Drupal Versus WordPress for your Website

6th June 2013

There is a raging debate going around about these two content management systems (CMS for short). One will hear a lot of pros and cons about either platform, depending mostly on what the user is trying to accomplish.

The statistics show that WordPress has far more penetration at a global level. At the same time, those that are more demanding in their CMS application often tend to appreciate the “power user” features that Drupal offers. At the end of the day, it really depends on what one’s expectations are and how willing they are to roll up their sleeves and get to work to accomplish their goals.

Image attributed to Jamie McCall

The Global Reach of WordPress

One of the reasons that WordPress shot to international fame is the fact that it is extremely easy to use. You do not have to be a programmer to get a site up and running in just a couple of hours. WordPress was also quite astute in their approach to the market. Early on, they recognized the growing need for bloggers to have an easy way to create and post their articles. Since most bloggers are really writers at heart, they did not have the technical skills or patience to learn complex applications.

By filling this rapidly growing niche, WordPress was able to capture the hearts and minds of bloggers worldwide. Some recent statistics also show that almost 10% of the most highly ranked websites in the world were created with WordPress. This proves that it is not only a good tool for the casual blogger, but it can actually accomplish more sophisticated functions. In many ways, it is offers a “one tool fits all” approach.

Drupal Offers Power to Spare

On the other hand, developers that are looking for a more robust and Enterprise-level solution will often turn to Drupal. If different types of permissions to access the site are necessary, Drupal provides far more flexibility. It can provide for administrator level permissions, and different permissions for other users. It also has a more robust and flexible API development interface, which many of the latest sophisticated websites require. But all this additional sophistication comes at a price, which can often be measured in terms of time. Many users find that it takes to three times longer to develop a fully functional site in Drupal than in WordPress.

If Simplicity Is Required

Back in the WordPress corner, there are several advantages that they offer which are hard to beat, and which appeal to a wide audience:

  • Themes galore. Because of its popularity, many developers have produced an incredible variety of themes. Many are free, but even those which require payments are pretty inexpensive and offer some nice customizable features, which can make any site unique.
  • A wide variety of plug-ins: again, because of its popularity, anyone can find a wide variety of very useful plug-ins which allows any site can be customized exactly as required.
  • Because of its relative simplicity and ease-of-use, WordPress can be the perfect solution for a simple e-commerce site. It will have all the functionality it needs, and will look great.

Thinking through the Project

Many people have their own opinions about the two platforms, mostly based on their own experiences. Before choosing, one should think about exactly what the end result is going to look like, how much flexibility in terms of password-protected privileges are going to be required and how much time one can devote to their project. Based on those variables and desired outcomes, one can make a more intelligent decision.

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