Wordpress user wondering if Kirby is right for me

I am an end user, not a developer/designer/etc. Having said that, I did manage to put my own Wordpress site together after many hours of trial and error, cursing, web searching, rum binging, asking questions, etc. I have grown tired of WP bloat, the constant updating/maintenance, the constant framework/theme/plugin renewals, etc.

My site resides at: https://hdpowerequipment.com

It’s pretty basic. I use WooCommerce to display products on the ‘Inventory’ page, but it’s not a typical ‘store’ because you can’t buy anything (prices, cart, checkout, member logins, etc., have all been disabled).

I have a couple important (to me) questions to ask about Kirby’s capabilities:

  1. Is it possible in Kirby to create a similar page to my Inventory page where I am able to sort via both Category and Tags?
    1. I am open to using Posts for my products as long as I can display them on one page and have the ability to sort them.
    2. If 1.1 is not ideal (or possible), what other choice(s) do I have to accomplish this?
  2. My Generator Sizing Calculator page uses a Wordpress plugin called Calculated Fields Form where I enter the formulae and it generates the ‘calculator’ for my site visitors to use. Would something like this be possible with Kirby? I understand a plugin likely does not exist, but am open to learning another way to reach the same end-point.

Thanks for taking the time to read this post.

This is absolutely possible in Kirby and in fact quite a few users of this forum have used Kirby for inventory management with features such as multiple filtering with great success. The easiest way would indeed be to create a page for each product and attach category and tags to each.
The Kirby docs are always being improved and there’s a recipe in the cookbook (the local jargon for a tutorial) that’s a great base for you to start with https://getkirby.com/docs/cookbook/filtering#using-filters-with-forms-e-g-select-fields

This is not something that would work today out of the box in Kirby. The good thing, though, is that Kirby doesn’t limit you in what you can build, and so you wouldn’t have to use an awful plugin that loads countless assets you don’t need.
This form could be built inside a snippet and the calculations performed in Javascript. This would be custom work but there shouldn’t be any complexities to build that.

If you were able to struggle your way through building your own Wordpress site, I can assure you that you will enjoy your way learning to do so with Kirby. Here’s why:

  1. For starters, this very forum is one of the best things about Kirby. Aside from the official support team of @lukasbestle and @texnixe, you’ll find a wealth of great posts and soon realize that there are many community members that are very active and help each other.
  2. It’s lean, clean, and fast. If you haven’t already, you should download the latest release and give it a try. You’ll see for yourself.
  3. You don’t need to use any third party plugins. But you can, and there are many amazing developers that strive to create powerful, on point, and free plugins!
  4. You can try it for free for as long as you want on a local server, and realize for yourself whether you think the cost of a license is worth it or not.

Hi @ron_jeremy,

as @Thiousi already said, it is absolutely possible to build such a page in Kirby.

However, if you want to start out on that journey, you should know that there is not much you can get done with Kirby if you don’t want to get your hands dirty with basic PHP coding.

Having said that, Kirby makes this process easy with its API and the forum is always here to help you quickly and competently. And you will be rewarded with a very fast website without any bloat, all created by yourself from the templates to the styling :slight_smile:

1 Like

I agree with others that you would have to learn a bit of PHP to be able to build your website, and that it’s not that difficult, and that Kirby provides tools that make it rather easy. To see if that is for you, maybe find a PHP 101 tutorial somewhere and see if you can follow or if the task looks really daunting.

I have some reservations about the calculators page, because building that would require that you work with a second language, JavaScript. To build that from scratch, you would need to know at least a little bit about HTML form elements, JavaScript events and DOM scripting (how you can manipulate HTML elements from the page using JavaScript). I’d say this is a little bit more complex than your other needs for this website, and it requires working with a second programming language, which can be a lot all at once for a beginner.
If you do want to go that way, I recommend taking the simpler example from your calculators page and trying to code it from scratch in a HTML page. If it’s a challenging but fun task, go for it. If it makes you feel miserable, maybe not.

Thanks to all for your input.

I installed Kirby on my Mac (MAMP) and played around with it for a while and quickly realized this might be over my head. Could I learn it given enough time? Yeah, probably. Is that the best way to spend my time considering my business is new? Probably not.

I think I’d be better off paying a developer to ‘get me started’. That is, to build the site to a point where all I do is simply keep adding my inventory (whether it be via pages, posts, projects, or some other form) to a filterable portfolio/collections page.

Same would go for the calculator, where I’d hand over the formulae and let the developer run with it.

Is there a Kirby ‘preferred site builders’ list somewhere?

Hi @ron_jeremy
There’s no preferred site builders but there’s quite a few of us in the forum that are fully competent to build sites with Kirby (and for some, it’s a full time job).

What I can recommend is that you create a new post in the forum in the category ‘jobs’ and try to outline as best as you can what you’re trying to achieve. It’s common practice to do this and then move on to private messages with developers to pick the best match for your needs.


Thanks very much for the prompt reply. That sounds like a good idea. I will sit down and think about this before posting in the Jobs section.

I have to be up front and say I am very happy with the Kirby community. A couple other flat file CMS’s I tried had communities that were either not newbie friendly or were simply stagnant (most member posts left unanswered).


That’s a good idea, there’s more than enough to do when you start out with a business. I’m sure you will easily find a good developer here on the forum :slight_smile:.

And you can always count on the community to help you out if you have a problem.

I just made the switch to Kirby after using Wordpress on various sites for many years. I don’t know if this will help, but I wrote something about this on my Kirby-powered site: http://jony.io/blog/choosing-between-kirby-wordpress. Granted, this is written from the perspective of working with Kirby on a personal site, but perhaps there are some pieces in there that might help make your decision. Cheers :beers:

Also, if you were able to put your WordPress site together with research and some elbow grease, you shouldn’t have any problems with Kirby.

Hi @jony, thanks for your thoughtful reply. I checked out your site and noticed the six thumbnail images at the bottom of your portfolio page load very slowly. I’m surprised to see this because I thought a flat file site is supposed to be very fast (considering no database). Your hosting seems to be in California, so I’m not that far from you, too. Thoughts?

@ron_jeremy: The background images @jony uses are very big, so it slows the page down, this has nothing to do with Kirby.

We actually gave this feedback to @jony in another thread yesterday. There are easy to use functions in Kirby which permit resizing images on the fly which is very useful to make sure the page will load fast.
A flat file CMS like Kirby can be as fast as a plain html site or as slow as a bloated Wordpress site. It’s all based on how the developer codes the website, and how well the assets are optimized.

Working on this as we speak – definitely not a Kirby issue. Some of my hero images are 5mb, because I forgot to optimize them from the local installation. Doesn’t help that I have 150mbs down, so I didn’t notice any loading issues until you guys said something. Short fix is to re-upload smaller images (which I’m doing now), and then I will work on implementing the media query solution suggested by @texnixe in another thread. :sweat_smile:

1 Like

Kirby may help for back-end performance (less PHP code executing, no database—which is not always a win but is generally a boost for a small website such as a portfolio). It won’t manage or fix your front-end performance for you.

For front-end performance:

  1. Many things, like avoiding images that are too big or not well compressed, are pretty basic. Some are more technical and require bits of knowledge on how web browsers render a web page.
  2. You can use tools to highlight issues. For instance Google’s Page Speed Insights. (Some of their advice is a bit advanced and questionable though.)

Nice read: https://fabianmichael.de/blog/from-wordpress-to-kirby