1 min read

Drupal North East: Drupal versus Wordpress

One of the big questions of working in web design and development is what tool to choose. And when it comes to using a CMS, the question is often specifically “WordPress or Drupal?”

At this month's Drupal Northeast, Phill Brown took on the challenge of comparing their strengths and weaknesses.

The executive summary is that Drupal is best for

  • larger scale apps
  • integration with other systems thanks to its good API and loosely coupled modules)
  • multi-role sites WordPress just isn't good with it. 

WordPress is best for

  • blogs: which isn't surprising as that was its original use (and still is for many people today)
  • brochure sites as while it can only accomodate simple content types it is very easy to theme to a high standard. It also supports HTML5.
  • small shops: the WP Commerce module makes it easy to hook on a shop to a simple site, and the Woo Commerce module released today is drawing a lot of excitement.

The most interesting things for me (which I barely mention in my notes is the difference in approaches when it comes to theming best practices. I was suprised at how little information there was around at coding a plugin for making a custom post type, and found out from Phill's talk that in WordPress, it's encouraged to initialise post types in the theme rather than a plugin. (In Drupal, much is made of keeping structure and presentational markup separated). This makes sense in that it allows companies to sell magazine or shop like themes with custom post types included (though, as I found out working on a project, it makes life more difficult should you want to make structural changes).

Full Storify coverage below.