There is no shortage of powerful content management systems, many of which are capable of being used to build any type of site you can imagine. That does not, however, mean that every content management is the best fit for every site. I’d like to take a look at two content management systems in particular: ExpressionEngine and WordPress. Both are powerful and both have been used to build everything from blogs to the largest enterprise publishing operations, but each has particular strengths.
WordPress In A Nutshell
WordPress has come a long way since it’s early days as a blogging engine. The case can now be made that WordPress is full-fledged content management system, and that it can be used for much more than just blogging and other “post” based publishing tasks.
And of course, WordPress is far and away the most popular content management system on the web, which has encouraged the evolution of an active community of developers who have created many thousands of plugins and themes. Integrating new functionality into a WordPress site is as simple as installing a plugin, and there are plugins to fit almost every occasion.
Its backend interface is relatively simple to use, which makes it a great option for professionals seeking to provide their clients with a site that they can manage by themselves.
Customizing Meta Data Is Easy
WordPress not only offers default site templates with clean code, but it also allows you to easily customize each page for SEO. Whether you’re building a landing page or a blog post, you can create unique title tags, meta descriptions, and URLs that are optimized to the keywords your potential customers are searching for. You can also include custom excerpts or add plug-ins, depending on what type of site you’re trying to build.
Fast Site Speed
When Google or another major search engine develops rankings, it takes site speed into account—which can only be beneficial to WordPress users. WordPress sites tend to have fast load times that can be made even faster through certain plugins, like the WP Super Cache plugin, created to optimize site speeds. However, it’s important to be aware that load time can vary depending on which template you use for your web pages or blogs.
You Don’t Need to Be Skilled in Web Design
WordPress caters to those with little experience in web design, making it easy for companies in the home service industries—HVAC contractors, landscape design firms, flooring companies, etc.—to use. Because you don’t need a skilled web developer to upload content on WordPress like you do with other content management systems like Joomla or Drupal, you can build a site much faster. This also means that you can launch an SEO campaign much faster and with less cost to your business.
Plug-ins Enhance Site Functionality
You can further customize your WordPress site by choosing plug-ins that work to enhance your overall site functionality. And there are some plug-ins developed specifically to improve SEO—like WordPress SEO by Yoast. This plug-in is especially popular because it adds options to your “Add a new post” page that help with optimization by scoring your content for key components like title tags, meta descriptions, and H1 tags. You can also use Yoast to create an XML sitemap and other features that can further enhance your site.
Crawling WordPress Sites Is Easy for Search Engines
Not only are WordPress websites easily customizable, but they also have a simple framework and link structure that’s shared among numerous other websites. Because search engines are familiar with these types of sites, it’s easy for Google’s spiders to find your web pages, index them, and rank them
ExpressionEngine In A Nutshell
ExpressionEngine was built from the ground up as a way to manage complex content scenarios, and it makes no assumptions about the content model a site will have. ExpressionEngine makes it much easier to design tailored content models with multiple content channels, relationships, and custom fields. ExpressionEngine is almost infinitely flexible.
Which Should You Choose?
When we’re thinking about which content management system is best, we have to ask the question: “best for what purpose?”
If you need a relatively simple business brochure site, a small eCommerce store, a blog or magazine site, or a portfolio site, and don’t intend to develop a bespoke set of themes, then WordPress is probably your best choice. ExpressionEngine is more than capable of supporting these sorts of sites, but WordPress makes assumptions about content management that make them easier to implement for the average person. You’ll be up and running more quickly, and the learning curve for non-developers is less onerous.
What do you think about the relative strengths of WordPress and ExpressionEngine? Let us know in the comments.
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