CMS vs Framework in web development

Certainly there have been a lot of argument between the cms as well as framework technology that which is the best. But there are some basic things that you have to think before you choose any framework or a CMS in my personal opinion:Building a website from scratch is an intense hard working.

Nowadays a huge number of people are using CMS and frameworks to build their website within a very short period of time by spending less money. But, when you use the terminology Framework or CMS most of the clients and newbie developer got confused.

So, let's find out the difference and which one is best for you -


CMS abbreviation content management system is a framework based on the modules rather than code. It is a Web Application for managing web content. Anyone can handle a CMS without knowing a single line of code. In other words, a CMS defines numerous categories of content like media, text, etc. and allows a user to add, edit and manage the content through a simple user interface. One of the best content management systems are WordPress, Drupal, Joomla, etc.


In the case of a framework, it is a library that makes it possible to develop a Web Application. The web application framework is simply based on programming coding. If you are a programmer or a web developer that loves coding you often choose a Web application framework for your projects. It gives you a programming area with a group of classes and methods. One of the best frameworks are Laravel, Codeigniter, Symfony, Zend, Cake PHP, etc.

CMS vs Framework

  • A CMS typically doesn’t require any coding knowledge since it is based on installable modules that don’t touch the original code.

  • A framework is a library that makes it possible to develop a web application using the pre-written code.

  • A CMS is built on top of an underlying framework.

  • The frameworks power thousands of websites. The framework’s code merely powers some of the functionality behind the site.

  • CMS allows you to manage the content of your website. It is a simple and easy way to create websites. It enables users to install themes, plugins, etc. without affecting the essential functionality of the site.

  • Most websites that are developed using a framework don’t carry a specific look. They can’t be distinguished from any other website.

  • With a CMS you get a predefined set of features, you can choose an already styled theme for your website and you can add new features by easily installing plugins.

  • With a framework, you have to build everything from scratch but you can create distinctive and unique features.

  • Frameworks don’t reinvent the wheel either, because the code you’re using is providing a base of features such as a login system or user privileges.

  • CMS’ are open-source, which means the code is available to anyone.

  • Since websites developed using frameworks will feature their own custom code that is integrated into the framework, it’s much harder to find security flaws.

  • Frameworks are highly customizable and CMS’ typically have limitations.

  • CMS’ can be adapted to have a lot of features through the use of plugins, but they are not very flexible.

  • A well-developed framework is far more secure than a generic CMS.

  • Frameworks offer much more freedom than CMS.

  • A framework comes at a high development cost.

  • CMS usually update every month. You will always want to take a backup of your site, even before installing an official update from your CMS provider.

  • A framework is rarely updated. A website developed using a framework can stay secure and functional even without updates.

  • Most frameworks come with Model View Controller (MVC) pattern that segregates the controls from the UI, the model, and the logic.

  • CMS solutions are brilliant for blogs, news sites, and corporate or informational websites. Frameworks can offer a higher level of customization and are suited to build a complex and heavy web application.

  • Some examples of CMS’ you might have heard of include Joomla, Drupal, and WordPress.

  • CodeIgniter, CakePHP, Zend, and Django are some of the well-known examples of web application frameworks.

So, which one to choose?

There has been a lot of argument between the CMS and Framework technology, that which is the best. A lot of CMS fans are saying, they can do anything with CMS where framework lovers are supporting frameworks for high customization. But, they both are not true! Actually, both framework and CMS are using the same base such as PHP, RoR, Python, .NET, etc. So, we all can do everything using any of them.

There are some basic things that you have to think before you choose any framework or a CMS for your project:

  • What do you want to do and how flexible you want

  • How much time you can invest

  • What the hosting environment will be

  • How much budget you have for the project

For faster development of your general purpose project, CMS is the option. You will get thousands of themes, plugins and backed up by the community, meaning that new features, bug fixes, support, tutorials, etc.

But, if you want to define your own structure and the logic of the application with customized workflow then the framework is the best choice for you. It will give you a platform where you can create a specific app without any redundant code.


It always depends on what you want to do and how much time you have to deal with it. Every tool is built for a reason, so it isn't worth it to be a CMS or a Framework fan. Just choose the best tool for your situation.

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