Your CMS, or content management system, has a lot to do with your SEO. Which system you choose to work with will determine what types of SEO practices are built into the system and happening automatically, which SEO aspects will need your attention, and then the interface you’ll be using to create great SEO in the first place. You work with it everyday, so it’s important you’re choosing the system that is right for your company.

Many companies will immediately jump to WordPress because it’s the most popular, but consider some of the benefits of WordPress vs. the two other major CMS systems—Joomla and Drupal—below.

CMS System Comparisons for SEO

Before jumping into some of the differences, there are a few similarities worth noting. For example, all three CMS’s are free, and all have one-click installation available that takes about 5 to 10 minutes. They all have around the same frequency of updates (between 35 to 50 days), and they can all be used for any type or size business. Although one may be better than the other in some cases, that isn’t to say certain choices can’t be used at all in certain cases.

A few of the details of each system:

Joomla Benefits

  • Background: Launched in 2005 from Mambo.
  • Size: A great choice for Ecommerce websites with a little bit of technical knowledge.
  • Downloads: 30 million.
  • Ease of use: Maybe not as easy as WordPress, but still considered easy.
  • Number of free themes and plugins: 900+ themes and 7,000+ plugins.
  • Major companies using this system: Harvard University.
  • Claim to fame: Joomla is considered a good balance between WordPress and Drupal in just about every aspect.

WordPress Benefits

  • Background: Released in 2003 by Matt Mullenwegg.
  • Size: Considered to work well for beginners and small business websites and blogs.
  • Downloads: 140 million.
  • Security: WordPress is secure, but because so many people use this system it may be necessary to install third-party plugins to protect your website.
  • Cost: A third-party plugin to protect your site may cost you despite the CMS system itself being free.
  • Ease of use: Very easy.
  • Number of free themes and plugins: 2,000+ themes and 27,000+ plugins.
  • Major companies using this system: Forbes, CNN, Sony.

Drupal Benefits

  • Background: Launched in 2001 by Dries Buytaert.
  • Size: The most powerful CMS, this works well for large-sized business websites (including ecommerce sites). It can handle thousands of pages of content easily, so if this is going to be your situation, this might be the best system for you.
  • Downloads: 15 million.
  • Security: This is considered the most secure of the CMS systems.
  • Ease of use: Advanced and a level of technical coding is needed.
  • Number of free themes and plugins (or “modules”): 1,800+ themes, 24,000+ plugins.
  • Cost: Although all of these CMS systems are free, none of the plugins, or moduals as Drupal calls them, are free. Therefore, it can get a bit pricy.
  • Major companies using this system: Linux, WarnerBrothers.

Other Options

Of course, these aren’t the only three CMS’s out there, they are just the most popular. Many companies even choose to build their own CMS using HTML and CSS; however this can sometimes be more expensive and take longer than if you were to use a CMS. Learn the benefits of building your own website here.

The Verdict

In the vast majority of situations, it’s hard to argue against WordPress. This is the most popular CMS system for a reason and works great for every type, size, and level of company and Webmaster. However, there are also more options out there for a reason. For some, WordPress doesn’t have the power that a company needs or it isn’t as intuitive for some people as it may seem for others. It depends completely on your company and your personal preference. Most people don’t change once they get started with one system, so really research and try to make the right choice right at the get-go.

I also highly recommend checking out this infographic where I got a lot of this information.

Which CMS system do you use and what are your thoughts? Have you ever tried more than one of these three options? Let us know your story and your thoughts in the comment section below.