the appearance of your website, WordPress puts a huge library of themes at your disposal, both free and paid. It is estimated that there are more than 5,000 free themes for WordPress, and perhaps as many premium themes. Also, installing a WordPress theme is quite simple.
- A large number of plugins:
One of the great advantages of using WordPress. The CMS has a huge variety of plugins; Currently, it is estimated that they may be around 55,000. By installing WordPress plugins, you will be able to carry out many different tasks on your website that would not be easy for a novice user. With plugins, you can implement simple animations to setting up an entire electronic store.
- Simpler SEO optimization:
Originally, it is easy to customize the structure of URLs and content within WordPress. In addition, there are multiple SEO plugins for WordPress, the most famous being Yoast SEO.
Disadvantages of WordPress
- Plugin conflict:
The variety of plugins available is a plus, but also one of the biggest disadvantages of using WordPress. When you are using multiple plugins to give various capabilities to a website, the probability that one plugin will conflict with another is quite high.
Another consequence of the intensive use of plugins is the reduction in the speed performance of the website. The more plugins, the more load for the website, and therefore, less speed. This is very important for certain users (business owners, for example), but it is also vital for SEO. Google takes into account the speed of websites.
More appropriate for blogs. As we said above, in its beginnings WordPress was created as a content manager focused on creating blogs. Although you can create almost any website today, its basic structure still works best for blogging. For a beginner, trying to do something more complicated (such as creating a virtual store) will require plugin support, which can be problematic.
- Limited user management:
WordPress allows users to be created by entering certain data and assigning them a default profile. It is clear that this user management system is intended for blogs, and not necessarily for other types of websites. If you want to manage the permissions of your website in another way, you will have to use a plugin.
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What is the Verdict?
Our Joomla vs. WordPress could be solved in one sentence: both have different potentials and disadvantages.
One of the biggest differentiators between these two CMS is the level of knowledge of the users.
For a market full of users who want to enable their websites ASAP, it is understandable that WordPress has become the most popular CMS.
For developers who already have a certain level of technical knowledge, the variety of native options that Joomla provides makes it an interesting option worth considering.