Drupal, for years, has been a trusted platform for web development. However, with advancements in technology and evolving user needs, certain limitations of Drupal have become apparent.
One of the most commonly noted issues is its complexity in setup and customization. Unlike an all-in-one AI website maker that offers out-of-the-box solutions, Drupal often requires users to delve deep into systems, sometimes forcing them to seek external expertise.
Concerns have also arisen regarding the limited support for certain modules beyond Drupal 8, causing some users to remain stagnant on older versions.
These challenges led many to seek alternative, easier-to-use, and flexible platforms. Today, we'll explore five top contenders in 2024, weighing their pros and cons against Drupal's limitations.
Best Drupal Alternatives
- Durable: Best for Quick and AI-Enhanced Website Building
- WordPress: Best for Versatility and Vast Plugin Options
- Joomla: Best for Community-Based Sites and E-commerce
- Squarespace: Best for Designers and Creatives Seeking Aesthetic Templates
- Wix: Best for Drag-And-Drop Functionality and Small Businesses
Alternative #1: Durable
Durable’s AI website builder leverages AI to transform how small businesses and entrepreneurs establish their online presence. Our platform generates a complete website, including images and copy, within 30 seconds.
We recognize the challenges faced by business owners who might not have a marketing or website-building background, so we’ve tailored Durable to be as user-friendly as possible. You can get your site up and running with absolutely zero coding.
Durable offers an intuitive editor that allows for easy modifications, all without the usual complexities associated with traditional CMSs like Drupal.
Why Durable is a Better Alternative to Drupal
- User-Friendliness: Our primary aim is to help individuals and businesses get online without the hassle. With the power of AI, you can quickly generate a full website in 30 seconds. On the other hand, Drupal, albeit an extremely powerful tool, has a steeper learning curve. It requires a more profound knowledge of website building, making it challenging for beginners or those unfamiliar with content management systems.
- Maintenance and Updates: Durable's AI-driven platform manages many backend processes, ensuring that the site is always up to date without much intervention from the user. As an open-source platform, Drupal regularly releases updates, and it’s up to the site administrator to ensure they are installed properly.
- Clear Pricing and No Hidden Costs: With Durable, you know your expenses upfront, and our services are competitively priced - we even have a free plan for new businesses! There are no hidden fees, and since AI takes care of design and content generation, you can save on potential costs associated with hiring designers, developers, or copywriters.
- Integrated AI-Powered Tools: Durable comes packed with other AI-powered tools such as a CRM system, invoicing tool, and an AI assistant, offering a comprehensive "business in a box" solution. Drupal has a vast repository of modules, but integrating additional functionalities can demand a lot of technical expertise.
Durable Features and Benefits
- Ease of Building and Customizing
- AI Features
- Ecommerce Capabilities
1. Ease of Building and Customizing
For most users, the challenge often lies in creating a website that is aesthetically pleasing, functional, and easy to navigate.
With Durable, quick website generation capability, you get your website in three clicks. Go to our sign-up page and:
- Enter your business type
- Enter your location
- Enter your business name
Using this information, AI will generate a website tailored and optimized to your industry.
The technology behind Durable ensures that no two websites are the same. Based on the information provided, our platform offers tailored design elements, color palettes, and content suggestions, resulting in a unique website every time.
After our AI has generated your website, it's also easy to customize. Simply click on the "Customize" button to do so. You need to sign up to be able to customize.
To customize, click on a section. An editor will pop up on the right. Here, you can edit the text and images. Click “Save” when you are done. The editor is pretty simple and highly intuitive.
The changes you initiate are displayed in real-time, allowing immediate feedback and adjustments.
But what if you decide you want a complete overhaul or just a refresh in design in a certain section?
Use the "regenerate" button, and choose whether you want to change the content, style, or the entire section. Our AI swiftly presents a renewed design or content or both.
It’s also easy to add more pages or sections. Click on the "+" icon at the top of your editor, next to “Home”.
A menu pops up showcasing a variety of page templates tailored to different business needs. Choose what suits you, click “Add,” and it seamlessly integrates into your site, pre-filled with relevant content and visuals.
2. AI Features
Our AI integration goes far beyond mere website creation. It extends to managing and optimizing your website, enhancing its efficiency and effectiveness. Here’s a breakdown of the three main capabilities of our AI.
With Durable’s AI CRM, managing your leads and communications becomes seamless. Instead of manually sorting through leads or drafting repetitive emails, our AI CRM does it for you.
It automatically responds to leads, organizes contacts, and crafts client communications. When a contact form on your Durable website is filled, the system instantly crafts a unique, relevant response. You can also sync your email to Durable.
AI Blog Builder
Blogs are pivotal for SEO. They position businesses as thought leaders, drive organic traffic, and offer value to your audience.
However, blog creation requires dedication, time, and consistent quality content. Durable's AI Blog Builder makes this process significantly easier.
It helps you set up your blog and populate it with relevant posts in seconds. The beauty of this tool is the balance it strikes. You can rely on AI to generate content, but if you wish to add a touch of your own personality or make specific changes, the platform is flexible for personal edits to text, images, and layout.
Google Ad Writer
Marketing, particularly online marketing, amplifies your reach, introduces you to potential customers, and reinforces your brand. But crafting the right message requires skill, especially for platforms like Google Ads.
Durable's AI copywriter is trained to craft persuasive ad copies that resonate with your target audience, giving your ads the edge they need.
Instead of spending hours brainstorming and editing ad content, our AI provides ready-to-use, effective copy specifically optimized to boost your business growth.
3. E-commerce Capabilities
The surging trend of online shopping has revolutionized the shopping behavior of consumers globally. In times like these, a platform that can quickly turn your website into an e-commerce site is a game-changer.
While boasting of swift website creation, our platform delves deeper to cater to modern businesses. Durable seamlessly integrates e-commerce functionalities into your existing website.
Durable integrates with Stripe, one of the industry's leading payment gateways. Stripe is renowned for its robust security measures and ability to handle transactions smoothly. This partnership ensures every transaction made on a Durable-powered website is swift and secure.
At Durable, we prioritize clarity and transparency. We understand that every business, a start-up or an established entity, values cost-effective solutions.
To cater to diverse needs, we offer three straightforward pricing plans:
This plan is for individuals or aspiring entrepreneurs who are just starting out and need a website. While the options on this plan are limited, it's a great way to get started on your journey!
- Monthly: $15/month
- Annual billing: $12/month
This plan is tailored for those who are making waves with their entrepreneurial journey or for individuals running a side hustle. The starter package ensures you have all the essential tools to establish a solid online presence.
- Monthly: $25/month
- Annual billing: $20/month
The business plan is your best bet when you're ready to elevate your business operations and aim for greater heights. It's structured to provide advanced features and functionalities that can effectively scale with your growing business needs.
We also offer a 30-day money-back guarantee on all our paid plans.
Alternative #2: WordPress
With its roots in blogging, WordPress has prioritized ease of use and accessibility for users of all technical levels.
Whether you need a simple portfolio or need to run a global e-commerce business, WordPress is well-equipped to help you with both and everything in between.
One of the primary strengths of WordPress is its vast repository of plugins and themes. With thousands available, users can extend functionality and adjust the appearance of their websites.
This approach minimizes the need for manual code modifications, making the setup process smoother and less daunting than some other platforms.
Why WordPress is a Better Alternative to Drupal?
1. User-Friendliness: WordPress has an intuitive dashboard and interface, making it relatively easy for individuals with minimal technical knowledge to set up and manage their websites. While it might require coding to some extent, it’s infinitely better and easier than Drupal.
2. Extensive Plugin Repository: WordPress has an extensive library of plugins. These plugins allow users to add various functionalities to their website without diving into code. While Drupal offers over 40,000+ modules for added functionalities, the volume and variety available in the WordPress ecosystem surpasses what's available for Drupal.
3. Lower Development Costs: The user-friendliness and vast array of plugins and themes available for WordPress often mean that less custom development is required. Most of the functionalities a website might need can be achieved through existing plugins, reducing the need for custom coding.
4. Regular Updates: WordPress frequently releases updates, ensuring the platform remains secure, functional, and aligned with the latest web standards. The active community ensures most plugins and themes also receive regular updates. While Drupal offers updates, the transition between major versions (like Drupal 7 to 8) can sometimes be complex, with certain modules becoming obsolete due to a lack of support.
WordPress Features and Benefits
- SEO Capabilities
- Themes and Customization
1. SEO Capabilities
WordPress makes it incredibly easy to optimize your site for organic traffic due to its vast range of plugins tailored to optimize sites for search engines.
WordPress provides comprehensive SEO tools, from technical aspects like sitemaps and meta tags to user-friendly URL structures and content analyses.
The platform’s coding and markup practices are consistent and clean, which makes things much easier for search engine crawlers.
Unlike Drupal, where things can go very wrong if not set up correctly by an expert, WordPress's intuitive nature provides less margin for error. So, while Drupal and WordPress have their strengths, the flexibility, user-friendliness, and extensive plugin ecosystem of WordPress make it a better alternative.
2. Themes and Customization
WordPress has an extensive library of themes, with 11,000+ free themes versus the meager 2500 for Drupal. They cater to various niches and design preferences.
With a powerful built-in customizer, WordPress allows you to tweak and tailor your site easily. Additionally, many premium themes come bundled with drag-and-drop page builders, further simplifying the design process.
Also, the recent introduction of the Gutenberg editor has transformed how users interact with content, making website building even more approachable for people without prior experience building sites.
WordPress is an open-source software — it's free to download and use. However, apart from the domain name and web hosting expenses, there are associated costs when setting up and maintaining a WordPress website.
Here’s a breakdown of the potential costs:
- Free Themes: WordPress.org offers thousands of free themes.
- Premium Themes: Range from $30 to $100 or more.
- Free Plugins: The WordPress repository contains over 50,000 free plugins.
- Premium Plugins: Prices range from $15 to $200.
The premium versions of themes and plugins aren’t always necessary. However, some core functionalities are locked behind paywalls to encourage users to buy subscriptions. However, despite that, these costs are minimal for basic sites, but add up for larger, more complex projects.
Alternative #3: Joomla
Since its inception in 2005, Joomla has maintained its position as one of the top CMS platforms, with a market share of 2.6%.
Built with PHP and utilizing MySQL for data storage, Joomla offers a blend of user-friendliness and extensibility.
Joomla is designed to assist users in creating and managing content-rich websites with minimal technical expertise. This is augmented by its MVC (Model-View-Controller) architecture, which allows developers to build powerful online applications using the platform.
Why Joomla is a Better Alternative to Drupal
- User-Friendly Interface: Joomla strikes a middle ground between the simplicity of WordPress and the complexity of Drupal. Joomla is an ideal compromise for users who find Drupal's learning curve steep but desire more flexibility than WordPress. Its admin dashboard is really well-built.
- Extension Ecosystem: While Drupal offers modules, Joomla has a rich collection of extensions that can be easily integrated into websites. These extensions include components, modules, plugins, and templates.
- Granular User Permissions: Joomla's user management system is detailed. It offers advanced user access control where permissions can be set for different user groups at multiple levels.
Joomla Features and Benefits
- Built-in Multilingual Support
- Repository of Extensions
1. Built-in Multilingual Support
Joomla provides out-of-the-box support for multiple languages. It provides over 70 translation packs.
These packs are crafted to ensure that every aspect of the core system can be translated easily.
Unlike in the Drupal CMS platform, where multilingual support might require modules or extensive customization, Joomla offers this feature inherently.
2. Repository of Extensions
Joomla has an extensive Extensions Directory with over 5,600 entries. This expansive library includes components, modules, plugins, languages, and templates, each designed to extend the core functionalities of a Joomla site.
Unlike the often complex modules in platforms like Drupal, Joomla’s extensions are user-friendly.
Many extensions come with intuitive dashboards, clear documentation, and straightforward installation processes.
Like WordPress and Drupal, Joomla is an open-source content management system (CMS). The core software is free to download and use.
And like other CMS platforms, the only money you’ll spend on Joomla will be for hosting, premium templates, extensions, custom development, and potential maintenance contracts.
Alternative #4: Squarespace
Squarespace offers an all-in-one platform for individuals and businesses eager to establish an online presence.
Unlike traditional CMS platforms that require separate hosting, domain registration, and potentially multiple plugins, Squarespace bundles these elements, streamlining the process of creating and launching a website.
The Fluid Engine drag-and-drop editor further complements these templates, allowing you to customize layouts, colors, fonts, and other elements effortlessly.
Beyond being just a website builder, Squarespace provides e-commerce tools. Users can set up online stores, manage inventory, process orders, and integrate with various payment gateways.
Why Squarespace is a Better Alternative to Drupal
Drupal is a powerful and flexible content management system. However, Squarespace presents certain advantages, making it a preferable alternative for specific user groups.
- All-in-One Solution: Squarespace offers a bundled solution, integrating hosting, domain registration, and CMS into one platform. This simplifies the process of getting a website up and running. With Drupal, users typically need to source their hosting and domain and install the CMS separately.
- E-commerce Integration: Drupal can support e-commerce functionalities via modules like Drupal Commerce. However, setting up an online store can be more complex. On the other hand, Squarespace has built-in e-commerce capabilities that allow for straightforward setup and management of online storefronts.
- Built-in Analytics: Squarespace offers built-in analytics tools and insights into website traffic, behavior, and more without additional modules or integrations. While Drupal integrates with tools like Google Analytics, it often requires additional setup and configuration.
- Cost Predictability: Squarespace has clear pricing tiers encompassing hosting, platform usage, and access to features. This clarity gives you predictability in terms of costs. In contrast, while Drupal is free, associated costs like hosting, premium themes, or hiring developers for customization can vary.
Squarespace Features and Benefits
- Squarespace App
- Easy-to-Use Ecommerce Features
1. Squarespace App
The Squarespace app lets users manage and edit their websites from mobile devices.
This flexibility is valuable in today's fast-paced world, where on-the-go updates are crucial.
The app allows direct uploading of images to galleries and blocks from a user's device. This facilitates real-time content sharing, especially for bloggers, photographers, and businesses that rely on timely visual content updates.
You can also review website traffic, visitor behavior, and other analytics directly from the app.
2. Easy-to-Use Ecommerce Features
Squarespace provides comprehensive, easy-to-use ecommerce features. You can sell various items, from products to services, subscriptions, digital content, and custom merchandise.
This versatility allows businesses of different scales and niches to tailor their online storefront to their specific needs, catering to a diverse clientele.
Unlike Drupal, Squarespace's e-commerce capabilities are tightly integrated within its platform. Users don't need to rely on many third-party plugins or modules to achieve essential e-commerce functionalities.
This integrated approach brings a more seamless user experience, making it easier for business owners and their customers to navigate the e-commerce process.
Another noteworthy advantage of Squarespace over Drupal in e-commerce is its consistent updates and in-house support. Squarespace frequently updates its platform, ensuring that users can always access the latest features and security enhancements.
- Personal Plan: $16 per month. Provides access to a host of fully customizable templates. For personal sites, blogs, or small-scale web projects.
- Business Plan: $23 per month. Tailored for enterprises or individuals looking to expand their reach. Includes advanced website features and allows users to start taking payments.
- Commerce Basic Plan: $27 per month. Crafted with e-commerce in mind. Doesn't charge transaction fees.
- Commerce Advanced Plan: $49 per month. Designed for seasoned sellers or businesses with extensive e-commerce needs. There are no transaction fees.
Alternative #5: Wix
Wix allows individuals and businesses to create professional websites without coding knowledge.
One of Wix's primary offerings is its drag-and-drop website builder. This intuitive tool provides a user-friendly interface where elements can be easily added, removed, or repositioned.
Wix also provides hosting solutions. So once a website is developed on Wix, it can be published and hosted on the Wix server, eliminating the need to seek external hosting providers.
Wix also places a strong emphasis on design aesthetics. The platform boasts a vast library of customizable templates for various industries and purposes. Each template is responsive.
Why Wix is a Better Alternative to Drupal
- Ease of Use: Wix is made for beginners. The drag-and-drop functionality allows even those without coding experience to build a website that looks and functions professionally. Drupal is significantly complex in comparison to Wix. Also, the capability to swiftly create and replicate websites or web pages in Wix for similar campaigns or services is invaluable, eliminating the need to start afresh every time.
- Ready-Made Templates: With over 800 free designer-made website templates, users can find something that fits almost any niche or industry. These templates are aesthetically pleasing, functional, and optimized for various devices.
- Customer Support: Wix's round-the-clock support for English speakers ensures that help is always available. Additionally, the platform offers live chat support. Drupal, being an open-source platform, relies heavily on community support. While the Drupal community is vast and helpful, having dedicated 24/7 support like Wix can be more reassuring for many users.
- Integrated Hosting: With Wix, you don't need to worry about finding a separate hosting provider, as hosting is included in all of Wix's plans. This integrated solution simplifies the website-building process.
Wix Features and Benefits
- Wix ADI
- Wix App Market
1. Wix ADI
Wix ADI is an AI technology within the Wix platform that enables you to create a website almost instantly based on your needs. Wix ADI can generate a complete website with just a few simple questions about the user's business or the website's purpose.
However, ADI isn’t nearly as intuitive as it should be. The customization options are severely limited for this platform. So, people mostly use ADI to build the core structure of their website and then switch to the manual editor for everything moving forward.
While it is a good place to lay down the foundation of your website, ADI’s capabilities are lacking past the initial setup.
2. Wix App Market
With over 500+ apps, you can find tools for adding a chatbot, integrating social media, or setting up an online booking system.
The ease with which apps can be integrated into a Wix site makes the Wix App Market better than the Drupal modules. You can add new functionalities without coding or technical expertise with just a few clicks.
The Wix App Market offers a mix of free and premium apps. You can start with free versions to get a feel for the app's utility and upgrade to premium versions for additional features and capabilities.
Wix offers plans categorized into three main groups: Website Plans, Business and E-commerce Plans, and Enterprise Plans. Below is a breakdown of each category and its associated sub-plans.
They are designed for those who wish to build a professional online presence without the need to process transactions of any kind on their site.
- VIP: $24.50 per month
- Unlimited: $12.50 per month
- Combo: $8.50 per month
- Connect Domain: $4.50 per month
Business and E-commerce Plans
These plans are for users looking to run a business online, particularly those intending to accept online payments.
- Business VIP: $35 per month
- Business Unlimited: $25 per month
- Business Basic: $17 per month
They are tailored for large-scale businesses with specific and often more complex needs. This plan supports added features like advanced security, dedicated support, infrastructure customization, and scalability to handle large volumes of traffic and transactions.
What is the Best Drupal Alternative?
After an exhaustive evaluation, we have compared Drupal with other leading platforms like Durable, WordPress, etc., to determine which offers the best value to users.
Here's a breakdown of our scoring based on key features:
Get Started with Durable
Building a website should be easy and fast. You shouldn’t spend hours figuring out codes or getting lost in complex designs. With Durable, making a website is as simple as a few clicks.
Our smart AI tools help you manage it and keep it fresh. From writing blog posts to answering customer queries, our AI tools save you time and effort.
We also believe in clear and fair pricing—no hidden costs or surprises.
Don't have any money to start a website? No problem! You can still build a website with Durable completely free of charge in just 30 seconds.