WordPress vs. Drupal for Beginners: Pros and Cons

If you are looking to start up a webpage it is likely that you have heard of the many options there is for coding that page for public view. While the use of hard HTML code is most likely to allow more creative freedom if you are either too inexperienced or too pressed for time to use this method the next best bet is a content management system (CMS).

Two of the most popular CMSs offered today are WordPress and Drupal. While they both operate under similar principles and are available as open source software (read: free) there are distinct pros and cons to each choice.

Especially if you are a beginner, it is important to weight these pros and cons and familiarize yourself with the basic setups of these programs before making any decisions. Luckily, however, both offer fantastic support options as well as many web articles that can help you out once the choice is made.

WordPress Is Easy

WordPress is by far the most popular CMS on the market right now due to its user-friendly interface. Installation is straightforward and its prompts making starting and maintaining a website or blog simple for even the most novice of web hosts.

Included in the open source download are features that allow comments and trackbacks, profiles of bloggers as well as pinging services. This will help in terms of analysis of your website’s traffic and is again simple in its operation.

The major downside of WordPress is its limitations in terms of development. Even if you are not too familiar with hard code now, if you intend on learning it or hiring someone who does to enhance your webpage in the future WordPress is extremely limited in its ability to change. Basically, this is not developer-friendly software.

In addition, the upgrades that WordPress offers are notoriously buggy. It is of the utmost importance that you review comments on any upgrade or plug-in that WordPress offers before you blindly download it.

Drupal for Developers

In contrast, Drupal is a much more developer-oriented program that allows for a high level of hard code to be integrated into its CMS. Because of this, the program has earned the nickname the “Developer’s CMS.”

Drupal is most functional for anyone who wishes to exercise more control on their website’s content and balks at WYSIWYG – What You See Is What You Get.

Because of this reputation among developers, Drupal offers a broader and more learned support group of developers that can help you if you are just beginning to explore hard HTML code.

On the other hand, Drupal is not user-friendly because of this flexibility. Anyone who is new to the website management game and either doesn’t have the time to learn code or doesn’t have the funds to pay someone who does is better off with a more basic and user-friendly CMS.

Bottom Line

Which CMS you choose as a beginner for your website will largely depend on your won skills and your budget. If you are the only person working and you don’t have time to learn hard code WordPress is clearly the easier and more functional choice. Just remember that if you do decide to diversify at a later date you will likely want to upgrade to a more developer-friendly CMS.

Drupal, by contrast, offers its users the ability to modify content at a much more sophisticated level and is termed the “Developer’s CMS.” If you know html and want to use those skills in your site design or can afford to hire someone who does, this is clearly the better choice due to its user flexibility and network of developer support.

I make most my sites in WordPress. You can make pretty good minimalistic templates that look good. If you want to take a look at my example, see this people search site/article and let me know what you think. Cheers!

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