Why I Don’t Use Wordpress
It’s practically a household name, the Kleenex of the website management world. It is said to be used on 1/4 of all the websites on the internet.
So, why don’t I use Wordpress? Well, I did, at least a little bit, years ago. At that time I found other options that I thought were better for the kinds of sites I typically build, and I never looked back.
Why you might want to use Wordpress
Sometimes Wordpress really is the best choice, such as:
- Your site IS a blog.
- You’re a neophyte DIYer, don't want to use a hosted CMS like Squarespace, and feel more secure with Wordpress’s enormous user community and plethora of online tutorials/resources.
- You know of a particular well-maintained plug-in that you need (and can’t replicate the functionality yourself).
- You already “know” Wordpress and are happy enough with it, or changing systems is just too overwhelming right now.
Why I don’t use Wordpress
- Ubiquity does not equate to appropriateness.
- Wordpress was designed to be a blogging engine. I don’t often build sites that ARE blogs.
- I think there are other CMSs that are easier for the site owner/editor to use.
- Perhaps due to its popularity, Wordpress is a common target for hackers.
- Security updates are frequently released and must be implemented for safety reasons.
- There is little incentive for plug-in authors to support and improve their products, so they sometimes don’t work across Wordpress updates (whether abandoned or just slow-to-update).
- Non-maintained and/or sloppily built plug-ins can also be a security risk.
What do I use instead?
I know there are lots of people out there who swear by Wordpress. It’s their CMS hammer of choice to hit all the website nails. I recognize I have my own hammer, too (a couple of them, actually).
Yet I’ve transitioned different people from Wordpress to a new CMS and they’ve all expressed how much better they like the new system.
This leads me to believe I’m helping them make a smart choice based on their needs and wants.
It may be that for your project Wordpress really is the right choice. Just make sure you’re making that choice with eyes wide open.
May you find the system (and developer) that works best for you!
And now, some responses to common points of contention. This is just how I see it and I admit that some of this is conjecture and opinion.
“Wordpress developers are easier to find”
Yes, but are really good Wordpress developers easier to find? I doubt it. Wordpress is free and offers lots of crutches for unseasoned professionals, moonlighters, DIYers, and hobbyists, which is part of why it is so widely adopted. The systems I prefer require paid licenses, may have no themes/templates available, and offer much smaller plugin libraries. The developers that use these systems generally know what they’re doing and are invested. There are far less of them but the quality percentage is likely much higher.
“The Wordpress plug-in ecosystem is vast”
Yes, but will that (probably free) plug-in you’re using be maintained over time? Will it break your site from incompatibility when you upgrade the base Wordpress code with the latest (frequent) security patch?
“Wordpress is not just a blogging engine anymore”
Yes, but that requires plug-ins and years of code bloat to accomplish things that other more recent systems were conceived from the ground-up to do. Things like custom fields and mix-and-match content types. Content management has evolved and newer systems use fresh approaches.
“Why do you even have this page?”
Just because I get asked if I use Wordpress and having this available saves me some time.