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Why Umbraco Wins the CMS Battle

I grew up with a father who was always teaching me life lessons. I call them “Daddio-isms,” and I find they come up all the time. Professionally, the Daddio-ism I use most is, “Always use the right tool for the right job.”

At The Garrigan Lyman Group (GLG), we take a similar approach when choosing the content management system (CMS) for a website. Every tool has pros and cons, depending on the job we want it to do. Here’s why we choose Umbraco most of the time, and also why you might choose Sitecore or WordPress.

When choosing a CMS, we look to see if there is a long list functionality requests.  If so, we might choose Sitecore. The Sitecore CMS is robust in terms of e-commerce integration, personalization, authoring workflows, permissions, and scalability. However, Sitecore also comes with a hefty licensing fee of about $40,000, plus additional licensing fees for each year you use it. For many companies, budget is one of the biggest concerns, and Sitecore is not a budget-friendly CMS.

Like Sitecore, Umbraco comes with a number of features, including Umbraco Cloud services, but it is FREE—sites have zero licensing fees. Umbraco does offer annual support packages and a few paid add-ons, but those features require inexpensive one-time payments.

Another question to ask yourself when choosing a CMS is how quickly you need your website. Are you looking to get something simple up fast? If so, WordPress might be your tool. WordPress is an open-source platform, and the community has done a great job at providing thousands of plug-ins for websites. However, for a site that you need to use beyond simple blogging, you’ll need to install a lot of different plug-ins. Unfortunately, many of those plug-ins will have far more features than you need—or will no longer be maintained. For more complex projects, WordPress plug-ins become a nightmare to manage.

So this is when we might consider Umbraco. Like WordPress, Umbraco is simple to set up and is an open-source platform. However, it is far more customizable. In my experience, the WordPress community’s mentality is “there’s a plug-in for that,” while the Umbraco community’s mentality is “let’s create a custom solution.” At first, it might sound like creating a custom solution takes longer than just using WordPress plug-ins, but for complex projects, it’s actually much faster to build exactly what you need. And unlike WordPress being built on PHP, Umbraco is built on Microsoft’s .NET platform, which comes with built-in state-of-the-art security. While the myriad of plug-ins you must install in WordPress can leave your site vulnerable (not to mention slower to load), your sites in Umbraco are much more secure.

Now there’s a lot of chatter on the web that Umbraco is better suited to small or midsize companies; however, large enterprises such as Carlsberg, T-Mobile, and the Reckitt Benckiser umbrella (with brands like Lysol and Mucinex) are all now on Umbraco. Umbraco is a great tool for ANY company that wants secure, customized solutions while also being financially smart

For more information on which tool is right for your job, especially if you think it might be Umbraco, get in touch with us at GLG.

Follow me on Twitter: @BrittanyDufort