WordPress vs PHP: Which is better?

PHP is one of the most powerful scripting languages. It powers millions of websites. Some sites built using it are Facebook, Slack, Wikipedia, etc. WordPress is the world’s most popular content management system/website builder. It has an impressive market share of over 63%, and over a quarter of web portals you’ll find on the internet are powered by it.

What is the difference between Hypertext Preprocessor and WordPress? Should you build a website from scratch using PHP or WP? Let’s find it out!

WordPress is open-source PHP-based software. PHP is one of the many web technologies used by it. Some other technologies employed by the builder are React, CSS, and JavaScript. The Hypertext Preprocessor is written in C. For those who don’t know, C is one of the most sophisticated programming languages. Several programming languages are built using C. Let’s have a look at various important features of Hypertext Preprocessor/WP.

Hooks and functions

WP features many custom functions written using PHP. The Hypertext Preprocessor has a massive library of functions that WP uses. Its function doesn’t use any custom WP function, but WP uses plenty of Hypertext Preprocessor functions.


Gutenberg is the backbone of the WP sites. It’s a modern, feature-rich page editor. If you’re using an IDE that can generate forms on the fly, you can save time else, you’ll have to write the code yourself.

To build a PHP site, you should know these three technologies – PHP, CSS, and HTML. JavaScript is unnecessary unless you want to use Ajax or implement client-side functions. Although WordPress is built using PHP, you don’t have to be an expert in the three web technologies we’ve mentioned above to build a WP site. WP’s React JS technology-powered editor, Gutenberg, allows you to build beautiful pages from scratch without writing a line of code. Like Wix and Weebly, the website builder offers modules called blocks. You should put the blocks on the page and customize them according to your requirements.

WordPress Gutenberg editor lets users create complex layouts featuring rows and columns. You must insert the row block in the page or the column block in a row to create a layout. A row can have up to three columns if you use the WP CMS’s column block. You can use a third-party Gutenberg block plugin to add more columns to the row. If you’re using the Hypertext Preprocessor, you’ll have to create rows and columns from scratch by writing code if you want to use row/column-based layouts.

Implementing new features

You must write the code yourself, no matter what function or feature you want to add to a custom-built PHP site. WP users must find, install and activate a plugin to add a new feature to their site. For example, the user must install a sticky header WordPress plugin to make a navigation bar on their sites sticky. Likewise, to add a custom meta description, and title to the page, you must install a WordPress SEO plugin. Similarly, to design a new form, you should install a form builder plugin.


A new version of WP is rolled out every year, and before a new edition of WP is rolled out, the CMS/website builder is thoroughly tested by the WP core developers. Even the themes and plugins are thoroughly tested by their developers. Thus, we can say that WP is a safe product. If you build a site from scratch, you’ll have to test the code of your site thoroughly before deploying the website on the server.


As WP is open-source and has a large user base, finding a solution to your problem won’t be difficult as the solution to the problem you’ve encountered might already be available on the internet. For example, the “error establishing database connection” is an error many WP users encounter daily. The solution to this problem is covered on hundreds of your websites.

Likewise, if you’re facing an issue with a WordPress theme or a plugin, you can seek help from the theme/plugin developer. No matter what error you encounter with a website you’ve built, you will have to fix the problem by yourself.


WP is a secure platform. How can we say so? If you go through its Security and Maintenance release log, you’ll find dozens of security-related changes. Thus, an end user doesn’t have to worry about the security of the WordPress core. The only thing the user should worry about is the theme’s/plugin’s security and the security of the server/WP dashboard.

When a developer submits their theme/plugin to be included in the WP repository, the reviewer will check the code to ensure that it is safe and adheres to the WP standards. After a plugin/theme is included in the WP repository, the developer may not update their items. The product might be using a function or a library with some vulnerabilities.

The login/registration page of WordPress websites is one of the most attacked pages of the web portal. Users can access their dashboard only after signing into their accounts. From these two examples, one can conclude that the security of a WP site depends on the user.

In the case of custom-built PHP websites, a site will be secure if the developer employs “secure coding practices” while building the web portal.

From the above paragraphs, it’s clear that building a WP website is much easier than coding a PHP site. If you don’t know coding, you should use WP. If you know Hypertext Preprocessor, HTML, and CSS well, you should use your skills and build a portal from scratch because coding is fun.


Pramod is the founder of wptls. He has been using WordPress for more than nine years. He builds web applications, and writes about his experiences with various WP products on this site.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *