In this tutorial, you will learn about the main differences between Umbraco CMS and WordPress. If you want to start a new website, it can be very difficult and often a very daunting task to pick which CMS will power it. By the end of this guide, you will know if Umbraco or WordPress is the correct option for you. If you are currently trying to pick between these two options, this is the tutorial for you 🔥 🔥
Umbraco Vs WordPress?
Umbraco is a content management solution (CMS) built using the Microsoft stack of technologies. WordPress is a PHP-based blogging platform. Both programs are open source and free to use for personal, or commercial use.
WordPress is a great choice for powering a blog. If blogging is the main focus of your website, WordPress is probably the strongest candidate. WordPress has been written primarily to support blogs. WordPress is the most used blogging platform in the world today, so it is a good pick.
On the other hand, if you want to create a complex website, with a deeply nested page navigation structure, then Umbraco, in my opinion, is the clear leader.
If you sampled the technology stack of the top enterprise-level organizations, a large majority will use a Microsoft backed stack. Umbraco is the leading Microsoft based open-source CMS platform. So I'm hoping you can see why in certain situations, Umbraco is a good option 😊
From my experience, when you build a website with over 10 web pages, WordPress does not work very well. It is hard to navigate and find pages as they are ordered in a list, not a tree.
If you want to create a more bespoke website, with a custom design, Umbraco is probably the better choice. Like anything you have custom made, having that white-glove approach, will mean it will cost you more money. A powerful feature with Umbraco is the power to customize a lot of it within the CMS, without having to do any coding, downloading a new theme or plug-in.
Pricing: Both programs are open-source and free to use. WordPress can be slightly cheaper, due to hosting costs. PHP hosting tends to be cheaper than Microsoft hosting but the difference is tiny. With Umbraco, you have supported hosting providers like, www.arvixe.com, which provides hosting for as little as $5 dollars a month. As the difference in basic hosting is only between £1 and £3, I don't think hosting costs is really a deal-breaker one way or the other!
Tech Stack: If you are reading this article, there's a good chance you are not a developer. Most developers will tend to favour a website platform that matches their abilities. If you are creating a website from scratch and need to hire people, WordPress or Umbraco developers will roughly cost the same amount to hire. WordPress developers will be slightly cheaper. The big difference in costs is the length of time you need to hire them. As Umbraco is a more white-glove approach, expect to need to hire a Umbraco developer for a little longer.
Reusable Components: WordPress and Umbraco both come with themes and modules you can install to speed up development. WordPress definitely has the edge in the amount of plug-in's and themes that are available. With WordPress, there are over 10,000 free and premium themes and 30,000+ plugins to enhance the core functionality of your site.
Having this range is great, however, you also need to think about quality. From my own personal experience with WordPress, it's usually these free plug-in and themes which are the root cause of some of my websites being exploited by hackers. The Umbraco community does provide a limited number of modules, however, nowhere near as many compared to WordPress. The difference might be less but because Umbraco is powered by Microsoft, in general, the Umbraco plugins are a lot more secure.
Ease Of Use: Which platform is easier to use, will depend on the purpose of your website. If you have a website with lots of pages, not having a content tree within WordPress is annoying. As Umbraco organizes pages in an easy to use page navigation structure, it's really simple to navigate. Both products back-end admin editing screens are pretty simple and easy to get to grips with. If you have a blog, then the tagging within WordPress is much better.
Security: Security should be a key factor in any online CMS and this is where Umbraco clearly wins. As WordPress is so widely used and so many 'FREE' plug-ins and themes exist, it is very common for WordPress sites to be hacked. I have built over 50 WordPress sites and over half of them were hacked at some point. This happens because of WordPress popularity. As WordPress is so widely used, there are lots of tools that exist that try to find WordPress sites and brute force their way in. Most of the sites I have built were attacked via a vulnerability within a plugin. This issue with hacking is why I stopped using WordPress.
If you work with sensitive data, or, you simply do not want to worry about your website being hacked, Umbraco is the easy winner.
Support comparison: Both have great support. Umbraco provides 150+ in-depth video tutorials all for FREE to help you get started with the CMS. Umbraco also has a brilliant community forum that will get you the answers you need.
WordPress has a bigger community and there are lots of websites and resources for it.
Testing: If you care about releasing your website bug-free, you will want to unit test your work. This is where PHP and WordPress fall down. Microsoft's programming language uses something called a strongly typed programming model. This means developers can create things called unit tests to ensure ongoing maintenance work doesn't break your site. If you are selling e-commerce products for example, if you update a custom plug-in developed for you, there is no guarantee that it will not break your website will break. With Umbraco, you can write tests against work to make sure it all works.
Scaling: If you build a website that gains a lot of popularity and you need to quickly upgrade your servers to deal with bigger capacity, then the Microsoft stack wins. One of the reasons big companies pay extra expense is because they know reputation is one of the most important things that affect a business. If you host your website within a cloud hosting provider, you can click a button and instantly scale your hosting. There is a cost involved in doing this, however, on a Black Friday, this ability to scale your websites hardware quickly can save you lots of money!
WordPress Vs Umbraco Compared
WordPress and Umbraco are very different animals 🐈🐜 🐤 🐡 🐊🐸. I've been building websites for over a decade using a variety of CMS products. I've built sites in Umbraco and WordPress and they both do different things and are suited to different tasks.
WordPress is a great fit for small/medium level websites. If you want to start dealing with 100,000 customers, load balancers and cloud hosting then Umbraco wins hands down. The WordPress sites I have built have tended to be for smaller freelance clients who wanted a blog or a brochureware site 😕f you want to build a blog then I don't think anyone can say WordPress has more popularity and themes/plug-ins available.
In my day job, I work with large corporations. These companies tend to like using a CMS like Umbraco as they have more complex website needs. If you want to build a website, Umbraco is probably a better choice. At the smaller scale of the website spectrum, the differences between the two platforms are much smaller. When the complexity of the website starts to scale, you can't really use the open-source free WordPress plug-ins and themes, so you lose the benefit of the WordPress community.
Another issue I've encountered with WordPress is growing pains. WordPress can be great to start off with, however, it can be outgrown when the site gets more complex. In these instances, a lot of companies spend a huge amount of money rebuilding their websites. If they had used Umbraco in the first place this massive re-build spend wouldn't have been needed. WordPress can start off cheap, however, if you have to pay to build the same site again, your cost will double! Often the cheaper path is to use the platform that will allow you to grow.
IMHO Umbraco is the best choice in terms of predicting the future. All you need to pay for is hosting, which costs as little as $3.95 a month. Your website will take a little longer to build and you may need slightly more developer support, however, it will be built to grow!
A new Umbraco site can be built in under 5 minutes. See for yourself, follow the steps within this tutorial to get started 💥
You now know the main differences between WordPress and Umbraco. The two platforms have been built for different purposes. WordPress is great to start a small simple blog. I would pick Umbraco for a website project that can grow over time. Happy Coding 🤘