Drupal vs WordPress vs Joomla: Fair Comparison
6 min.

Choosing the right CMS is crucial in the digital age, where having a robust online presence is key to success. Among the options available, WordPress, Drupal, and Joomla stand out as the most popular and widely used platforms.

Each of these CMSs offers unique features and capabilities, making the decision-making process challenging yet critical for businesses and individuals alike. In this article, we aim to provide a fair and comprehensive comparison of these three platforms, helping you to decide which is best suited for your specific project needs.

Note: According to a ProCoders developer, “Joomla has been out of the game for about seven years now.” We’ve decided to still describe it for contrast, as we get a lot of questions about its qualities and eventual fate.

Brief History of The Three CMS

Let’s start our Drupal vs WordPress vs Joomla comparison right from the roots.

Evolution and Development of WP

WordPress, initially released in 2003 by Matt Mullenweg and Mike Little, began as a simple blogging platform. It has since evolved into a versatile and user-friendly CMS, powering everything from personal blogs to large corporate websites. Its rise to popularity is attributed to its open-source nature, ease of use, and the vast array of themes and plugins available.

Evolution of WordPress

Evolution and Development of Drupal

Created by Dries Buytaert in 2001, the platform started as a message board and quickly grew into a comprehensive open-source CMS. Known for its powerful and flexible framework, the platform is often the go-to choice for complex, high-traffic websites and has a strong reputation for scalability and security.

Evolution and Development of Joomla

Emerging from the Mambo project in 2005, the platform offers a middle ground in the WordPress vs Drupal vs Joomla question. It’s known for its extensibility and relatively straightforward user interface, making it a preferred choice for those who need something more powerful than WP but more accessible than the more complex competitor.

WordPress vs Joomla vs Drupal: Reasons for Popularity and User Base

The popularity of these CMSs stems from their open-source nature, allowing for continuous improvement and customization. 

“WP wins in terms of user-friendliness and a vast community. Drupal is favored for its advanced functionalities, ideal for complex sites, while Joomla is appreciated for its flexibility and balance.”

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Comparison: Joomla vs WordPress vs Drupal

WordPress Drupal Joomla: Ease of Use

  • WordPress: Known for its simplicity and intuitive interface, this CMS is ideal for beginners and non-technical users. It offers a straightforward dashboard and an easy content management process, making site building and maintenance relatively hassle-free. While there are WordPress pros and cons, ease of use is definitely about the best side of the platform.
  • Drupal: While offering powerful capabilities, the platform has a steeper learning curve. Its interface is less intuitive than WP, making it more suitable for those with some technical expertise or for projects that require complex data management and scalability.
  • Joomla: The CMS offers a compromise in the Drupal vs Joomla vs WordPress battle, featuring a user-friendly interface with more advanced capabilities but without complexity. It is suitable for users with intermediate technical skills or for those who need a robust solution with a smoother learning curve.

WordPress Joomla Drupal Comparison: Customization and Flexibility

  • WordPress: The platform offers a vast array of themes and plugins, allowing for high levels of customization without needing to code. While it is highly versatile, there are limits to its scalability, especially for very complex or high-traffic websites.
  • Drupal: This one excels in its ability to create complex, customized web applications. Its modular approach and extensive API support offer significant flexibility and scalability, making it ideal for large, content-rich sites.
  • Joomla: This one offers a wide range of extensions and templates and is more flexible than WP in handling complex content hierarchies. It’s a good choice for those who require more functionality than WP without the bigger challenges.
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Security of the CMS WordPress Joomla Drupal

  • WordPress: Due to its popularity, WP is a common target for hackers. While the core software is secure, much of the security responsibility falls on the user to keep themes and plugins updated and to employ security best practices.
  • Drupal: Known for its robust security, this CMS is often the choice for government and other high-security websites. Its community is highly proactive in identifying and fixing security issues.
  • Joomla: It offers reliable security features and updates, but like WordPress, the onus is on the user to maintain security through updates and best practices.

Support and Community

  • WordPress: Boasting the largest community among the three, WP users benefit from an extensive range of resources, support forums, and professional services available.
  • Drupal: While smaller than WP’s, this community is highly engaged, offering an extensive knowledge base, forums, and professional support for its users.
  • Joomla: The community is active and supportive, providing ample resources, extensions, and user forums. It may not be as large as WP’s, but is certainly helpful and knowledgeable.
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Cost Comparison of Joomla vs Drupal vs WordPress

  • WordPress: The platform itself is free, but costs can arise from premium themes, plugins, hosting services, and custom WordPress development services. However, it remains one of the most cost-effective solutions for small to medium-sized websites.
  • Drupal: While it’s also free, it may require more investment in terms of custom development and specialized hosting, particularly for complex sites.
  • Joomla: It is free to use, and like WP, costs will primarily be associated with additional extensions, templates, and hosting services.
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Scales of Websites

  • WordPress: Dominating the market, WP has a massive user base and powers a significant portion of the web, from small blogs to large corporate sites.
  • Drupal: The user base, while smaller, includes high-profile, traffic-intensive sites, reflecting its suitability for large-scale, complex projects.
  • Joomla: The platform maintains a respectable share of the market, used by a variety of websites, including e-commerce, personal blogs, and government sites.

Examples of Websites and Businesses Using CMS

To complete our CMS comparison Joomla vs Drupal vs WordPress, we decided to collect some of the famous websites built on each platform. This should give you even more insight into their differences and maybe help you pick the right one for your business!

  • WordPress: The New York Times’ blogs, Sony Music, and Forbes utilize WP for its ease of use and flexibility.
  • Drupal: Websites like NASA, The Economist, and the University of Colorado are powered by the CMS due to its robust and scalable framework.
  • Joomla: Harvard University and The Hill are examples of the platform’s projects, demonstrating its capability to handle diverse and complex site requirements.
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CMS Usage Statistics


When considering WordPress, Drupal, and Joomla, it’s important to look at their current standing in the global market and their growth trends over the past five years. WordPress undeniably leads the pack with a commanding presence in 30% of all websites worldwide, demonstrating its widespread adoption and trust among users. In comparison, Drupal holds a market share of 2.7%, while Joomla has seen a decline to 1.4%.

This data not only reflects the current preferences of website builders and developers but also indicates the future trajectory of these platforms. WordPress’s dominance is a testament to its versatility, user-friendliness, and vast community support, making it the most developing and prospective CMS in today’s digital landscape.

While Drupal and Joomla each have their unique strengths, WordPress’s continual growth and extensive use suggest it is the go-to choice for most web developers and content creators. Its scalability, ease of use, and robust community make it a versatile platform suitable for everything from simple blogs to complex corporate websites.

Is Joomla easier to use than Drupal?

Yes, it’s generally considered easier to navigate, offering a more user-friendly interface while still providing advanced capabilities.


Can WordPress handle e-commerce as effectively as other CMSs?

WP, with plugins like WooCommerce, can effectively manage e-commerce sites, though for very large-scale e-commerce projects, Drupal might offer more robust options.

Which CMS offers the best SEO capabilities?

WP is often praised for its SEO-friendly nature, especially with plugins like Yoast SEO. However, the other two also offer strong SEO capabilities with the right extensions and configurations.

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