Is a Joomla Template Setup Easier than a WordPress One?

Since one month ago, I’ve developed a new passion which is growing bigger everyday: I like Joomla!, the free CMS system that seems to be driving a lot of high-traffic authority websites such as Linux.com. I still have most of my websites running on WordPress, but the next web properties I’m going to develop are going to be Joomla-based.

Actually, there’s no difference between WordPress and Joomla from the visitor’s point of view. It’s just the administrative stuff is different. Otherwise, I’m pretty sure that both CMS solutions are exposed to attacks, just like every other free script that any hacker can download, reverse-engineer, then use that knowledge to insert malicious code in nice people’s websites. Likewise, both systems can allow the building of a highly successful web property, because both of them are flexible and backed-up by teams of good developers. This is the reasoning behind my choice of switching to Joomla:

  • Joomla has built-in components that make handling communities much easier than WordPress. It’s true that bbPress can be a good solution for developing a community of members on a website, but bbPress needs special attention in order to have it integrated in the overall look of an already established website. Joomla just takes new modules and dress them in the same layout, without the need of too much coding.
  • Joomla templates have a very stylish look and there are many of them which look fabulous even in their free version. WordPress themes, on the other hand, are also beautiful, but it’s hard to find really good looking ones if you’re not willing to pay.
  • The freelancer developers community seems to be much bigger around Joomla than around WordPress. For instance, the newest component for Joomla, K2, is supported by a dedicated and motivated team, so there’s an extra reason to use it on long-term web properties. I’ve never seen such a community around a WordPress plugin.
  • Last, but also important, is that Joomla has the possibility to clone a site with all its functional features in as little as 10 minutes, so if you intend to build multiple sites, Joomla can help you be more efficient. Just setup your general frame with all add-ons, then have it cloned in almost no time.

Yet, the real challenge is keeping quality up, if you’re handling too many sites at once, be it you make them with WordPress, Joomla or the good old html tables.

27 Comments

  1. In the administrator menu, go to Extensions -> Install/Uninstall. Then browse and choose the zip file containing the template and load it. You’ll get a success message (hopefully). Then go to Extensions -> Template Manager, choose your new template and make it default (there’s a big button with a yellow star in the upper right of the screen).

  2. You’re welcome, Alan. Joomla is really easy after you learn the ropes. There are some nice video tutorials at JoomlaBear.com, you may want to watch them. They are free and really useful.

  3. Thanks for your post and also showing how to install joomla.Compare to blogsopt and WP ,Joomla is easy and looks good.

    Looking forward more from you ,
    Thanks again .

  4. [I’ve never seen such a community around a WordPress plugin] Wow, there are thousands and thousands of WordPress plugins that actually are supported by their developers. And WordPress MU makes it easy to clone new blog offspring. But if you can get someone to help with joomla there is probably better BB integration…

  5. Hunter Stone, thank you for your comment. If I’ve never seen something, that doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist (I’m still young, lots of things yet to be seen… 😉 ). Actually both Joomla and WordPress have their pluses and minuses, so it’s probably better to take a look into both before deciding what to go for. I did so, and my choice for developing an online community with member profiles, discussion boards, blogs and other things like these would be Joomla. On the other hand, for simple informative websites, WordPress could be better, especially if you’ve already been using it for a while.

  6. I have read the article based on the Joomla language which is really very easier as compared to word press.Joomla is totally open source system and has low maintenance as it is coding is very easy.

  7. In Joomla, if you choose template close to what you want, colors, logo etc.. is not that complicated but if you do not want to get involved with CSS, and you would like to re-arrange navigation elements as well, you might consider hiring a web developer. while in WordPress has a logical structure, it is easy to change things around, place ad banners, navigation elements etc.

  8. Hello, Great work as always.I just installed a new template for Joomla, and I can´t find a way to tell me which placements (top, bottom, left, banner, user1, etc.) are available for this template. I want to maximize my space and I can´t do that without knowing what is available.

  9. This is how to see what placements are available for the template you’ve chosen: in the Joomla administrator menu go to Extensions -> Template Manager, then click on the name of your template. You’ll then see a menu in the upper right part of the screen. Click on Preview and you’ll be able to see the template map with all placement positions on it.

  10. @ Web Development Company – indeed, WordPress seems to be more intuitive and logical than Joomla, but once you know how to modify the CSS file, you’ll be able to do it in any of the systems, because differences are minor. Changing things around can be tricky also in WordPress, so you’d probably have to learn some CSS and php if you want to control how your site looks like.

  11. I have been completely satisfied with Joomla. I have noticed there is a very larger and helpful WordPress community and it seems as if they are building momentum with the number of plugins. There are a few WordPress plug-ins that I would love to see developed for Joomla, CommentLuv being the first to come to mind.
    The K2 theme looks great.Do you know if there are other color options?

  12. Hi Aaron, your Joomla-based site looks great, I liked it very much. Indeed, there’s an active WordPress community, lots of plugin choices and lots of free templates which make it a flexible and easy to use CMS. Nonetheless, Joomla also benefits from a helpful community of developers. I think the K2 team will help things move a lot faster than they used to, in terms of new features (like the CommentLuv you’re missing).

    I’m new to K2, but as far as I’ve noticed, it comes with a CSS file, which one can tweak to change colors and other layout elements.

  13. Might be its personal taste too, but after running my psexam.com for two years in Joomla, I am starting another site not in Joomla. Its not because Joomla is not good but I found wodpress much better for SEO. Don’t you think so?

  14. I think that SEO is not necessarily related to the CMS used. You can setup page titles and other parameters to be like you want in both systems, so it’s more a matter of personal knowledge. However, WordPress makes it easier because one needs to know less things in order to be able to do a good on-page SEO.

  15. Funny story, I actually started building sites with Joomla because of the functionality, but now I am using WordPress for the simplicity. Plus there are more free wordpress plugins than Joomla plugins and less compatibilty issues.

    Meaning everytime Joomla makes a major change many plugins no longer work, and you are left with an unsupported CMS unless the develper updates their plugins.

    I guess it all depends, but for mini sites and more basic sites WordPress rocks, but if you are buidling a more complicated site, say an ecommerce site, Joomla definately has its advantages.

    Both are great to me.

  16. I agree with @Artisteer fan, you will be best to use Joomla if you have some knowledge about development in case of outage plugin. I am using K2 on my new site and love it. I will give more love once they release commentluv plugin or mod. 😉

  17. Joomla sound really interesting however is it as seo friendly as word press? We all know currently google love word press. How does Joolma rank for you easier hard or the same as work press?
    Thanks From Jay at
    Murphy Bed Plans

  18. Your very positive review of Joomla makes me curious to learn more about the it. Hope Joomla can help me so much with my new passion, BLOGGING.

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