Wordpress Vs Joomla - Opinions wanted

Hi all,

Im itching to get started on designing sites with my current ability in html/css/css3/some jquery/javascript and flash , but am really in a daze which CMS I should choose to use…?

The types of sites Im likely to build for example could be “dave the electrician”/“Lilly`s flower shop”/“sweet chocolate delights” etc etc.
Basically small sites, with the high possibility of building some small e-commerce sites, upto 20 pages maximum, but I need the facility for the business owner to make an ammendment here and there, whether it be a title/image or a little content.

Ive read numerous arguments for and against, in a magazine im subscribed too, but theres been nothing of any serious weight to push me in one direction.

Any views/thoughts on this will be greatly appreciated.

If you’ve narrowed the choice down just between WP and Joomla, I think you’ve gone off track. Joomla’s a bit of a mess, and WP is not really for general websites, though it gets hacked around for that purpose. If you want a free CMS, try out MODx, or if you are prepared to pay a bit, try ExpressionEngine. These are much better CMSes.

Hey Ralph,

I forgot to mention I did also look at concrete5 (concrete5 - Free CMS | Open Source Content Management System).

Yep, that’s another worth considering, though, from what I know about it, there aren’t as many options as offered by the more all-purpose CMSes. It sounds like you want an all-purpose CMS that’s not too fancy, so another worth looking at is CMSMadeSimple. (I personally think it’s best to learn to use one CMS that you can use for all purposes, and I ended up choosing ExpressionEngine, as it is more flexible that most, and very clean, as its code doesn’t interfere with your HTML and CSS etc.—which is generally a big problem with CMSes.)

Just had a quick look at that MODx and it seems pretty impressive, Ill take a more indepth look later on.
Which CMS (if any) do you use Ralph ?

Ignore the above personal question - I was typing this @ the same time as your last message :slight_smile:

While I really liked some of the free options—particularly MODx, and also SilverStripe—I still preferred EE. Apart from it not interfering with your front end code, I also like the way it allows you to define as many content areas on the page as you like. Most CMSes simply give you a big WYSIWYG input area in which to dump the entire page content, without much flexibility. Once you’ve used something like EE, it would be very hard to go back to that.

I would steer towards wordpress for projects like that. It will be easier to teach your clients and easier for them to maintain. If you need a larger site look towards Drupal. Joomla is kinda stuck in the middle of the two without really doing large or small sites all that well.

With any CMS or script it is important that you keep it updated.

If you code a site in Wordpress, and then a security vulnerability is found in Wordpress, but your users do not update the Wordpress script, then they are vulnerable to that security exploit and can have their website completely deleted and wiped out.

I would factor in, “ease of upgrading” into your equation. Wordpress offers a fairly straightforward upgrade process, where you just log into the admin panel and upgrade Wordpress. I’m not sure about Joomla! or any of the other CMS software mentioned.

My clients are also small local business owners and I’m building all of my clients websites with either Joomla or Wordpress. Don’t even bother to look at the other CMS any more. Some of my clients had another CMS site like drupal or Typo3 and they didn’t update the site because they were afraid to do something wrong. The system was too technical. Most business owners just want to run a business and don’t want to study on how to use their website. I think both Joomla and WP are the most easy for them to use.

For me there are several factors to stay with J & WP:
The first and most important one is that there are 1000’s of free extensions/plugins and theme’s available.

If you build your sites for “dave the electrician”, you can’t afford to spent a lot of time building the site. From my experience they don’t want to spent a small fortune on your skills, so you need a fast solution. I do the design myself and the rest is plugins, which are easily modified if needed.

Just like you I want my clients to be able to add text and photo’s to their own sites. With both cms they can do so in the front end and they never have to look at the admin site if they don’t want to.
I only have to give them a 3 page pdf with some images that show: click here, you’ll see this, go there. Tell them where they can post the content and that’s it.

I do offer my clients a maintenance contract and all of them agree on that. It’s only to keep all software on the site updated to the latest versions.
Both CMS’s can be updated very easily:
With Joomla you just have to upload the patches to your server, that’s it. Most of the extensions are starting with update notifications so that part is also getting much quicker.
Wordpress is even easier: It provides a one click update option for WP and even all the plugins. (you can use plugincentral for this) So that’s a maintenance contract for 5 minutes work. (I don’t tell my clients this :blush:)

WP is much smaller and faster than Joomla, but both are very well documented and information can be found all over the web.

WP has excellent SEO options, with or without a plugin. Joomla is a bit more difficult, defenitely needs an extension, getting better with the new J1.7

As said before there are 1000’s of plugins available for both CMS, but to my opinion it’s easier to find the right Joomla extensions. (this page WordPress › WordPress Plugins compared to this page: [url=http://extensions.joomla.org/extensions/]Home - Joomla! Extensions Directory)

Your client wants a 20 page ecommerce store? Just install an extension and it’s done.

For any cms you choose, try to look from your customers point of view. They need to update the site and don’t have the technical background / website skills that most of us do have.

Anyway, just my 2 cents, I hope it makes any sense,


Joomla is a pain to upgrade. You basically have to upload a bunch of new files overwriting your old files. The Wordpress upgrade process is unbelievably easy. Just click “update” and it does all the updating for you. Anyone can do it.

same story happened so many time to lot of guys looking for the same answer but never any where found a clear answer as its all depends on the requirement and business needs as some SEO experts says that wordPress is best some say Joomla even other says Drupal . same thing could be seen on seo top 10 tips dot wordpress dot com . but still not conclusion

In the joomla world, plugins/extensions/themes aren’t always free. Most of the best ones have a price tag.

In the wordpress world, most everything is free, though there are are some themes which have price tags and some plugins which ask for donations or charge for the “plus” version beyond the free version.

As for usablility, I’ve always found Joomla’s admin interface confusing, even as a web developer. However, I can only speak for version 1.5, not the new 1.7 version. Wordpress tends to be much more straightforward, even for beginners.

I’d second Force Flows comment that the admin on the two are quite different. Joomla I reckon was built by geeky programmers for geeky programmers and slowly became more sensible as people got involved. Wordpress was built as a blog platform - for the people and as such retains a more user friendly admin.

To me there is no competition on this one for trying to hand over a website to a client, there’s no way I would hand over something in Joomla. It is fine for computer geeks that don’t mind being geeky but that doesn’t represent your typical electrician. Wordpress all the way IMO.

must WordPress . it is very easy to use . and you will be able to change everything easily .you will find huge theme free and premium . you will get a lot of tutorial .

WordPress is best CMS

Since you are choosing between Joomla and WordPress I say go with WP. For the end user is it easy to maintain which is very important. Like others have said you cannot just hand Joomla over to someone who is inexperienced (not without a lot of hand holding). Also IMHO it is just too heavy. Business owners do not want to take the time to maintain something like that. While I don’t agree that WP is the best CMS (personally 99% of the time I use Drupal) it can get the job done with a little effort on the part of the developer and its pretty straightforward for the end user to wrap their head around.

I prefer wordpress bcoz it is much user friendly and for simple blogs which does’nt have any shopping cart facilities.

I vote for WP. If you want to built strong website you better choose Drupal rather than Joomla.WP is doing great in search engines.

For a shop with potential eCommerce capabilities, I’d use something like ExpressionEngine. It’s commercial and you’ll have to buy an eCommerce add-on to get that functionality. However, EE is one of the most robust CMSes I’ve used, and I’ve used quite a few.

WordPress is good too, so is ModCMS, Textpattern and a few others, though the latter two as well as EE allow for 100% code control whereas you won’t get that with WordPress, not without hacking some core files and/or writing plenty of filters into the functions.php file, something that can become quite cumbersome over time.

I won’t comment on Joomla as I’d not touch it with a ten-foot pole.

Thanks for this thread I’m looking into finding the best CMS had a little dabble in WP but not joomla yet.

Thanks again


Wordpress is best.its more simple to work and administration…