There are several modular content management systems (CMS) with a strong foundation and vibrant community than WordPress. Another open-source platform that is free to install is Joomla, which depends heavily on outside assistance. Many programmers want to increase their capabilities past what is included in the standard software. There are several functional differences between WordPress and Joomla, as well as differences in user experience and technical requirements.

In order to help you choose which one will work best for you, we’ll compare WordPress and Joomla in this post.

WordPress vs. Joomla: Who Are They For?

WordPress tries its hardest to be a CMS that can handle any task. In other words, WordPress enables anyone who needs a website to create one. Additionally, typically with little experience. Although it may not be the most cutting-edge website available, thanks to a variety of third-party plugins and themes, the tools are easily accessible and understanding by anyone.

WordPress has a little learning curve for users, but getting beyond it doesn’t take very long. You’ll rapidly become an expert user of posts, pages, themes, plugins, and widgets. Users who have never had a website before can feel rather secure in their ability to easily build a nice-enough WordPress site.

A CMS that can be everything to everyone is Joomla. Its development history differs greatly from that of WordPress, particularly because it was designed from the start to be a full-site CMS. Features and updates for WordPress are still based on its roots as blogging software. Both are based on PHP, but Joomla has a far more conventional foundation for users (especially developers) because it can be used out of the box with basic HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and PHP without needing to learn the “WordPress way” of doing things.

Having said that, Joomla seems like a CMS that novices would like using. The language and messaging for new users (within Joomla itself) are lacking, and the backend interface is awkward. WordPress is significantly less technical than installing modules and getting things to work. However, Joomla offers a lot of freedom for users that have familiarity with technology and websites.

WordPress vs. Joomla: Ease-of-Use

WordPress is mostly used for blogging, despite having a moderate learning curve for novice users. This implies that almost all features may be reduced to some kind of producing a post or page. Simply said, themes and plugins increase that functionality. Since Joomla has traditionally been a content management system (CMS) geared toward site developers, new (non-technical) users would have a steeper learning curve. If you have experience with classical computer science and web programming, Joomla might be easier to learn than WordPress.


WordPress is easy to use. The admin dashboard is straightforward in most ways, highlighting the main areas of focus (Pages, Posts, Media, and so on) in the left-hand sidebar.

wordpress vs joomla

You do have to learn where certain elements are, such as various settings, tools, and menu editing. But in general, once you learn where those are and how to access them, the interface is relatively intuitive.

One of the more difficult aspects of using WordPress is making sure that you have the right suite of plugins to complement your theme. There are thousands of free themes and plugins in the repositories and even more premium options, such as Divi, available from third-party developers.

Making the right choices—and even knowing which choices are necessary—can take a little figuring out. If you’re just getting a feel for WordPress, you might not know what features your site needs and which plugins and themes can provide those. All of that becomes much clearer and simpler once you’ve spent just a little time using the platform and doing some outside research.

For typical users, most WordPress features can be carried out with just a few clicks. Since the base of the platform is based around posts and pages, the basic workflow becomes familiar very quickly, with only a few variations depending on the task.


We’d like to say that Joomla has the kind of quick-to-learn workflow that WordPress offers. But that’s just not the case. At least for many users. If you’re an average web user who is looking to set up a new website, Joomla might not make a whole lot of sense at first. (And for a good while after that.) If you’ve built and/or coded websites before, Joomla shouldn’t be that hard to pick up.

The backend, though, is not intuitively put together. Joomla’s admin panel does have a quick-menu sidebar to the left, like WordPress. But most of the features and utilities live on the top menu, and you access those via dropdown.

joomla admin

Additionally, on installation, you will be asked if you would like to import blog sample data. We recommend that you do. That’s where you will find most of the new-user orientation material set up as content on your new site.

joomla content

Having any new-user content being an optional import as sample data is just weird. It is not an intuitive way to introduce someone to the Joomla platform. At all. However, the Joomla community has some fantastic training content with which you can learn Joomla.

With the time we’ve spent learning and exploring Joomla, it never really became smooth and second nature to perform any tasks. The menus in Joomla do make sense (unlike WordPress), but navigating through them is frustrating. You can’t click a new menu item until you’ve closed the current one.

All-in-all, Joomla’s not that easy to use. It is developer-friendly, for sure, but not end-user friendly at all.

WordPress vs. Joomla: Customization

WordPress is a customisation powerhouse. The number of design and feature options is virtually limitless thanks to extensibility via plugins and themes. Without much trouble, even a user with no prior technical knowledge can launch a WordPress website that appears more or less professional. The foundation of Joomla is customization. however, not for the consumer. Without a lot of technical know-how or design experience, you can find it difficult to understand Joomla’s customization possibilities if you’re a content provider or site owner.


Through plugins and themes, WordPress can be whatever you need it to be. You can add e-commerce features with a few clicks. You can install a new page-builder tool for more advanced options over the Gutenberg editor. And each theme you install comes with its own unique set of customization options. Most of the time, these are consolidated into the built-in Theme Customizer.

wordpress customize

Users with more advanced skills can add CSS through this page, or they can delve into the core WordPress files and edit the PHP directly. The file structure is designed so that any customizations are held separately in a child theme so that the base you’re customizing is always there to go back to.

In that way (and many others), WordPress encourages poking and prodding and seeing what is the best fit for your site. Try on different themes, widgets, and plugins to add features and design to see what works and what doesn’t. Resetting things back to as they were only taking a few clicks, regardless.


Joomla is also an incredibly customizable platform. It, too, has hundreds of templates and themes, and extensions to install to customize your site. You can download them from the official Joomla repo that is directly accessible from the dashboard. Both design and functionality add-ons can be found in the same place, separated by category.

joomla customization

Installing them doesn’t take more than a few clicks. You can then navigate back to the admin dashboard to enable and adjust their settings.

And while you do have every bit as much freedom as you do in WordPress, the Joomla options and customizations are generally less user-friendly and more complicated to get right. Placing them on the site often has you choosing a “position” number that has no human-readable name. With that and because of how the content on the site is displayed, it takes some real time to get things displayed where you want. Not to mention actually testing and implementing features and utilities.

Joomla has a ton of power under the hood, and you can customize it however you want. But you will definitely work for it using Joomla vs. WordPress.

WordPress vs. Joomla: Publishing

Content is king on the internet. Additionally, your website is where you present your material. Therefore, we must discuss how creating and publishing content with WordPress vs. Joomla will affect you.

WordPress’ primary use is as a blogging platform. It is designed from the start to win this head-to-head. It is easy to use and clear. Anyone can upload a static page and publish to their site’s feed without difficulty. On the other hand, Joomla wasn’t designed just to publish routine content. And it manifests. On your Joomla site, the Articles header has links to each page, post, and note. The publication procedure is enough complicated by this that it isn’t enjoyable.


WordPress 5.0 introduced the block editor. Replacing the classic WYSIWYG editor, content creators can now control options and settings for every paragraph (even sentence if they so choose), image, gallery, or embed on the site. While the block editor is not everyone in the WordPress community’s favorite new feature, the interface is slick, simple, and new and old users tend to like using it to create content. Both in terms of blog posts and static pages.

wordpress editor

With various post types delineated in function and separated within the interface, it’s easy to understand what you’re creating and how to use it. Posts are for regular content. Pages are for static content that won’t enter the feed. You can use Custom Post Types to add features like Products to plugins like WooCommerce.

The entire process is simple and understandable within WordPress itself. The Add New button under Posts brings you to the editor, in which the placeholder text explains what to do, and a big, blue Publish button sits up top. In that same window, you have the option to adjust that content’s permalink and meta information.


In Joomla, creating content is technically as easy as it is in WordPress. The publishing editor Joomla uses is TinyMCE, which is the same editor that WordPress used until version 5.0. So anyone with familiarity there (or with other WYSIWYG editors) will feel right at home.

Joomla editor

Like WordPress, you can edit your permalink here (called an Alias in Joomla), tags for your article, whether the article shows up as featured on your site, and various other permissions and options such as access levels and meta-data display.

One of the more confusing and confounding parts of the Joomla publishing process is that you press the same button (Add New Article) in the header menu to be taken to this same editor to create both regularly updated blog content (such as Posts in WordPress) and static pages (Pages in WP). The Category feature in Joomla is what keeps these separate.

Depending on the modules and extensions your site has installed (which we mentioned in the Customization section above), the category you choose dictates where this content appears.  And they’re all created and managed from this single tool. This is incredibly powerful. And it’s actually pretty simple. But it’s a headache to use in practice, as setting up a site with the right categories to match all the content to match all the modules is not as simple as, for instance, WordPress taxonomies.

For sites that aren’t publishing regular content (or using a different platform for that), Joomla’s publishing tools may be just what you need to keep things organized.

We believe that the choice between WordPress and Joomla ultimately depends on the end user’s tech background and the type of website they require. WordPress is by far the victor of this head-to-head for brand-new website owners without any prior website experience. It accomplishes everything and has a considerably less learning curve. Also outstanding are the ecosystem and third-party support. Everyone may explore WordPress and find their niche, from novice users to seasoned professionals.

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