The number of websites launching each year is growing and the numbers are staggering. A recent Daily Mail study showed that 70 new domains and 571 websites are launched every minute. Another survey showed that in early 2016 alone, about 866 million websites were launched. This is because when it comes to fulfilling a need or getting a solution, everyone turns to the Internet.
While many businesses choose to hire a web designer to create their websites, they don’t consider the many options they can use to set up a decent website on their own. This can be quite cheap for small and medium businesses and professional freelancers as well.
The most popular way to set up websites is to use content management systems (CMS). CMS software allows you to set up your website without having to compromise a single pixel or line of code. If you have the time and energy, CMS is the perfect option for you.
Globally, the most popular CMS providers are WordPress, Joomla and Drupal.
Launched by Matt Mullenwegg in 2003, WordPress has become the most popular CMS provider in the world and is widely used by small and medium-sized businesses as well as large corporations including Forbes, Sony, and CNN. Over 12 million websites are powered by WordPress and the software has had over 140 million downloads.
“WordPress is web software that you can use to create a beautiful website, blog, or app. We like to say that WordPress is free and priceless at the same time.”
WordPress is open source software and is free to download. It is extremely customizable with over 2,000 themes and over 27,000 plugins. Installation is easy and takes no more than ten minutes for the average user. It is also quite easy to use: users with limited computer skills can use the software without problems. All of these features combined to make WordPress one of the most popular content management systems in the world.
Joomla was first released in 2005 as a fork of Mambo, an open source CMS development project. Like WordPress, Joomla is written in PHP. It is the preferred CMS for eCommerce and social media sites. In 2016, more than 2 million websites are powered by Joomla.
“Joomla is an award-winning content management system (CMS) that enables you to create powerful websites and online applications. Many aspects, including its ease of use and extensibility, have made Joomla the most popular website software available” .
Like its father, Joomla is open source and free to download. It has been downloaded over 30 million times, second only to WordPress, and is used by companies like The Hill and Harvard University.
Joomla has over 900 free themes and over 7,000 plugins to choose from. Similar to WordPress, Joomla can be installed with a single click and the installation procedure will take no more than 10 minutes. However, it is not as easy to use as WordPress and requires a bit of technical knowledge to operate.
Launched in 2001 by Dries Buytaert, Drupal is less popular than WordPress and Joomla. Like its competitors, Drupal is also written in PHP. Drupal CMS follows the “one size fits all” principle and can be used by all types of businesses, whatever their requirements. More than 600,000 websites in 2016 are managed with Drupal.
“Drupal is an open source content management platform that powers millions of websites and applications. It is built, used and supported by an active and diverse community of people around the world.”
Like its competitors, Drupal is free to download. It has been downloaded over 15 million times and is used by Linux, The White House and The Warner Brothers for their websites. There are over 1,800 themes to choose from, as well as over 24,000 plugins. Although Drupal is easy to use, it is more difficult to install and customize compared to WordPress.
Depending on your requirements, any of these content management systems will serve their purpose: to power a decent website that communicates with your audience.