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When building a new website, it’s imperative to choose the right content management system (CMS). This choice will directly influence how simple or difficult it will be to maintain and manage your new site. 

Many new business owners, individuals, and organizations find themselves debating whether to choose Drupal or WordPress. Both are open-source CMS platforms, free to use, have a vast selection of plugins, as well as strong developer communities. 

Having more than 60% of the market share combined, it can admittedly be a tough choice. So, Drupal vs. WordPress – Which is the right choice for you?

What is WordPress?

WordPress is an open-source management system that you use by installing it into your web hosting server. The platform allows you to create, change, and manage your site. 

With thousands of themes and plugins available online, this free to use CMS powers more than 75 million sites, which makes up around 39.1% of all internet websites.

Some of the biggest corporations have built their website using WordPress, including:

  • Vogue.com
  • BBC America
  • Sony Music
  • Whitehouse.gov
  • TechCrunch
  • The Obama Foundation
  • The New Yorker
  • MTV News
  • The Official Star Wars Blog
  • Angry Birds

sony music wordpress

What is Drupal?

Unlike WordPress, Drupal is a cost-free open-source CMS that allows you to publish and remove content from your site. 

Although created just a few years before its competitor, Drupal only has a 3% market share, considerably less than WordPress. 

Despite this, it also powers some of the biggest websites in the world. This includes:

  • Government of Australia
  • The Economist
  • World Economic Forum
  • Fox
  • Pfizer
  • The Emmy Awards
  • Entertainment Weekly
  • NASA
  • Tesla
  • Pinterest

nasa website drupal

WordPress vs. Drupal

Pricing

When it comes to cost, WordPress, like Drupal, is completely free. When it comes to self-hosting, there are additional costs that you will have to incur, such as domain registration, security, hosting, and any premium themes or plugins you may want to use.

A highlight is that you can handle most tasks thrown your way, provided you know where to look, saving you the need to hire a website designer.

Drupal is also free to download, but just like WordPress, you will need to pay for your domain registration, security, and hosting. Additionally, you may need to hire a developer if you aren’t too technologically savvy. 

Ease of Use

Creating a website with WordPress is uncomplicated, and this is one of the biggest reasons users choose this CMS for their websites. Just choose a reliable web hosting service and follow up by installing WordPress. 

From there, you can create, edit, update, and customize your site. The best thing is that there are editors available which allow you to use a drag-and-drop system to create page layouts. 

Another benefit is that you don’t have to write a line of code to get your site up and running. If you lack technical knowledge like understanding programming languages, WordPress is your go-to choice.

Drupal works similarly to WordPress in that you need to choose a hosting service like Bluehost or Hostinger and then install Drupal. 

When making customizations to your site, you will need technical knowledge like programming in HTML and PHP. So, if you don’t know much about programming, we recommend you to use a developer.

In terms of ease of use, WordPress has the edge over Drupal.

Loading Speed

The speed at which your website performs is crucial to keeping users on your site. For example, the likelihood of bounce surges 32% as page load time goes from 1 second to 3 seconds.

This means that users want their questions answered, and they wanted those answers two seconds ago. 

Drupal takes the cake when it comes to speed over WordPress as it isn’t resource-intensive, meaning that it is lightweight and better equipped to handle hundreds of pages. 

With WordPress, several factors impact speed. This is best handled by managed WordPress hosting as it takes care of technical aspects such as server speeds, backups, scalability, updates, and security – all of which can influence performance. 

Themes and Plugins

Customizing your website is possible only when you have the right tools – that is – themes, and plugins available. In terms of numbers, WordPress has more than 50,000 plugins and over 12,000. On the other hand, Drupal has more than 35,000 modules (plugin equivalents) and over 2,500 themes. 

Obviously, there is more choice with WordPress, but there is also the added benefit of functionality. You don’t need to be a tech expert when choosing user-friendly themes and plugins from WordPress. With Drupal, there is a steeper learning curve when it comes to setting up your own extensions.

Website Security

It’s impossible to be 100% secure online, no matter which CMS you choose for your website. In saying that, Drupal does have a reputation for being one of the most secure CMS options available. 

This is mostly because it doesn’t rely as much on third-party extensions, making it less susceptible but not immune to hacking. 

As WordPress is used by more people worldwide, it is also a bigger target for cybercriminals. Security blunders are most often a result of users not taking the right security precautions. Again, using managed WordPress hosting virtually eradicates this issue.

SEO

Putting your best foot forward means optimizing your website for SEO. Both Drupal and WordPress are impressive in this area. Drupal has several modules available to further your SEO as well as built-in coaching.

WordPress has a plethora of SEO plugins that you can choose from, both paid and free. 

Final Word

While both WordPress and Drupal are excellent content management systems, they also have limitations. 

While Drupal offers top-notch security and speed, WordPress outshines when it comes to user-friendliness, themes, plugins, and cost. This is why it’s a substantially more popular choice amongst users.

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