When it comes to launching a web site, a Content Management System (CMS) system needs to be established. Separating content from design is state of the are for many years. There are probably hundreds of free CMS one could choose. Joomla is one of them and the complexity is between WordPress and Drupal.
WordPress is primarily a easy blogging platform, very easy to manage and support. It can do quite very much things, but these has to be done with plugins. Drupal on the other hand has web 2.0 functions build in like forums and surveys. It was created to establish community sites.
Joomla has been downloaded 80 million times (by the end of 2016) and roughly 1% of the websites use joomla as CMS. It was a fork of another CMS, Mambo in 2005. Every year one or two minor versions (Major.Minor, e.g. 3.1, 3.2, …) are released. Each major version is supported for four years. Updating and patching of Joomla is very important to maintain security and keep hackers away from your site.
All these CMS are open source, but what are the advantages of Joomla?
- Easy to install
- Thousands of free plugins and components
- Easy menu creation
- Community support
- LAMP infrastructure
- Build in caching
- Access Control Lists (ACL)
- Well for small business website
- Lots of extensions like blogging, calender, newsletters, gallieries, forums and so on
And what about the disadvantages?
- Limited customization, Joomla has less templates and modules than e.g. WordPress.
- It uses more Resources then other CMS. Therefore it is said that 50,000 users per day are the maximum which can be handled.
- It is said that Joomla out of the box is not very well adaptable to SEO, but there are plugins available.
- Higher complexity. If user come from WordPress they are often surprised about the level of complexity. It needs a while to handle the day to day work.
If you are unsure if Joomla fits your need, you can try it with a 90 days demo account from http://demo.joomla.org. On this page several further links to extensions, to news about joomla, to the community and support can be found. There are easy video tutorials available.