No WordPress, huh?

This tweet appeared on my Twitter timeline at 3:02 PM · Feb 13, 2023

Thanks to Mario Peshev @no_fear_inc – 2 min

We tried to avoid using WordPress… and we failed. 🙁

I spent 10 weeks exploring WordPress alternatives for both startups and growing projects.
All of my efforts were in vain. Here’s why.

1. Memberships

I ran two surveys on community and memberships and gauged different platforms (including Circle). Powerful communities are both real-time (chat systems like Slack, Discord, Telegram, and Teams) and document-based (books, courses, worksheets). Existing membership communities are not customizable enough once you dive into complex plans, upsells, and integrating with different business tools. Options like Gumroad work for individual products. Jason Coleman and Kim Coleman have been instrumental in PMPro setup on top of several other commerce-driven options (depending on need).

2. eCommerce

Shopify and BigCommerce are strong contenders in the commerce space. But our commerce brands offer subscriptions. Handle variations. Require different marketplace-based experiences (different look and feel per partner). Let alone integrating a more complex marketing or sales funnel – say, Marketo + Salesforce support in multistep forms and broadcasted subscriptions. WooCommerce still leads the way.

3. Landing Pages

I use Instapage for 5 landers and have tried out LeadPages, Unbounce, Carrd (and others). Most options work well as a concept. Or a quick prototype/demo. Or validating a business idea. They fail at presenting a seamless and consistent experience as the main site evolves. Consistent corporate identity. Reusable headers and menus. Maintaining at scale becomes a nightmare. And existing templates are limited. Aside from our Gutenberg builds, we also do Elementor kits depending on the look and feel. Thanks to Miriam Schwab and Uri Alexandrovitz for great ideas at scale for Elementor and static sites.

Additional essential details contributing to these decisions:

  • Native SEO for WordPress. Works out of the box and scales immensely with Yoast or All In One SEO Multilingual support.
  • Webflow is a popular site builder – but it only supports Weglot as a translation tool, limiting site structure or subdirectory-based SEO.
  • Content types. Other systems don’t provide the flexibility of custom post types and taxonomies, custom filtering, advanced search… (the list goes on)
  • Speed. WordPress can scale – indefinitely. And NitroPack is a turnkey SaaS solving core web vitals in minutes.
  • Cost. WordPress is nearly free as you start and cheaper than enterprise-grade at scale. Most enterprise web content management systems cost $50K – $100K in annual hosting fees alone – development not included and limited to a small subset of vendors.
  • Portability. DevriX has migrated 20+ proprietary CMS and custom frameworks to WordPress. It’s an expensive and painful exercise when vendor lock-in is in play. This includes sitemap crawlers, page scrapers, and throttled bots pulling markup and converting over.


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