Content Management Wars: Why We Choose Drupal

Drupal is Cowley's choice for a CMS system
Jan 23rd, 2013
Topic(s) Covered: Web Design

The debate rages. What content management system is the best? WordPress, Drupal, Joomla? Joomla is fading out in popularity. It’s mainly Drupal and WordPress duking it out at the moment. We at Cowley choose Drupal.

The Learning Curve


WordPress is a good CMS (content management system), don't get me wrong; but it is constraining. You’re forced to use a template and adapt to it instead of creating your own template. This is good if you are starting out in web design. You can get one of the stock templates, make your blog, and be done rather quickly. The learning curve starts out low.


Drupal doesn’t assume anything about your content. You can adapt your theme from scratch and have it look any way you want. The learning curve is higher, but if you put in the time to learn it is much more rewarding.


Piece ‘A Cake!


Think about it this way. You want to make a cake. If you have little baking knowledge, you can get a chocolate cake in a box. It will work great and probably taste great, but it will only be the chocolate cake on the front of the box. If you have some baking knowledge, you can get all the ingredients separately and create any kind of cake you want!



We at Cowley know how to bake, so we use Drupal. Jesse Clayton, our expert graphic designer, can come up with whatever design fits the client; and I can build it in a way so the client can easy continue to update their own website (add a new blog post, service, product, picture, etc.).


There are a lot of reasons Drupal works so well for us. I’ve been asked to keep this digestible, so let’s talk about 3 of the best.

3 Reasons Drupal Works Best


Drupal organizes your content types1. Content types put everything in their place.


Your website has content. Are you showing off your products, services, employees, careers, news, or all of the above? If you think about it, these are all very different pieces of content.



An employee requires different information than a product. For instance, an employee may have a phone number, headshot, email address, and a Linkedin profile link. A product may have a price, category, and maybe even dimensions. Drupal makes it easy to separate this content and give each their correct fields. Then your content editor knows where to go to add an employee and what fields to fill out to make one appear.



Drupal "views" shows your content in multiple ways2. Drupal “views” allow you to show your content anywhere.


The “views” module is intimidating to use when you first start out building Drupal sites. But once you get the hang of it, anything becomes possible. It allows you to show any of the content of the site – in any way you wish.



This feature allows you to show those products in a slideshow, or in a list with shortened descriptions. You can show your employees sorted by years at the company, or only show the ones in a specific department.



The possibilities are pretty much endless and most of the time effortless if you know what you are doing.



Drupal organizes and improves your SEO3. Drupal lets you manage your SEO structure.


Each content type can have its own meta tags and URL structure. For instance, the employee's title tag might include their position, while a product tag would include its category. The URL for an employee could be website/employees/department/employee name, while a product might be products/category/product name, or perhaps just products/product name. It’s up to you to decide. And we know SEO, so we do a pretty good job of deciding.

Conclusion


There are a number of other reasons we use Drupal, but I won’t bore you with all of them. Things like an automatic sitemap, rules, Ubercart, menu blocks – and new modules are being developed every day for free by talented developers. It’s a great community and I am glad to be a part of it.



If your website has become a nightmare to update and organize, give us a call! We'd love to organize your content and give you a Drupal site that is easily updatable, looks great, and is SEO optimized.

About The Author

With a passion for emerging technology and a knack for speaking "code", Chris brings a sophistication and functionality to our clients' websites. Whether it's building from scratch, or enhancing an existing website, Chris' resourcefulness and imagination knows no boundaries.

Able to think outside the box, he determines appropriate architecture and relevant technical solutions on each project, allowing Cowley Associates to successfully execute our client's web strategies.

Chris MacSaveny - Web Developer for Cowley

Chris MacSaveny

Web Developer

315-475-8453 x230

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