4 Jul 2018, 12:47 — 10 min read
Summary: Another article in our Digital Transformation series sees Karan Aggarwal analyse key specifics like installation, ease of use, security, SEO, customisability etc. of Drupal or Wordpress to help you make an informed decision for your business website.
When it comes to creating a new website for your business, choosing a platform is one of the most crucial decision to take. I am pretty sure you must have faced a confusion between choosing Drupal or WordPress while deciding upon the CMS platform for your website. A content management system (CMS) is a software application or set of related programs that are used to create and manage digital content. It helps to determine how well your site runs, along with the number of tools and customisation options available to you. Let's have a look at some of the factors which makes them different and makes us choose one of them an easier task.
Let’s start by looking at what these are and how they are performing in the market:
WordPress is the world’s most popular content management system. Originally launched as a blogging platform back in 2003, WordPress now powers 29% of all websites and controls a massive 59.8% of the known CMS market.
Drupal has been around for even longer than WordPress, though it lacks WordPress’ market share. Originally launched in 2000, Drupal powers 2.3% of all websites and has a 4.6% share of the CMS market.
Installation and Simplicity
Installation and simplicity are some basic requirements from any CMS software. You want it to be quick to install and simple system that can still get you what you want. Both of them offer quick installation, but let’s check how both of them score on installation and simplicity.
WordPress has been quite popular for its five-minute installation process. Usually, web hosting companies offer installation scripts, so it makes it easy to install by just following the on-screen instructions. Even if you decide to install WordPress manually, it will take a few more extra steps, but the process will still be quick to complete.
Moreover, WordPress is easy to understand and is user-friendly. A person new to WordPress can also comfortably install a site on their own and publish posts without difficulties. Just by investigating user interfaces, going through menus and options, you will be able to modify the look & feel of your new website. A lot of resources and huge user community makes it easier to learn and adopt new things.
For Drupal, just like WordPress, the installation is pretty straightforward. Users just have to download the latest version from the official site and follow the installation guide. It takes a few minutes more to install Drupal, but you shouldn’t have problems during the process. But when it comes to user-friendliness, Drupal scores less as it not suitable for beginners. The CMS is complex as it will require at least some basic skills in HTML, CSS, and PHP just in order to manage the site.
So clearly WordPress wins over Drupal in case of installation and simplicity.
Search Engine Optimisation
There's already a lot said about Search Engine Optimisation (SEO). IT is of utmost importance for the health of your website. For your website, to do well in terms of page ranks and search results and online presence, SEO is something that is mandatory.
Both WordPress and Drupal are good for SEO. But, WordPress users have the benefit of amazing plugins such as the “All in One SEO Pack” and “Yoast SEO” that can help in terms of SEO.
Though, Drupal is no less when it comes to search engines – Yoast SEO is available for Drupal as well. Furthermore, Drupal comes with SEO-friendly features that WordPress lacks in the absence of external plugins.
Considering this, WordPress wins the SEO round due to the number of available plugins that makes a site SEO friendly in many different ways.
Security is something where no one wants to compromise, but practically in an absolute sense, it can never be achieved 100%. Best efforts are made to ensure the highest level of security and same is the case with WordPress and Drupal.
Drupal has been reputed for years for its secure and robust performance. Though some issues exist, such as numerous SQL injection vulnerabilities, the community has been quick to respond and for the most part, Drupal has fared well in terms of combating security threats. Moreover, the likes of The White House and The Economist prefer to rely on Drupal is a testimony to this effect.
WordPress is no way weak in terms of security either. You may be amazed to know that WordPress has way more security threats and malware attacks than any other software, but this is more because it’s popularity and less to do with any potential lack of security practices .
When using WordPress, simply because there is a ridiculously large number of plugins and themes that are readily available for WordPress, poses more chances of threats. Since the number of such plugins and themes is smaller for Drupal, the window for error too becomes smaller.
Clearly, this round goes to Drupal.
Ability to extend and customise
As mentioned above, WordPress is backed by a huge number of themes and plugins that can be used to extend its functionality and features. You can create any sort of website, web application or blog with WordPress by using the right combination of plugins and themes.
Whereas, Drupal despite being backed by extensions and modules that can help you extend its functionality, lacks here because the number is comparatively smaller. This does not mean you cannot customize Drupal; you still can do a lot with it, but you require a lot more efforts <& coding know-how> when accomplishing something unique with Drupal as you might when doing the same with WordPress. This could be a difficult task for non-developer.
WordPress wins this round being more customisable.
Content management and performance
Both Drupal and WordPress are equivalently good at content management and performance. While user interface and ease of use are a matter of perspective, as discussed above WordPress in simple and user-friendly as compared to Drupal. In terms of resources, both WordPress and Drupal are universally supported, coded mostly in PHP, and work well on even the lesser powerful servers or shared platforms. But installing a lot of modules is certain to slow down the CMS system but Drupal generally relies on lesser modules.
But, Drupal has a very noticeable downfall as compared to WordPress. Some basic tasks such as updating your CMS are more time-consuming in Drupal and way easier in WordPress.
The round also goes to WordPress.
Obviously, the complexity of your website might get you in trouble. So, what kind of help can you expect with WordPress and Drupal?
WordPress has a huge online community, official forums and support groups. There are also numberless online resources, tutorials, video guides and podcasts that will teach you everything about WordPress. This proves to be quite helpful support. There are vendors that can optimize your site, fix problems and help you get the best out of it.
Similar is the case with Drupal. It has an active online community. So you can expect comprehensive documentation, support forums, user groups, chat rooms and other resources. All of them will help you solve problems for free.
As WordPress is many times more popular than Drupal, it has a larger community and better support facilities.
As businesses go global, demand for multilingual sites keeps on growing. People have realized the power behind websites that run in several different languages. How can WordPress and Drupal help you with that?
During installation, WordPress will ask you to select a language for the admin area. You can also easily switch the language any time you want. But when it comes to having the content in more than language, you will have to look for third-party solutions. Luckily, there are more than a few plugins that let you translate the entire website into hundreds of languages. There are premium plugins or services that will help you build the perfect multilingual site.
Similarly, Drupal allows you to handle non-English sites without a problem. You will just have to activate the modules that are in charge of languages, and you will be able to translate the site into any language you want.
Here there is a tie between Drupal and Wordpress.
Drupal offers a lot of features out of the box, such as page caching, and a lot more. It is a flexible system, and once you master the ropes, you can virtually create any genre or nature of website using Drupal.
But WordPress is still highly usable and in a better overall situation than Drupal. It is more popular and therefore better supported, and easier to use and deploy. By using the right combination of plugins and themes, WordPress can serve your web design and development projects very well.
So which one are you going with for your website?
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Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views, official policy or position of GlobalLinker.
Posted byKaran Aggarwal
I am looking to connect with other business professionals. I am keenly interested in digital marketing, business development, operations, strategy planning, etc. Invite me to...
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