ClassicPress vs. Orchard Core: A Comprehensive CMS Comparison Guide

ClassicPress vs. Orchard Core: A Comprehensive CMS Comparison Guide


Welcome to our comprehensive comparison guide between ClassicPress and Orchard Core. As digital leaders and decision-makers, you understand the importance of selecting the right content management system for your organization's needs. In this article, we will delve into the key features and functionalities of both CMS platforms to help you make an informed choice.

ClassicPress and Orchard Core are both popular CMS options, but they differ in various aspects, including their foundations, design, content management capabilities, collaboration features, performance, customization options, SEO tools, security measures, and migration support. Let's explore each of these areas in detail to understand how these CMS platforms can suit your organization's requirements.

Foundations of CMS

ClassicPress is a community-led fork of WordPress, created specifically for organizations that prefer to stay with the Classic Editor experience. It provides a stable platform that continues to receive security updates, bug fixes, and new features from its dedicated community. ClassicPress offers the familiarity of WordPress while branching out with its own unique direction.

In contrast, Orchard Core is an open-source CMS built on the ASP.NET Core framework. It utilizes modular components, enabling developers to create custom websites and applications. With its flexible architecture and extensive APIs, Orchard Core empowers organizations to build complex websites or integrate it into existing systems seamlessly. Its extensibility and modern technology stack make it a popular choice among developers.

Both CMS platforms have their own merits, and the decision between ClassicPress and Orchard Core will depend on your organization's specific requirements and technological preferences.

Now, let's move on to the design and user experience aspect of these CMS platforms.

Design & User Experience

When it comes to design and user experience, ClassicPress and Orchard Core offer distinct approaches. ClassicPress retains the user-friendly interface and intuitive design that WordPress users are familiar with. Its Classic Editor provides a straightforward and uncomplicated content creation experience for both beginners and experienced users. However, it may lack the flexibility and modern design options that some organizations desire.

On the other hand, Orchard Core takes pride in its flexible and modular design. It offers a wide range of customizable templates and layouts to create visually appealing websites. With its flexible content modeling and layout management, Orchard Core empowers users to design and structure their content in a way that suits their precise needs. This makes it an excellent choice for organizations that prioritize flexibility and advanced design capabilities.

Both CMS platforms excel in their own way when it comes to design and user experience. Consider the specific design requirements and preferences of your organization to determine which CMS aligns better with your needs.

Now let's dive into the content management capabilities offered by ClassicPress and Orchard Core.

Content Management

Content management is a critical aspect of any CMS. ClassicPress and Orchard Core excel in providing robust content management capabilities, albeit with different approaches.

ClassicPress focuses on simplicity and ease of use. It offers a familiar interface with an intuitive dashboard, making it easy for content creators to publish and manage their content. ClassicPress also provides a variety of content types, including pages, posts, categories, and tags, allowing organizations to categorize and organize their content efficiently. Additionally, ClassicPress integrates well with popular plugins and extensions, expanding its core functionality even further.

Orchard Core takes a more modular approach to content management. It offers a content management system built on structured content, allowing organizations to create and manage content types with custom fields and attributes. Orchard Core's content management capabilities are highly customizable and can be extended through modules and themes. It also provides a flexible API for seamless integration with other systems and services.

Both CMS platforms offer robust content management capabilities, but the choice between ClassicPress and Orchard Core will depend on your organization's unique content management requirements and preferences.

Collaboration & User Management

Collaboration and user management are essential considerations for organizations that require multiple users to contribute to their CMS. Both ClassicPress and Orchard Core offer features to streamline collaboration and user management.

ClassicPress allows organizations to create user roles and assign specific permissions to each role. This ensures that each user has the appropriate level of access and capabilities within the CMS. ClassicPress also supports user authentication options, including social logins and two-factor authentication, enhancing security and convenience.

Orchard Core provides a robust user management system with customizable user roles and permissions. It offers granular control over user access, allowing organizations to define fine-grained access levels for users based on their roles. Orchard Core also provides built-in support for multi-tenancy, enabling the management of multiple websites or applications from a single installation.

Both CMS platforms offer extensive collaboration and user management capabilities. Consider the specific collaboration needs of your organization, such as the number of users and the level of control required, to determine which CMS is better suited for your organization.

Performance, Scalability, & Hosting

Performance, scalability, and hosting capabilities are crucial factors to consider when selecting a CMS that can handle your organization's growth and demands.

ClassicPress prides itself on being a lightweight CMS that offers excellent performance. It requires fewer server resources compared to other CMS platforms, making it a suitable option for organizations with limited hosting resources or budget constraints. Additionally, ClassicPress has a wide range of hosting options available, from shared hosting to dedicated servers.

Orchard Core's performance and scalability are driven by its underlying ASP.NET Core framework. With ASP.NET Core's modular architecture and performance optimizations, websites built on Orchard Core can handle high traffic volumes and scale efficiently. Hosting options for Orchard Core include cloud providers, dedicated servers, and managed hosting services.

Consider your organization's current and future hosting requirements, such as expected traffic and scalability needs, to determine which CMS suits your hosting preferences and performance expectations.

Customization, Extensions, & Ecosystem

The ability to customize and extend a CMS's functionality is vital for organizations that require tailored solutions. Both ClassicPress and Orchard Core provide customization options and have robust ecosystems of extensions and themes.

ClassicPress supports a vast number of plugins and themes from the WordPress ecosystem, allowing organizations to enhance their CMS with additional features and visually appealing designs. ClassicPress also retains backward compatibility with WordPress plugins and themes, providing organizations with a wide selection of options to extend their website's functionality.

Orchard Core, being modular by design, offers a powerful customization experience. It allows developers to create custom modules, themes, and widgets to tailor their CMS to their precise needs. Orchard Core's module gallery provides a range of pre-built modules to add specific functionalities quickly. It also benefits from the ASP.NET Core ecosystem, with numerous libraries and tools available for integration.

Consider your organization's customization requirements and the availability of specific extensions or themes within each CMS's ecosystem to determine which platform can better accommodate your customization needs.

SEO, Marketing, & Monetization

For organizations focused on search engine optimization (SEO), marketing, and monetization, the capabilities of a CMS in facilitating these aspects is crucial.

ClassicPress offers a range of SEO plugins and tools that can optimize a website's visibility in search engine results. It also supports integration with popular marketing tools and email marketing platforms, enabling organizations to promote their content effectively. Monetization options, such as advertisements and e-commerce integration, are readily available through ClassicPress' extensive plugin library.

Orchard Core provides SEO-friendly features out-of-the-box, such as clean URLs and automatic sitemap generation. It also supports integration with popular analytics and marketing platforms, helping organizations gain insights into their audience and effectively market their content. Orchard Core has a flexible e-commerce module that allows organizations to set up online stores and monetize their websites.

Evaluate your organization's SEO, marketing, and monetization goals to determine which CMS provides the necessary capabilities and integrations to achieve them effectively.

Security & Compliance

Security and compliance are critical considerations for organizations dealing with sensitive data or operating in regulated industries.

ClassicPress prioritizes security and provides regular updates to address vulnerabilities. It benefits from the extensive security measures and practices followed by the WordPress community. Additionally, ClassicPress has an active and engaged community that promptly addresses security concerns and provides a secure environment for organizations.

Orchard Core also emphasizes security and follows best practices for secure coding. The ASP.NET Core framework utilized by Orchard Core has built-in security features, including data protection and cross-site scripting prevention. Organizations can also benefit from regular security updates and patches provided by the Orchard Core community.

When it comes to compliance, both CMS platforms offer features and plugins to assist organizations in meeting various regulatory requirements. It is essential to evaluate the specific compliance needs of your organization and ensure that the chosen CMS covers those requirements adequately.

Migration, Support, & Maintenance

Migrating to a new CMS, as well as ongoing support and maintenance, are important aspects to consider when selecting a CMS platform.

ClassicPress offers a relatively straightforward migration process from WordPress, providing a seamless transition for organizations already using WordPress. Additionally, ClassicPress has a passionate community that actively supports users, provides resources, and aids in troubleshooting issues. Organizations can also rely on various hosting providers that offer ClassicPress-specific support.

Orchard Core offers migration tools and documentation to aid organizations in transitioning from other CMS platforms. Its community is helpful and actively assists users in solving issues and sharing knowledge. Organizations may also choose to partner with agencies or development teams specializing in Orchard Core for professional support and maintenance.

Evaluate your organization's migration requirements, available resources for ongoing support, and the level of technical expertise within your team to determine which CMS better fulfills your migration, support, and maintenance needs.


In conclusion, ClassicPress and Orchard Core present two compelling options for organizations seeking a content management system. ClassicPress leverages the strengths of the WordPress ecosystem, offering a familiar and user-friendly experience with a wide range of plugins and themes. Orchard Core, on the other hand, provides a modular and extensible framework built on ASP.NET Core, catering to organizations with unique customization requirements and advanced development needs.

To make an informed decision, assess your organization's specific priorities and preferences in areas such as design, content management, collaboration, performance, customization, SEO, security, and support. Consider the future scalability and growth potential of your organization as well. This comprehensive analysis of ClassicPress and Orchard Core should provide you with valuable insights, enabling you to choose the CMS that best suits your organization's requirements and goals.


Martin Dejnicki
Martin Dejnicki

Martin is a digital product innovator and pioneer who built and optimized his first website back in 1996 when he was 16 years old. Since then, he has helped many companies win in the digital space, including Walmart, IBM, Rogers, Canada Post, TMX Group and TD Securities. Recently, he worked with the Deploi team to build an elegant publishing platform for creative writers and a novel algorithmic trading platform.