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Home Forums Back End How Big a site can WordPress handle as a CMS?

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    Very true. If you thought about about building a site like Amazon or RetailMeNot in WordPress, you wouldn’t handle those by creating millions of pages. If you tried that, you’d hit the limitations of WordPress very quickly. But you could make a product template page and render it using shortcodes and rewrite rules, right? The question then becomes, how could you allow editors to modify content on your database-driven web site.


    The question then becomes, how could you allow editors to modify content on your database-driven web site.

    Not that I would ever use WP to do this, but you make another page (and/or an API) to manage data entries. This would need to be a “plug-in” or independednt feature, since WP (AFAIK; and most other cms’s do the same) implements custom data using an E-A-V model, which is very inefficient with larger datasets.


    I’m with @traq API all the way. You can use WP as persistence layer. And front end can be whatever, Angular etc…


    @BenWalker is Wikipedia not a website?



    No Wiki is not a website.



    For the sake of argument, let’s define a URL which returns content as a ‘web page’.

    By that definition, Wikipedia has hundreds of thousands of ‘pages’, despite it being a site with page templates which is database driven.

    I understand that WordPress is limited in terms of how it queries the database, however I’m currently using it to power a CRM with over 50k entries and it’s handling it just fine.


    Perhaps you should re-read @BenWalker’s last comment.

    You’re missing the point though. Wikipedia doesn’t have “hundreds of thousands of pages”. It has a template for an entry, and then a (very big) database with lots of entries’s contents. …It’s more about how you think about the data model than quibbling over what we’re meaning by the term “page”.

    For the sake of argument, let’s define a URL which returns content as a ‘web page’.

    We’re not here for “the sake of argument.” We were answering a user’s question, and trying to explain a concept. If you wish, we can explain further; but it’s not a contest. The distinction I was trying to make is that one needs to change the way they think about what “a page” actually is. By insisting on a definition that serves your purpose, you are completely ignoring the point of that distinction.


    I would like to bring this discussion to life again to find the best way to use WP for a very large site or to find best alternatives.

    The site I plan has the potential to be very large – think one “page” / url for every teacher in private schools in the US – about 500k (this is not the actual purpose, but illustrates it well)

    As has been suggested, basically I need a template page which is populated from a DB.

    Initially each ‘page’ will have exactly the same info. Basically a lot of fields with details of each teacher.

    But, each teacher needs an individual URL and some of these teachers (maybe 100k) will choose to log in and add custom info below the main table.

    I would like to keep WP for home page and several standard pages.

    I also want the url structure to be integrated into the Wp structure (not on a sub domain).

    I note @Mroyal’s point about WP admin, so I don’t want to create 500k WP pages.

    Obviously all content and url’s need to be dynamically generated from a second DB.

    What might be best for this:

    Custom WP plugin
    Some completely different system
    Some hybrid system (WP for ‘static’ pages, other system for ‘dynamic’ pages)

    I know all WP pages are dynamic.

    What else do I need to consider, what else do you need to ask?

    Thanks ColinK


    Hi @colink.

    You might be better off creating a new thread – your topic is slightly different in that you’re seeking advice on a specific site construction.

    As a very brief summary, to give clear advice you may need to give more information about your site’s needs. In particular, what needs are there regarding review and analysis of the submitted information?

    The best way to start would be to write down all the functions the site is expected to provide (in particular focus on user needs – both the teachers’ and the site administrators’). We’ll need to know what you want before we can discuss how best to do it. (You may have all of this sorted already!)



    Thanks for the input. I need to think those things through before posting a new thread.

    Can anyone recommend any useful places to do some reading about:

    • Best practices for very large sites
    • Integrating WordPress with other Types of CMS, Custom CMS
      or custom html/CSS/PHP/MySQL pages.

    Thanks ColinK



    Yes, as we all know, WP can handle a lot of posts, also others CMS systems, BUT, try to instal this WP on a great server with a lot of Ram and a good proccesor. And on the client side force the user to search in categories and tags not in all database. This options that I mencion it above can improve the site performance. Do you unferstand what I mean?

    Participant is a WordPress site. Just take a look at the code.


    Use Drupal. Its much more scaleable then any other CMS. I personally work on several big projects and I can say that Drupal can be so big that you cannot imagine. One Drupal installation – main domain and 50 sub domains, 150 installed modules (custom, contribute), 5 years of constant development and its working really well. :)


    Hello @stancevicbranko.
    Sorry to get back to you with bad news but, you are not quite right sir… There is no such thing as best cms or framework. There is best development logic and server configuration… So in this case i advice you to try different CMS, servers, etc…

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