A Content Management System (CMS) is software that enables any non-web designer to edit a website's content. Having a CMS means you can organise, edit and publish to your website without having to touch the HTML and CSS code used in creating the website. Two of the most popular content management systems are Wordpress and Joomla. Both of these platforms are well known for being easy to use, with huge scope for customisation. WordPress and Joomla can both be used to build modern, responsive websites with heaps of functionality.
So how would you know which one to choose for your website, whether you are building it yourself or have employed the services of a CMS website designer? At Midwinter Webdesign, we think both are excellent, they are the two most popular CMS platforms on the market, and are the only two CMS systems we build with, so let's take a closer look:
Joomla is an open-source CMS in 2005 licensed by Open Source Matters Inc. Joomla is the second most popular content management system, powering around 9% of all business owned websites on the internet.
WordPress has been around for slightly longer and was originally launched as a blogging platform in 2003. Since then it has evolved into a fully functional content management system. WordPress sites count for over 43% of all the websites on the whole internet, and it has the biggest market share of any content management system.
Both WordPress and Joomla are free, open-source software written primarily using PHP.
Neither WordPress or Joomla are stand-alone pieces of software and will only work when they are installed on a web server.
Joomla and WordPress both use themes and templates for design and layout and plugins, modules, and extensions for adding additional functionality.
WordPress is considered one of the easiest content management system to use, especially for people with no coding or development knowledge.
Many users find it handy that WordPress separates blog posts with static pages, so it's easy to differentiate between your blog and your content. With Joomla, every page you add is called an article that you can need to change by assigning categories.
WordPress has the largest selection of plugins and themes, making it super easy to add a whole variety of functionality to your site.
Because WordPress is so popular, it’s easy to find help when you need it. There are many blogs, Facebook groups, and developers out there, and chances are, if you are looking for help, someone will already have asked the same question or had the same problem as you.
Seeing as there are so many people working with and developing WordPress sites, it can be the case that development work on WordPress will be slightly cheaper due to the sheer volume of available resources.
Advanced user management – Joomla offers a more advanced system for user access controls as standard without the need for third party plugins.
Joomla’s components and modules give you extra flexibility for displaying non-standard content types.
Joomla's built-in multilingual Support makes it easy to produce a website in several languages. If you want to add separate languages with WordPress you'll need to install a third-party plugin.
A handy feature only available with Joomla is the ability to add different templates for different pieces of content. With WordPress you can only use one theme for the whole website.
Dedicated Joomla Support
Joomla comes with its very own, dedicated support system with official learning tools such as tutorials, videos and guides. You do have to pay for this however, but professional help will always be on hand without having to rely on other users. This can be invaluable for developers looking to dig a little deeper or when implementing advanced functionality.
Unfortunately, websites built with WordPress and Joomla will both be subject to security attacks, and no CMS can claim to be 100% secure.
One main benefit however to using Joomla is that it has its own 'Joomla Force SSL', meaning you don't need to install any plugins to set up SSL, which is not the case with WordPress.
All websites will need to factor in some level of SEO (Search Engine Optimisation). With more and more websites being launched every day, the internet is a very busy place, meaning SEO should never be overlooked.
In terms of features that enable you to implement SEO, both WordPress and Joomla have plenty. For example, many WordPress themes contain SEO features like schema markup, breadcrumb navigation, and open graph data. There's also a hugely popular SEO plugin for WordPress; Yoast which offers many features such as a traffic light system for ranking each page or article on a number of SEO related tasks.
Joomla is also a very SEO-friendly CMS. You can enable Search Engine friendly URLs, with an aim to make your URLs readable and memorable for both users and search engines. It's also easy to add metadata and title tags to your page without the need for a plugin.
Please bear in mind that neither of these platforms can implement your SEO for you, proper research goes a lot deeper and it's always wise to enlist the help of an SEO expert.
As mentioned above, at Midwinter Web Design of Swindon, we exclusively build CMS websites with both Joomla and Wordpress. Therefore we just don't feel the need to pick a favourite. (You wouldn't make us do that with our children, would you?!)
Both CMS systems come with a host of handy features and are easy to use, although we feel Wordpress has the edge for beginners and bloggers. For advanced security and extended functionality, however we do think that Joomla looks like the winner.
If you are looking for a new website, you are going to want a CMS, please get in touch with us to discuss your requirements and recommend which platform would be best suited for you.