Joomla is the second most popular content management system, second only to WordPress. Why would anyone ever pick it over WordPress, though? Isn’t it much more challenging to learn? Yes, it is. But there are other reasons why a web designer might decide to go with it. For more in-depth information on the technical side of things, visit this guide on building a Joomla website.
Free As In Freedom, Not Just Beer
Like its most famous rival, Joomla is an open-source platform. That is significant to developers, as it means the code is transparent, and they can modify it. Most web design projects are not going to require this level of modification to the backend. However, situations do still occur where backend hacking becomes necessary.
Backend hacking is also fundamental to learning. Novice and student developers: take heed! You can learn a lot from studying a CMS like this. Since it uses minimalist coding standards, app devs in learning can see what clean coding looks like and does, as well as how quickly it breaks down when unstable or unnecessarily long code gets added into the mix.
WP can quickly become weighed down and sluggish with large websites if the design doesn’t get specialized care. Joomla is trimmer and thus less prone to becoming bloated. Because of this, it can quickly adapt to any size of the website. Its plugins are equally lightweight, making it easy to choose any combination of its 8000+ extensions without fearing system lag.
With smart use of its extensions, Joomla can host any website, including an eCommerce site. The extensive database of extensions combined with the flexibility and adaptability of this CMS makes it easy to mold. Having so much freedom helps negate the complexities geared towards developers.
Over 200,000 active users makeJoomla’s community one of the strongest, especially since so many of them are developers. There is a high probability that if you have an issue with it, someone else has had that same issue and can help you resolve it. The Joomla community also treats every user as a beta tester, so bugs and security holes get quickly discovered and patched.
Another aspect of this community that makes it especially support friendly is the attempts made to collectively pool user’s knowledge into a documentation website. That provides users with a one-stop-shop to finding support and makes it much easier to search for help topics.
Just A Slight Bend in The Road
Another noteworthy feature is that its learning curve is much gentler than many other similarly trimmed CMS systems such as Drupal. A novice user can still set up a site, and a developer can design a site without prior experience. Joomla also provides simple, direct access to meta-tagging so that websites can be built from the ground up with SEO in mind.
Even installing it is easy, thanks to an auto-installer script.
Secure & Multilingual
What is the point of getting on the world wide web if half the world can read your content? Joomla makes this easy by including a language translation engine in its default installation script. Of course, along with that universal access comes more security risks. Fortunately, it also has a highly distinguished history of being secure. If you search for “Joomla security issues,” you will not find a list of past security bugs and patches. You will find a list of user errors that lead to creating an insecure website. With a little research to avoid common user mistakes, anyone can build a secure website using this CMS.
Who Wins Your Content?
WordPress is an excellent platform for novices, but Joomla offers the best in performance, flexibility, extensibility, security, language support, and more. Thus, it is essential to ask yourself the question of whether you can handle a slight learning curve to gain these types of improvements to your website. While a business landing page may not seem worth the trouble, more significant sites could be well worth the leap in the end.
If you are a developer, consider what kinds of websites you could build through using a platform that is made from the ground up to give you the freedom of choice. Imagine how much more you could get done with a platform that starts you out with clean, bloat-free code. Imagine how much more you could learn about reducing your line numbers!
If there is no specific reason that you’re using WordPress for, why not give Joomla a shot? It could just be your next favorite content management platform.