Craft CMS offers a flexible, out-of-the-box, open-source solution – it’s great for content-heavy websites. Whilst WordPress is probably the most well-known CMS in the world, Craft has quickly become pretty popular.
Whilst many agencies and developers have made the move to offer Craft CMS website development exclusively, we prefer to make our choice based on the client’s requirements.
In doing so, we regularly weigh up the pros and cons of WordPress vs Craft CMS for these client projects. To help you do the same, we shared an insight into what we consider when reviewing both in this earlier blog.
However, just as we did with WordPress and Shopify we wanted to share our honest thoughts on some of the disadvantages of using Craft CMS.
Some of our clients, like Potton, have huge amounts of content on their websites and we have found Craft CMS to be a great solution, whereas others prefer to stick to what they know, for example, WordPress or Shopify.
Either way, it’s good to know the pros and cons of each, so today we’ll be exploring the disadvantages of Craft CMS…
Disadvantages of using Craft CMS: The costs
Technically you can start using Craft CMS for free if you’re just one person wanting it for personal use, however for business use and access to the functionality you actually need you’ll have to pay a licence fee of $299.
For further functionality, including Craft Commerce, you have to pay additional licence fees which can go up to $999.
These prices are the starting point for your website. Add plugin costs, design and developer time, and things start to increase.
Disadvantages of using Craft CMS: Harder to get started
Unlike other CMS or web-build sites, Craft CMS doesn’t give users a theme to start with, you build your website from scratch. For example, we have built our own ‘theme’ on WordPress so that whenever we start a new project, all the key elements we know we need are ready to go. It offers a skeleton to start the build with.
Working with Craft CMS it’s much harder to use if you don’t have any development experience. However, as a dev, it’s much easier to get started as Craft offers many features and functionality out of the box.
In the case of using Craft CMS for business, it’s definitely a great choice, however, if you’re looking to create your own site, without any development experience we don’t recommend it.
Disadvantages of using Craft CMS: A smaller community
One of the disadvantages of using Craft CMS is that in general there are a lot fewer developers out there, which means your choice is more limited when it comes to choosing who you want to work with.
Whether that’s agencies or freelancers, there are just fewer people around who specialise in this platform.
That also means that the community surrounding Craft CMS is much smaller. Whilst this is unlikely to affect you directly, it can sometimes mean developers working on complex Craft projects might have to problem-solve some elements from scratch as there aren’t as many solutions available.
Saying that when you pay for the use of Craft you get access to their support, help and service which usually can solve any issues that come up along the way.
Disadvantages of using Craft CMS: Selling it into the business
As we’ve mentioned, quite a LOT in this blog and others, WordPress is a very popular platform. That means many people outside of the web design/marketing/digital industry have heard of it and are more likely to be on board with using it, without much persuasion.
On the flip side, a disadvantage of using Craft CMS is that it probably needs to be sold into the business.
Helping the rest of your team understand the benefits of using Craft can be a challenge all by itself. Luckily we’ve found a handy guide for you from the team at Abstrakt.
Craft CMS isn’t for everyone and that’s ok!
As we mentioned many agencies have switched to offering ONLY Craft CMS websites, claiming it is better than other options out there on the market.
For some projects, Craft is superb and we totally agree, however, we truly believe in choosing the right platform for the project, and as with everything there are disadvantages to Craft CMS.
If you have a content-heavy website and are looking for a new site and a better way to manage it, get in touch using the Project Planner below. We’d love to hear from you!