If you own a Singapore website or have ever worked with a web design company, then you know how difficult it can be to build the perfect site or blog. And this is largely due to management system software, or Content Management System. A CMS gives you the ability to create a professional site within just a matter of hours. Thanks to plugins and themes, you don’t have to be bothered with code or have any knowledge of CSS or HTML. And the best part is you can control several sites and use SEO best practices on all of them.
The CMS you choose will largely depend on the type of site that you’re interested in creating such as a blog, portfolio, or e-commerce store. Although WordPress is considered to be one of the most popular choices, it’s hardly the only options out there. In fact, some cater specifically to certain niches.
Let’s use WordPress as our starting point and discuss all of its top features as well as its weaknesses and then compare it to other alternatives. This will help you to make a more informed decision about your CMS. Just keep in mind that the best CMS is one that matches the needs and resources of your business.
If you’re going to employ a team of developers then an open source CMS may be your best option. If you’re a beginner or have a small budget, then you need a system that is intuitive and that will leave a lot of room for customisation.
What is WordPress CMS?
When it comes to CMS, WordPress is the most popular. In fact, it powers well over 20% of all websites. Though it’s perfect for small businesses, its most notable clients are MSNBC, Rolling Stones, and the Sweden government.
In the beginning, WordPress was solely focused on blogging, but as time progressed it added more features and plugins. It’s currently a full-scale CMS and can design the most powerful sites. Most Singapore businesses appreciate how easy WordPress is, which is in part due to its community and the plugins that are offered for every scenario. Below are a few features that make WordPress ideal:
Ease of use: WordPress takes less than 5 minutes to install. You don’t need any technical expertise in order to do this. In fact, if you are able to use Microsoft Word, then you will find it extremely simple to use the WordPress editor.
Add-ons: WordPress offers a countless number of themes, plugins, and widgets. And many of these are completely free. This gives users the ability to fully customise their site. This is especially helpful in the case of small to medium-sized Singapore businesses.
SEO Integration: One of the things that make WordPress CMS shine is that it promotes SEO best practices. Users can find plugins that help them optimise their content as well as analyse the content for their keyword focus.
Awesome support: WordPress has a huge community. And many rely on it to receive the answer that they need. This usually includes tutorials and help with troubleshooting.
Customisable: WordPress gives you the ability to change the appearance of your site by providing you with countless templates. And the best part is that these themes often come with optimised versions that will help to ensure that your site remains consistent across all devices.
This isn’t to say that WordPress is perfect. There are a few things that could stand improvement. Here are a few things that you need to keep in mind when making your decision about WordPress:
Some modifications require CSS and PHP knowledge: Though there are several free templates that you can choose from, a lot of them look pretty similar. In order to achieve a look that is more unique you need to have some experience with HTML and CSS so that you can properly modify them.
Plugins lead to bloat: If you want to be able to compete with the functionality of other CMS, then you need to install plugins. The problem is, this can sometimes lead to issues with efficiency. Also, there are clone plugins which offer the very same functionality and it makes it very time-consuming to find the best one. Worst of all, certain plugins tend to bloat your site’s memory use and size.
Security: WordPress script does not offer the level of protection that other CMS do. If you don’t have the latest versions your plugins can sometimes be hacked. Unfortunately, the only solution, in this case, is to install a third-party security plugin.
WordPress vs the competition
Since WordPress is considered to be the most popular CMS, let’s take a moment to compare it to the rest of its competition. We’ll measure it against Drupal, Joomla!, Squarespace, and Wix. When comparing these platforms, you need to consider how flexible each is, how they will meet your needs in the future, how much of an ROI each has, and one that aligns with your specific level of expertise. Here are the elements that we will use to compare each:
One of the most important aspects of any website is how the site is hosted.
When choosing a platform, you should always think about the cost of both developing and maintaining your site. The platform should ideally allow you to work within your budget.
If you’re a beginner, you need to think about how difficult it will be to create a site. How quickly can you create it and how much of a learning curve is involved? Does it require code?
Design and layout
Keep in mind that your design and interface should be user friendly. Not only that but it should help you to create a brand that stands out.
Does the platform offer third-party plugins and themes? Also, does it use apps in order to add on features to your site and adapt the design
If you ever plan to sell products online, then your CMS platforms need to offer you the ability to implement e-commerce.
No matter what type of industry you’re in, all sites are vulnerable to security breaches. So you need to know how your CMS will protect you against these incidents.
It’s essential that your CMS has a developer community that’s active. It needs to offer the latest add-ons as well as Q&A’s and online tutorials.
WordPress.com vs WordPress.org
WordPress is offered on two distinct platforms. What makes these platforms different is the hosting.
While WordPress.com offers an all-in-one package that includes free hosting, WordPress.org requires that you handle your own hosting. You’ll need to sign up with a third-party host.
WordPress is free, however, if you want additional features, then you’ll have to pay for them. With WordPress.org you get thousands of free add-ons. You only pay for your hosting and domain registration.
Both versions offer easy and intuitive navigation and interface. However, WordPress.com is a little better when it comes to ease of use due to the hosting and installation being taken care of.
Design and layout
Each platform gives you the ability to design your pages with the themes that you get from the theme repository. However, WordPress.org allows you to perform endless customisation whereas WordPress.com requires users to upgrade in order to make these types of customisations.
WordPress.org gives its users access to all of its plugins, free or paid, so that you can fully maximise the potential of your CMS. However, WordPress.com offers built-in plugins and in order to add them, you must upgrade to a paid plan.
It’s easier to monetise your website if you are self-hosted on WordPress. WordPress.com doesn’t give you the ability to create an online store. You can’t create an online store with WordPress.com.
One thing that Singapore business owners should keep in mind when considering a free WordPress.com plan is that your website will come with WordPress branding and you won’t make any money from the banner ads. You can only remove these ads by upgrading your plan. WordPress.org is free of branding from the very beginning.
Also, if you’d like to make money from ads, then you can use plugins to add them on. And the best part is, you can keep all of what you earn. You can’t sell ads with WordPress.org unless you upgrade your plan. Another important factor is that unlike WordPress.org, WordPress.com won’t allow you to create membership sites that offer different levels of access.
Singapore businesses that use WordPress.com don’t have to worry about site security because it’s all taken care of it. However, those who use WordPress.org are completely responsible for keeping their website secure, including all of the updates, optimisation, and backups.
Both platforms offer great support and an endless amount of developers. WordPress is driven by its community and volunteers. It’s easy to find guidance here.
Creating a website on WordPress’ free version will mean that you will have limited access to plugins, which can essentially hold back your development. However, this platform does allow you to keep all revenue that you earn and gives you complete control over your website’s income.
WordPress vs Drupal
Currently, Drupal powers over a million sites which makes it the third most popular CMS worldwide. In fact, this particular platform is considered the most powerful and when it comes to website design, it has the most potential for building a large variety of complex web apps and projects. The catch is it’s also considered to be the most challenging to use, so it’s not ideal for beginners.
Drupal and WordPress share a few similarities. Both of these platforms are free and offer a wide range of add-ons for the functionality of your site. Both have loyal user and developer bases. Also, the two were released on a few years apart. However, what makes WordPress more popular is its ease of use. Let’s take look at how these platforms compare:
Both options are self-hosted so the costs will rely on which you plan you choose. Site performance differs between the platforms. SEO is built into both, but Drupal was created to be SEO friendly while WordPress only offers plugins to help with optimisation.
You can download and install both platforms for free, however, the costs for building differs. It tends to be much more expensive to hire a Drupal developer than it is to hire a developer for WordPress due to the scarcity of training.
In order to build a Drupal website, you need to have basic coding knowledge. This platform is much more technical than WordPress. So beginners may want to start with WordPress.
Design and layout
When it comes to performance and content management, both platforms are pretty efficient. However, Drupal offers an interface that is minimalistic and intuitive with structures and components that are pre-configured. You’re able to create a specific style of the site without having to do a lot of coding.
When it comes to adding a function such as plugins and themes, you can do this through WordPress’ main menu. If you want to tweak your site in Drupal, you use modules. Drupal relies less on plugins so this helps them to perform better. It’s less resource-intensive than WordPress. For those who have experience with HTML, Drupal will offer better scalability. In fact, it has the best scalability of all CMS.
Whether you’re working with Drupal or WordPress, it’s pretty easy to create an e-commerce site on either. In the case of WordPress, you use plugins. In the case of Drupal, you use modules.
Another element that both CMS excel in is website security. Drupal is even powerful enough to handle government information. And any shortcomings that WordPress has can be taken care of with a few plugins. However, it’s important to keep in mind that both require you to ensure that your sites are always up to date. While this is easier with WordPress, Drupal needs developers to install or update the software and modules.
Drupal is similar to WordPress in that it offers users comprehensive documentation and awesome support through their site. WordPress has a lot of developers, but it doesn’t allow for as much customisation as Drupal. Developers can make as many changes to Drupal as they want which is why Drupal sites are usually very unique.
In short, both platforms are excellent tools. However, there are a few key differences such as the learning curve that comes with Drupal. Of course, WordPress is less secure and powerful than Drupal but it’s still a better overall solution. Drupal requires that users have a certain technical expertise and can lead to advanced sites once you learn how it works. However, you must be able to either commit to the time it takes to learn or have the budget to hire someone.
WordPress vs Joomla
Joomla! is an award-winning, free CMS. It’s known for offering the best balance of accessibility and extensibility. What makes Joomla! A great option is that it’s very intuitive. It powers millions of sites and apps, from personal blogs to corporate sites and various intranets such as Nintendo.
Of all the other CMS, Joomla! and WordPress are the most similar in regards to customisability and functionality. Both of these platforms are free, easy to setup and use, open-source and can be used by people of all skill levels. However, there are a few differences.
Joomla! And WordPress are both self-hosted.
Both of these platforms are free to use. However, in order to build a website with Joomla! you may pay extra for a developer, depending on their level of expertise.
Joomla! and WordPress are similar in their back-end requirements, but Joomla! users must have more technical knowledge than WordPress users, out of the box. However Joomla! Isn’t that much more difficult to use than WordPress. It mostly takes an understanding of Joomla!’s terminology.
Design and layout
Each of these platforms gives you the ability to customise themes, though WordPress offers more than Joomla!. Both have intuitive user interfaces so that you can easily update and modify your design and layout.
Much like WordPress, Joomla! has a very active developer community which supplies the platform! With various free open source extensions and plugins. Joomla! even comes with built-in multi-language support. You can download the Polylang plugin for exactly the same service on WordPress.
If you’re interested in creating a site that has an integrated e-commerce store, then Joomla! can provide you with e-commerce extensions so that you can manage all of your content and products in the exact same place. This is similar to WordPress on which you are able to add plugins to create your store with WordPress.
When you have everything set up, updating and maintaining your Joomla! site is similar to WordPress. Both of these platforms regularly put out new versions of software, and every update requires extensions, plugins, and templates to be updated individually each time. The only difference is Joomla! releases more updates so it will require more work.
Both Joomla! and WordPress have large communities of developers. However Joomla!’s structure is more complicated so the learning curve, even for seasoned developers, can be quite steep.
If you’re trying to choose between Joomla! and WordPress then it really does matters what your skill level is and how complex your website needs to be. Joomla! shines when it comes to complexity but WordPress gives people the ability to build their sites with ease.
WordPress vs Squarespace
Squarespace is another straight-forward user interface that creates competition for WordPress. But it’s important to note that Squarespace features a restrictive hosting plan and is missing several standard features like themes, customisation, and add-ons.
Squarespace is different from WordPress in that these sites include the cost of hosting built into its monthly price. This ensures that your hosting is compatible and optimised for your site, that the speed of your site is monitored, that your receive web analytics, and that your site security is monitored.
It can cost as little as $8 per month to run a website on Squarespace and this is similar to WordPress’ standard shared hosting. However, with Squarespace, if you use additional features you’ll pay extra monthly fees. This platform’s basic plan is extremely limited. It offers a few add-ons and features and a limited number of pages and products that you can sell. WordPress gives you the ability to use your site in any way you would like and choose your own host.
Squarespace doesn’t offer a lot of choices so it’s easy to use and navigate, making it the ideal choice for beginners. Adding videos, audio files, and images are much more straightforward than on WordPress. And this is largely due to its drag and drop editor. Though intuitive, WordPress has a bigger learning curve.
Design and layout
Squarespace allows users to create beautiful layouts. In fact, part of their tagline touts this fact. However, in order to customise their site, users need to have a knowledge of CSS and JSON.
When it comes to extensibility, Squarespace falls short. Templates are limited and users can only change specific features using the website customiser feature. Users can only work with the features and plugins that are built-in. On the other hand, WordPress offers thousands of plugins for those who would like to add new features.
While you can open your own e-commerce store with Squarespace, it’s only good for selling a few products on one single page. It’s not ideal for Singapore entrepreneurs who are working on their first e-commerce site. Each plan on Squarespace features a restriction on how many products users are able to sell, and this makes it more expensive than selling products on WordPress’ shared hosting.
Also, you’re not able to sell internationally with Squarespace since you’re only allowed to use Stripe for your payment processing, and even this is only available in certain countries. This limits the number of customers you can do business with.
Squarespace does allow you to sell both digital and real products, but you can’t create secure membership sites which are a huge part of a business for bloggers, writers, and etc. WordPress, however, does allow you to create membership sites.
What’s great about Squarespace is that it’s an all in one platform. This means that they will take responsibility for the security of your site. While WordPress requires to buy and configure your security software, if anyone tries to hack into your Squarespace site, they will take care of it. This includes the backups.
Squarespace users do enjoy a few benefits of self-hosting. This platform is developer friendly and developers can help to unlock extra functionality. Each site allows you to retain ownership of the content that you create, however, WordPress provides tools that are easier to manage if you would like to export your site. There are no restrictions with WordPress. Squarespace users can access support whenever they need it at no additional cost, via email tickets and live chat. And this means they don’t have to browse forums or hire a developer in hopes of finding a solution, as is the case with WordPress.
Squarespace limitations make it challenging for online businesses to scale. While WordPress wins when it comes to web publishing services, Squarespace is a simple platform and it’s ideal for small Singapore businesses that only require limited functionality. Ultimately, WordPress beat Squarespace in every area.
WordPress vs Wix
Wix CMS is one of the leading cloud-based platforms and have been around since 2006. When it comes to simplicity, this platform is hard to beat. However, in terms of add-ons and customisation, this CMS falls short.
Wix offers hosting. In fact, this website builder is all-inclusive. So users can build their site wither their tools and on their software.
The initial cost of WordPress is free, the user only needs to pay for hosting. However, the cost of Wix’s can quickly add up if you’re interested in something more than a basic website. Also, with Wix’s free plan users get a site that features on-page ads and a subdomain with a URL that appears like https://yoursite.wix.com/yoursite.
Paid plans are tiered– from basic to eCommerce and VIP. Each of these plans come bundled with crucial services and there’s no unlimited file storage or bandwidth. As the cost of each Wix plans increases, they become more expensive than their competitors. All of the things that users pay for with Wix can be accessed for free with WordPress.
When it comes to simplicity, WordPress and Wix are not too different. Wix is a powerful platform and its tools are easy to use. Wix uses AJAX technology and makes dragging and dropping a seamless process which gives Wix a slight edge over WordPress. With Wix, you can choose any element on the site, rearrange, edit, or even add media and content which makes it perfect for beginners. The only problem is Google search engine bots sometimes run into issues when crawling these sites. And this can have a huge impact on your SEO.
Design and layout
Wix offers hundreds of customisable templates. However, WordPress offers thousands, covering themes that are the most requested. Most of these templates are free, while others require payment. The problem with Wix is that you can’t easily switch from one template to another. With WordPress, changing your template is easy.
Wix’s basic plan, unlike WordPress, doesn’t supply add-ons. In order to gain access to certain add-ons like analytics tools as well as e-commerce plugins, you need to upgrade to a premium paid plan and pay for the extra add-ons outside of your plan. The cost of WordPress increases when you use premium plugins, but users have access to thousands of free plugins and apps and this helps to keep the costs down.
You can create an e-commerce site on Wix with their Premium eCommerce Plan. This plan gives users the ability to store up to 10GB with at least 20GB bandwidth. However, you could choose WordPress and find better hosting that offers more data. What’s convenient about Wix is that it’s to set up, but this platform is not able to compete with more powerful platforms, like WordPress and its WooCommerce plugin.
Wix hosts all sites on its own servers, so it’s chiefly responsible for the security of your site. As previously stated WordPress requires a lot of maintenance when it comes to security plugins and its updates.
When compared to WordPress, Wix’s developer community and customer support are lacking.
WordPress easily beats out Wix. Wix is extremely easy to use, however, WordPress gives users access to plugins and themes that benefit them more in the long run.
WordPress platform is the number one platform because it’s the easiest to use and helps you to create a professional looking site. Not only that but it’s pretty versatile, especially when it comes to e-commerce. It’s easy to see that if Singapore business owners want to ensure that their marketing strategy is a success, they need to use WordPress.