Pods Framework : A WordPress plugin to convert blogging system into awesome Content Management System

Pods is a plugin based on WordPress that easily extends the features of the WordPress system and make advanced CMS. Pods can be defined as ‘a framework for WordPress that allows you to create, extend, manage, and deploy customized content types and fields’, according to official page. WordPress has limited types of posts. There are five major post types that WordPress uses by default; Page, Post, Attachment, Revisions and Nav menus.
After WordPress 3.0, it gave us the capability to add our own custom post types and to use them in different ways. And then Pods framework revolutionized with that feature and developed a model for easy creation and implementation of custom post types.

Pods Framework

With Pods you can create new Post Types and Taxonomies, or extend any existing content type in WordPress including Post Types, Taxonomies, Media, Users, and Comments. Even more Advanced Pods allows us to have a base content type and add the fields and features we want.

Pods  provides a platform on which to build our own content types to manage along with great advanced functionality to have. Pods allows us to add context to content. We can assign Pods their own menu item with one easy click. Pods gives us easy URL rewriting and page templates.


Getting Started

Pods Homepage : Pods Framework
Download Pods: Download
Documentation : Pods Docs
Pods Official Forum : Forum

While understanding about Pods and its usefulness, one should also have knowledge about its cons. There is a list of pros and cons of Pods CMS and Custom Fields listed by a web developer and blogger Mike Van Winkle. It might clear the picture more.


Pods CMS

Pros

  • Fully customizable backend. You can specify exactly what fields the end user sees for any given content type.
  • Public form support makes setting up forms for adding content on the front end relatively easy.
  • Field formats are customizable, which means your database is only going to be as big as it needs to be. This also means your site will be more scalable.
  • Fields are relate-able. This is the biggest benefit to Pods.

Cons:

  • Not supported by WordPress development team. This is truly a plugin and WordPress is hesitant to support it. The good news is the Pods user base is growing rapidly and the bigger it gets, the less we will have to worry about this.
  • Pods content is not added to WordPress posts table by default which means it is not available to native WordPress functions, like comments and Akismet, and is inaccessible to many plugins, like WP-PostViews.
  • Because of the complicated relational database, SQL queries are more difficult than with custom fields. Though you can do more with Pods not using SQL than you can with custom fields using SQL.

Custom Fields

Pros:

  • Native to WordPress. Does not require plugin installation to function and all posts are immediately connected to other WordPress plugins and functions
  • All fields are text formatted, which means once you know how to output one custom field, you can output them all.
  • Most plugins are already compatible with Custom Fields.

Cons:

  • Queries with custom fields can be complex and convoluted. Sometimes you will need a “Custom Select Query” in order to accomplish your task.
  • All fields are in LONGTEXT format, which means the database will be larger than it needs to be and this could put limits on the scalability of your site
  • End User support is still limited. The WordPress Dashboard, even with the mentioned plugins, is not fully customizable.

Comparison between these two can also be found here [Pods Vs Custom Post Types].

You have now understood advantages and disadvantages of both type. Its completely upon you which fits your requirement and with which you are comfortable.

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