CMSimple vs. Coaster CMS: A Comprehensive Comparison Guide

CMSimple vs. Coaster CMS: A Comprehensive Comparison Guide


Welcome to our comprehensive comparison guide between CMSimple and Coaster CMS. In today's digital landscape, having a robust and user-friendly content management system is crucial for organizations to effectively manage their online presence. CMSimple and Coaster CMS are two popular options that offer unique features and capabilities. In this guide, we will dive deep into the foundations, design, content management, collaboration and user management, performance and hosting, customization and ecosystem, SEO and marketing, security and compliance, as well as migration, support, and maintenance of these two CMS platforms. By the end of this comparison, you will gain a clear understanding of which CMS is the better fit for your organization's needs.

Foundations of CMS

The foundation of a CMS is its underlying architecture and technology. CMSimple is a lightweight and straightforward CMS written in PHP. It allows users to manage their websites without the need for extensive technical skills. The simple and intuitive interface makes it easy to create and publish content. On the other hand, Coaster CMS is a more robust and feature-rich platform built on Laravel, a popular PHP framework. Its advanced architecture provides developers with greater flexibility and extensibility when building custom websites. Coaster CMS also offers a modular approach, allowing users to choose and install only the features they require.

With CMSimple, the emphasis is on simplicity and ease of use, making it ideal for small to medium-sized businesses with basic website requirements. Coaster CMS, on the other hand, caters to larger organizations or websites that require more complex functionality and scalability.

Both CMSimple and Coaster CMS are open-source, meaning they are continuously supported and improved by their respective communities. Regular updates and bug fixes ensure the platforms remain secure and up to date.

In terms of hosting requirements, CMSimple can run on most standard web hosting providers with PHP and MySQL support. Coaster CMS, with its more advanced features, may require a hosting environment that supports Laravel, including the capability to run Composer for package management.

Design & User Experience

When it comes to design and user experience, CMSimple offers a simple and minimalist interface. Its focus is on ease of use and straightforward content editing. The template system allows users to choose from various pre-designed templates or create their own. However, customization options may be limited compared to Coaster CMS.

Coaster CMS offers a more flexible and powerful design experience. It provides users with control over every aspect of website design. With its built-in code editor, developers can create custom themes and templates using HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. Coaster CMS also supports responsive design, ensuring websites look great on all devices. Additionally, for those who prefer a visual website building experience, Coaster CMS integrates seamlessly with popular drag-and-drop page builders like Elementor or Beaver Builder.

In terms of user experience, CMSimple's interface is straightforward and easy to navigate, with a minimal learning curve. Anyone familiar with basic word processing software will feel comfortable using CMSimple. Coaster CMS, while more feature-rich, may require some technical knowledge and training to fully utilize its capabilities.

Ultimately, the choice between CMSimple and Coaster CMS in terms of design and user experience depends on your organization's specific needs. If you require a simple and easy-to-use interface with basic customization options, CMSimple might be a suitable choice. However, if you prioritize design flexibility and customization possibilities, Coaster CMS may be the better option.

Content Management

Effective content management is at the core of any CMS. CMSimple offers basic content management capabilities, allowing users to create, edit, and publish web pages. The WYSIWYG editor makes it easy to format content with familiar word processing tools. Users can organize their content into hierarchical page structures, making it simple to manage even large websites. However, CMSimple's content management may lack some advanced features found in other CMS platforms.

Coaster CMS, on the other hand, provides a more comprehensive content management experience. It offers a powerful content editor that supports both WYSIWYG and raw code editing. Users can easily create rich media content, such as image galleries and video embeds. Coaster CMS also includes advanced content versioning and revision history, ensuring that no changes are lost and providing the ability to roll back to previous versions if needed.

Both CMSimple and Coaster CMS support multi-language content, making it easier to create multilingual websites. However, Coaster CMS offers more advanced localization features, such as automatic language detection and content translation workflows. These features can be particularly beneficial for organizations with a global presence or targeting an international audience.

In summary, CMSimple provides a solid foundation for content management, especially for smaller websites with basic content needs. Coaster CMS, with its more advanced capabilities, is better suited for organizations that require a comprehensive content management system with features like media galleries, versioning, and multilingual support.

Collaboration & User Management

Collaboration and user management are vital aspects of any CMS, especially for organizations with multiple team members involved in content creation and publication. CMSimple supports basic user roles and permissions. Administrators can create user accounts with specific access levels, control their rights to create, edit, and publish content, and manage user directories.

Coaster CMS, on the other hand, offers a more advanced user management system. It allows for granular control over user roles and permissions, ensuring that the right people have the appropriate access levels. User groups can be created to manage permissions at a larger scale, simplifying the task of managing user access for larger teams. Coaster CMS also supports Single Sign-On (SSO) integration, enabling organizations to use existing authentication methods, such as Active Directory or LDAP, for user management.

Both CMSimple and coaster CMS provide basic editorial workflow capabilities, such as content approval before publication. However, Coaster CMS goes a step further by allowing users to define custom workflows with various stages and roles. This can be particularly useful for organizations with complex content approval processes or multiple levels of review.

For organizations that heavily rely on collaboration and user management, Coaster CMS offers more advanced features to streamline workflow and ensure efficient content creation and publication.

Performance, Scalability, & Hosting

The performance and scalability of a CMS are crucial, especially for high-traffic websites or organizations that anticipate future growth. CMSimple, being lightweight and simple in nature, generally performs well in terms of speed and resource usage. It can run on most standard web hosting providers and is suitable for smaller websites with moderate traffic.

Coaster CMS, built on Laravel, offers a more scalable and performant architecture. It can handle larger websites with high traffic volumes and provides options for caching and optimization. However, with increased functionality and flexibility comes increased hosting requirements. Coaster CMS may require a hosting environment with more resources and support for advanced features such as caching and load balancing.

When it comes to hosting options, both CMSimple and Coaster CMS can be hosted on a variety of environments, including shared hosting, virtual private servers (VPS), or cloud hosting providers. The choice depends on the specific requirements of your organization, such as expected traffic, scalability needs, and budget.

In summary, if you anticipate heavy traffic or have plans for future expansion, Coaster CMS's scalability and performance advantages make it a more suitable choice. For smaller websites with moderate traffic, CMSimple's lightweight nature may be sufficient.

Customization, Extensions, & Ecosystem

Customization and extensibility are crucial factors to consider when choosing a CMS, as they determine the flexibility and potential for future growth. CMSimple offers a range of pre-designed templates to choose from, allowing users to quickly customize the look and feel of their websites. However, the level of customization may be limited compared to Coaster CMS.

Coaster CMS provides extensive customization options. Users can create custom themes and templates using HTML, CSS, and JavaScript, giving them complete control over the website's appearance. Coaster CMS also offers a large community-driven ecosystem of extensions, plugins, and modules that can extend its functionality. This allows users to add features such as e-commerce, forums, or image galleries to their websites easily.

Both CMS platforms support the use of third-party extensions and plugins. However, due to its larger user and developer community, Coaster CMS has a wider range of available extensions, making it easier to find and integrate additional functionality into your website.

If the ability to customize and extend your website is a priority, especially with more complex functionalities, Coaster CMS provides a stronger ecosystem and customization options.

SEO, Marketing, & Monetization

SEO, marketing, and monetization are vital aspects of a CMS, especially for organizations looking to expand their online presence and generate revenue. CMSimple provides basic SEO features, such as customizable meta tags and URLs. It also allows users to easily integrate third-party SEO tools and analytics services.

Coaster CMS, being a more advanced platform, offers a broader range of SEO capabilities. It provides built-in SEO tools and features, such as XML sitemap generation, canonical URL support, and automatic meta tag generation. Coaster CMS also offers integrations with popular marketing automation and analytics platforms, allowing organizations to track and optimize their marketing efforts.

When it comes to monetization options, CMSimple provides basic support for integrating advertising networks and monetizing your website through ads. However, Coaster CMS offers more advanced monetization options, such as e-commerce functionality, subscription management, and payment gateway integrations.

If SEO, marketing, and monetization are significant aspects of your organization's online strategy, Coaster CMS provides more advanced capabilities and integrations.

Security & Compliance

Security and compliance are critical considerations when selecting a CMS, as they ensure the safety of your organization's data and protect your website from potential vulnerabilities. CMSimple, though simple in nature, emphasizes security. It follows best practices to prevent common security risks, such as cross-site scripting (XSS) and SQL injection attacks. Regular updates and patches are released to address any security vulnerabilities discovered.

Coaster CMS, with its more complex architecture, also emphasizes security. It leverages Laravel's built-in security features, such as protection against cross-site request forgery (CSRF) attacks and input validation. Additionally, Coaster CMS provides role-based access control and supports data encryption for enhanced security.

Both CMSimple and Coaster CMS allow administrators to define user roles and permissions, ensuring that only authorized users have access to sensitive areas of the CMS. Regular security updates are released for both platforms, addressing any discovered vulnerabilities promptly.

In terms of compliance, both CMS platforms provide the necessary features to adhere to data protection regulations, such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). They offer features like consent management, data access requests, and cookie consent mechanisms.

In summary, both CMSimple and Coaster CMS prioritize security and offer the necessary features to protect your website and ensure compliance with relevant regulations. Coaster CMS, with its more advanced security features, may be preferred for organizations with more stringent security requirements.

Migration, Support, & Maintenance

Migrating from one CMS to another can be a complex process. CMSimple offers straightforward backup and restore functionality, allowing users to easily transfer their website to a new hosting provider or environment. The relatively simple nature of CMSimple makes the migration process more manageable.

Coaster CMS provides tools and documentation to assist with the migration process. With its more advanced architecture, migration may require more technical expertise, especially when transferring custom themes, templates, and extensions.

When it comes to support and maintenance, both CMSimple and Coaster CMS have active communities and offer support through forums, documentation, and user guides. Regular updates are released, addressing bug fixes and security vulnerabilities.

It's important to consider your organization's technical resources and capabilities when choosing a CMS. CMSimple's simplicity makes it easier to maintain and troubleshoot without extensive technical knowledge. Coaster CMS, with its more advanced features, may require additional developer support or technical expertise.


In conclusion, CMSimple and Coaster CMS are two popular and capable content management systems with unique strengths and features. CMSimple excels in simplicity and ease of use, making it a suitable choice for smaller organizations with basic website requirements. Coaster CMS, built on Laravel, offers more advanced capabilities, flexibility, and scalability, making it a preferred choice for larger organizations or websites with complex functionality.

When considering the foundations, design, content management, collaboration and user management, performance and hosting, customization and ecosystem, SEO and marketing, security and compliance, as well as migration, support, and maintenance, it becomes clear that Coaster CMS provides a more robust solution overall. It offers advanced customization options, a powerful content management system, enhanced collaboration features, scalability for growth, and comprehensive SEO and marketing capabilities.

However, it's important to evaluate your organization's specific needs and resources. If simplicity and ease of use are key considerations, and if your website requirements are relatively basic, CMSimple may be a suitable choice. Ultimately, choosing the right CMS depends on your organization's unique needs, goals, and resources.


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.