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wordpress vs django

Web development tools (WordPress vs Django)

WordPress is a free content management system that many companies and bloggers use. Whereas Django is a web framework that many developers use to power their websites and building websites from scratch. Choosing between the two depends mainly on your needs and your team’s expertise. WordPress vs Django is a topic and a dilemma many developers face when they want to develop their website.

Choosing the right tool is the first thing any developer thinks of before embarking on any design or development of a web project. Is there a right content management system that can help the most in my project?.

Once you start using a certain tool, WordPress for example, it’ll be hard and costly to switch and start using another content management system. Therefore deciding which web design tool to use before you actually start working is the first thing. Be sure if a certain software meets your needs and your team’s competence.

WordPress vs Django, Which one to use

The best to choose between two tools is to know how each function. Before we answering and advising on the best choice, let’s first get to know the Django web framework and WordPress.

WordPress Content Management System

WordPress is a content management system. It comes with a very easy to use dashboard where you can manage your content. Media, blog posts, and comments. It gives you everything you need to create any type of website. I wrote a tutorial that you can follow and appreciate the features and how easy WordPress is. The WordPress system is made up of themes and plugins. Also, learn how to create a blog with WordPress.

WordPress History

Before WordPress, b2/cafelog was developed by  Michel Valdrighi. Cafelog was installed in nearly 200 blogs or websites by May 2003, which was just phenomenal for a new software. Michel developed Cafelog using PHP and MySQL database. Michel Valdrighi is now a contributing developer on WordPress.

Then, WordPress was first published in 2003 and was developed by Matthew Mullenweg and Mike Little. WordPress was a fork of b2/cafelog and they improved it and changed a few designs.

In 2009, WordPress had the biggest brand in open source CMS circles. And by 2019, WordPress is used by 60.8% of all the websites that use a content management system.

WordPress features

Multi-user and Multi-site

WordPress allows a single site installation by default. But, you can install multiple copies running in different directories. And you need to have 2 configured databases for each installation. WordPress multi-site also allows a user to administer more than one blog or website in the same installation.

I love WordPress because it also allows many users to be administer or edit content on the website, i.e a clean and reliable permission system.

Themes

Every WordPress website should have a theme, a highly customizable template that you install in your dashboard, and change the layout to your needs. Many themes are available to choose from. Some are free and others are not. You can also change your theme at any time.

Plugins

You can extend your WordPress website functionality using plugins. There are many plugins for different functions and this makes WordPress highly customizable. Plugins are free and also for sale. If you’re lucky you can find a plugin that actually suits your needs.

Why use WordPress

In case you have chosen to use WordPress to develop your website, here are the reasons why many people choose WordPress over other options.

  • WordPress is free.
  • Takes less time to develop a complete website.
  • Thousands of free and paid themes to choose from.
  • Easy to use and customize.
  • Extensibility through the use of free plugins.
  • A dashboard you can use add and manage your themes, plugins, blog posts
  • WordPress is the best blogging platform you can find.
  • Easy and cheap to deploy a live website to a shared hosting server.
  • WordPress sites are generally fast and are optimized for search engines.
  • Clean permalink structure.
  • Ability to assign multiple categories to posts and also assigning tags.
  • Support for trackback and pingback standards.
  • If you’re technical, posts can be edited in HTML.
  • Multisite – More than one website per installation.
  • A Clean permission system, many levels of user access levels e.g. editor, admin, or subscriber.

Some WordPress alternatives

  • Joomla
  • Wagtail
  • Drupal
  • Plone
  • Laravel
  • Wix
  • Blogger
  • Weebly
  • Tumblr
  • Medium
  • Sitefinity
  • NetlifyCMS
  • Ghost
  • Webflow
  • Magento

Django Web Framework

Django is a web framework built entirely with python. It comes with everything you need to build a website, a dashboard, ORM (Object Relational Mapper) for your database models. Views, Template Engine, Routing, and many other features you can use to develop a website from scratch. I wrote a blog post, how to create a blog with Django web framework. You can follow the tutorial and appreciate some of the features of Django.

Django History

Django web framework was created in 2003, not so different from WordPress. Adrian Holovaty and Simon Willison used python programming language to django. It was later released to the public under a BSD licence in July 2005. They named django framework after Django Reinhardt. Currently, The django software foundation is maintaining django into the future it needs to be.

If you need a content management system for your website, Django has a lot of options you can choose from.

Django Content Management Systems

Why use Django

Some developer chooses Django over WordPress for many reasons. Let’s explore some of those reasons here.

  • Fast. Django was build to help developers make websites very fast, from ideas to production in the shortest possible time. It achieves this through ready-made libraries such as the ORM for database models.
  • Security. Django ensures that the developers don’t make silly security mistakes. Built-in mitigation for SQL injection, password cracking, and cross-site forgery.
  • Scalable. A Django project is made up of small pluggable applications. Each of those applications is easily pluggable to the main project.
  • Versatile. You can develop any kind of website with Django. From e-commerce, social platform, scientific web systems, mobile application backends.
  • Python is easy to learn, the code is clean and easy to read.
  • If you use Django, then all the python libraries will be usable on your website which gives you much power as a developer.
  • The power to build what you exactly want i.e custom developing websites that suits your client’s need.
  • Since python is also widely used in data science and machine learning, using it to develop a website can give you the ability to integrate powerful apps on your website.
  • Django comes with a lightweight and standalone web server you can use during development and testing.
  • Django has a powerful caching framework that allows you to employ any caching method you want.
  • Testing the website apps is also easy by using the python built-in unit test framework.
  • Middleware classes that can help you program core custom function.
  • A Django website can have multiple language support i.e internationalization.
  • A nice and robust REST framework system that uses the Django REST framework.
  • Django has the ability to generate Google sitemaps.
  • You can generate RSS feeds on your website.
  • GIS support for mapping applications.

Some Django alternatives

  • Flask
  • Nodejs
  • Web2Py
  • ExpressJS
  • Spring
  • ASP.NET
  • Laravel
  • Rails
  • Pyramid

Now let’s discuss when you should choose either WordPress or Django content management systems.

When to use WordPress

When you are new to web development, WordPress is a good choice because it’ll introduce you to the game. However, if when you know HTML, CSS and other web designing tools and languages, WordPress is best when you want to develop:

Types of websites you can build with Django

  • Company website
  • Blog
  • Personal Website
  • Portfolio
  • Small e-commerce site

Project features

  • Flexible and Adaptable for Changing Requirements
  • User-Friendly
  • Common use cases and no complicated features.

You can also choose WordPress when your team of developers has no deep knowledge of web development from scratch. It’s also good when you want to minimize costs because WordPress is free and easy to deploy to shared hosting.

When to use Django

If your project has features you cannot easily find on the internet, or no WordPress theme offers the same functionalities that you want on your project, then it’s best to choose Django.

Project features to use Django

  • Rapid prototyping
  • Highly customizable features
  • Scalable architecture.
  • High security
  • Unique validation of data
  • Custom user permissions

Types of websites you can build with Django

  • E-commerce
  • Directories
  • Scientific web systems
  • Banking systems

Finally let’s do a quick python and PHP comparison.

PHP and Python Comparison

Python is an interpreted, high-level, functional, imperative, object-oriented, and reflective programming language. an interpreted language allows execution of code directly, without compiling into machine languages. The program written in python is translated into a series of subroutines by the interpreter. The opposite of interpreted language is compiled language.

Application of Python

  • Web and internet development – Django, Flask, Pyramid, and Bottle.
  • Scientific and Numeric Analysis – Pandas, for data analytics, SciPy for mathematics, science, and engineering, iPython, an interactive shell that has easy editing of a work session and parallel computing.
  • Graphical User Interfaces
  • Business Applications such as Odoo, and Tryton.

PHP is a functional, imperative, object-oriented, and procedural scripting language developed mostly for web development. It is also an interpreted language just like python. Every PHP code is processed on a web server e.g. Apache by the PHP interpreter, which can be implemented either as a daemon, module, or Common Gateway Interface.

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