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WordPress Vs Drupal Vs Joomla – Which Open Source CMS is right for you?

August 1st, 2011 2 comments

At DzineClub we work with multiple CMS platforms to make sure that we are in touch with all the latest technologies. We have dedicated staff who work with platforms such as Magento, Joomla, Drupal and WordPress.

Our CMS of choice is WordPress (for websites) and Magento Commerce (for Online stores) and it consists of our bigger team of development. The reasons we pick WordPress  and Magento is because these platforms are easier to install, develop, deploy and improve on.

This means that as a client you get speedier development, lower total cost of ownership, Quicker updates and integrations. If you need a design refresh in a few months, you don’t have to worry about the content, it will just be a matter of putting a new skin on top.

That, a CMS that is a perfect fit today might not be the best in a few years. This was the case with Joomla a few years ago and now WordPress has taken the crown from our prespective.

Some of the things we look for in a CMS before developing are:

  • How easy it is to install
  • How easy is it to update
  • How easy will it be for the client to use
  • How easy is it to put a skin/theme on top
  • How far can we push the flexibility of the CMS
  • Can the CMS handle meta data and multiple content types (pages, posts, news, whitepapers, images, events, videos)
  • How does the CMS handle SEO straight out of the box
  • How easy is it to integrate new technology onto the platform
  • How does the CMS handle multiple editors and their roles
  • Is there a defined roadmap and will it stick around in the future
  • Is there a good development base and are there lots of users who support this platform
  • What is the security behind the CMS

Based on this, we make a recommendation for a CMS for a client.

We just came across this infograph by the guys at Devious Media on the 3 open source platforms. Our summary follows after the graphic based on the infograph.  Please note that we wont be discussing Joomla as we don’t see a definite future with Joomla.

 

 

Drupal:

  • More used by Heavy/Large Enterprise companies
  • More used by complicated companies
  • Decent Developer community
  • Good Client List

WordPress:

  • Faster Updates
  • Twice as many updates than Drupal/Joomla
  • Twice as many plugins and themes
  • Larger number of developer and user adoption (upto 10 times as much)
  • More social
  • More Cost Effective
  • Lower Total cost of ownership
  • Stronger SEO straight out of the box
  • Easier to learn to use

Summary

We recommend using WordPress for most sites and have worked with a large number of sites where we have customised WordPress to work as per business needs. Please view our list of sites we have customised for WordPress here:

http://www.dzineclub.com/blog/2011/01/wordpress-development-wordpress-design/

WordPress for Medium to Large Clients

We still recommend using WordPress for Medium to Large Clients because of the level of customisation that can be done in WordPress and how quickly it can be changed and new plugins being added. What Drupal can do for such size clients can easily be accommodated using Plugins in WordPress.

WordPress or Drupal for Heavy Enterprise Clients

For sites such as the main Government site, user payments and memberships, forums, connections to ERP platforms, WordPress is probably not the right option right now. The best solution would be to customise Drupal or use a paid CMS Platform. However if you are developing your site in 6 months or a year’s time, WordPress should be a worthy competitor.

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Have you got a website that you are looking at developing and are not sure which CMS is the best to use?

Flick us an email at info@dzineclub.com and we’ll recommend a solution based on our expertise.

DzineClub Digital Services explained

June 16th, 2011 No comments

Since DzineClub looks at end to end services, we always get asked what we really do. The answer is that we believe that it is a whole process and we provide services around everything digital.

Here is a quick graphic that explains all the services we provide:

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Getting New Leads/Prospects/Traffic

We help you get your traffic through SEO, SEM, Facebook Marketing, Linkedin marketing and Email Marketing.

Online Development

We help you engage these leads through a variety of applications and channels including Websites, Online Stores, Mobile Websites, Facebook Apps and Pages and Catalogues

Conversion

We can help you then turn these visitors into leads/customers using Conversion Forms, Shopping Carts and Downloadables. At this point we will also look at cross-sell and up-sell opportunities to maximise your conversion.

Retention

Once the conversion happens, we get into phase 2 where we put Nurturing Programs, surveys and automated emails to help you retain these customers for when they need your products/services at a later stage.

So what is our distribution of Clients

90% of our clients use more than one services from us. Ranging from Online Stores, Websites, Email Marketing, Web Hosting almost all of our clients use multiple services.

Here is how they use us:

DIY Online Store: 10+ Clients
Keyword Rank Checker: 5+ Clients
DzineMail Email Marketing: 15+ Clients
Website Hosting: 25+ Clients
CMS Platforms: 20+ Clients

We will post all the examples of our services over the next week so that you get a better idea of what we offer.

Drupal 7 Thoughts – Example Site

January 8th, 2011 No comments

Drupal – the open source content management solution that powers roughly 1% of all the sites on the internet has just gone live with its new major release Drupal 7.  We just did a test run of the site. Here are some of the things that we noticed:

Drupal 7 Installation

The installation was a breeze and is comparable to the famous WordPress Installation now. We had no issues with the installation and everything looked great.

Drupal 7 - Installation Screen

 

Drupal 7 Admin Panel

The admin panel is very easy to navigate and is clear on how to add content (as a page or an article) on the website. The rest of the page is also very well structured. You can set up blocks from directly within Drupal which gives you more flexibility on how you want your site to look.

Drupal 7 Admin Dashboard - DzineClub Australia

Drupal 7 Themes

Adding and activating themes was very easy. There doesn’t seem to be a lot of settings to change on the themes currently but with time it should improve. For our example site, we have used the Danland Theme pictured below.

DzineClub Drupal 7 Website

Example Drupal 7 Website

We have set up an example Drupal 7 website so that you can play around with the front end.

Please click here to go to the example Drupal 7 website.

Zuccala Homes–CMS Build

November 8th, 2010 No comments

WordPress or No WordPress

We are now building the CMS platform for Zuccala Homes. Initially we were going to go with WordPress but turns out that WordPress is not very suitable because it cannot handle the tables and relationships of the database properly. That said however, we are doing another project where WordPress is the perfect solution for the CMS.

Custom CMS Build for Zuccala Homes

As such we built a custom CMS fro Zuccala Homes.This allows them to upload images, upload brochures, connect house designs to their house and land packages. We have also built all the image templates in Photoshop which they can now use to build promotions etc. themselves. The image is a very draft stage of the CMS which is being finalised right now.

Zuccala Homes CMS

 

Cutting Costs

We are setting up the CMS in a way that allows Zuccala Homes to make changes to most parts of the website so that they can cut down on maintenance costs of the website and use that budget on marketing to drive more visitors to the websites.

Current Online Projects

October 27th, 2010 No comments

DzineClub is a fairly new business so not everyone knows what we do and what we are currently working on. Everyone that we have been talking to is asking what Projects DzineClub is working on currently. So I thought we would put up a list of our projects so that you know what we are working on, our expertise and if you have a similar project in mind.

Home Builders Website – Zuccala Homes

We are currently finalising Zuccala Homes website which is a CMS driven home builder website. The website has a good mix of jquery, flash and social media components. Here is a list of what we are doing with them

  • Custom CMS Implementation
  • Search Engine Optimisation
  • Web Analytics
  • Email Marketing

Recruitment Website – Melbourne

We are currently building a recruitment website for a Recruitment company in Melbourne. The CMS will allow the client to post jobs and use custom advanced pages

  • Custom CMS Implementation
  • Search Engine Optimisation
  • Web Analytics
  • Email Marketing
  • Social Media Strategy

A high profile rapper from California

We are currently doing the whole digital strategy for a rapper in California who is about to launch his debut album.

  • Website Development
  • Search Engine Optimisation
  • Social Media Strategy
  • Email Marketing
  • Selling Songs and Ringtones
  • Merchandise store

Hopefully this gives a basic idea of the projects that we are capable of running. Feel free to reach out on info@dzineclub.com for any questions.

Finalising the site – Zuccala Homes

October 23rd, 2010 No comments

Finalising the website for Zuccala Homes

We are now finalising the Zuccala Homes website. Based on user feedback and customer feedback, we have implemented a lot of changes towards the newer version of the website.

New Changes

The navigation menu has been turned black, the search boxes orange and house and the Google maps from House and land packages has been removed because it wasn’t being used.

A header image that will be the default on all the pages that don’t need flash interactivity has been used to freshen up the look and reflect on the main theme of the page.

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Mobile Friendly Website

With most of the home builders websites, we realised that most of the websites were built in flash so was not accessible from the iPhone. Zuccala Homes Website has been built so that it is mobile friendly and can be accessed just as easily through an iPhone, Android or a Windows Mobile phone.

CMS running behind the Zuccala Homes website

A custom CMS that runs behind the website is being built to allow Zuccala Homes to add new homes, house and land packages and display centres themselves. Next time we will discuss how the CMS works and how it was built.

Using DzineClub CMS to resize and optimise Images

April 18th, 2010 2 comments

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Previously using dzineCMS you had to resize your images on a different software before dropping into the site. For some clients who didn’t have a lot of technical knowledge around image editing, it was a bit of a pain 🙂

Now with time, we have decided to make it easier for those clients and enable optimization and resizing feature in the image gallery.  You can now use the CMS itself to resize your photos that you have imported from your camera and make them web-ready.

If you are using DzineCMS to make changes to the SEO and Content of your sites, here are some instructions on how to resize images using DzineCMS itself.

  1. Log into the dzineCMS system
  2. Upload an image to the image library or select an existing image
  3. Hover your mouse over the image and click on optimise

    This will load up an optimization screen. you can use this screen to make the following changes to your images:

    Basic operations

    – crop the file
    – resize the file
    – Rotate and flip the file

    Adjustments

    – Remove red eyes
    – whiten teeth
    – Automatically adjust levels
    – Adjust brightness and contrast
    – Adjust hue and saturation
    – sharpen the photo
    – blur the photo
    – denoise the photo
    – make the photo black and white
    – invert the photo
    – cross process photos

    You can also use a variety of photo effects.

If you have any issues with resizing images or would like one of our staff to take you through how it is done, please drop us a line at info@dzineclub.com

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Do you currently have a website but no content editing capabilities?

DzineCMS can be a low cost but effective solution that can allow you to make changes to your text, images and SEO content. Contact us at info@dzineclub.com for a demo and to find out how you can implement it for your website.

Resizing Images using Windows Live Photo Gallery

March 7th, 2010 No comments

One of the biggest hurdles we have at DzineClub when it comes to giving clients more access is them not being able to resize images. Usually clients will take photographs using a digital Camera and transfer them to their computer. Usually these images are much larger in dimensions than what is required on the website. So they need to be resized or chopped into a more manageable size. For a long time now this has been a bit of an issue and one of the main causes that a website owner has to use a Developer or a Designer to do odd stuff on their website.

You cannot put the images taken from a camera straight on to a website. Here are some ways how you can resize that image. Depending on what software you have, you can use the appropriate software.

Installing Windows Live Photo Gallery

First you need to have Windows Live Photo Gallery installed on your system. If you do not, please head to http://download.live.com and click on the Download Button. This will start the Windows Live Setup where you can pick Windows Live Photo Gallery to be installed.

Importing Images to Windows Live Photo Gallery

You can import your photos to Windows Live Photo Gallery via two methods.

1. Transfer your photos to your computer using method that you already do. Open up Windows Live Photo Gallery. Click on File > Include a folder in the gallery. Pick the folder where your images are.

2. Start Windows Live Photo Gallery. Click on File> Import from a Camera or Scanner. Select the camera or scanner.

Using Windows Live Photo Gallery to resize images

  • Select all the images that you would like to resize. You can use Shift+Click, Ctrl+Click or drag your mouse around a selection to select multiple sizes.
  • Right Click on any of the photos (while they are selected) and select Resize
  • You will be then given an option to resize (there will be already set presets on the drop down. Usually here you might want to select custom from drop down and put in a dimension.
  • Click on browse to select a folder where you want the resized images to come. Please ensure that you pick a new folder and not the folder where the images are already.
  • Click on resize and save.

This will save the resized images on a specified folder. You can now use these images on your projects or to update your website.

For all you Google Fans, Next time we’ll talk about how you can resize your images using Google Picasa 🙂

CMS (Content Management Systems) for Small and Medium Websites

February 14th, 2010 No comments

What is a CMS?

A  CMS is a content Management System. A CMS allows you to manage your digital content. In terms of websites, a CMS will allow you to manage all your pages, images and documents that form part of your website.

Small And Medium Websites

Small and Medium websites are usually built using static pages. The pages use HTML, Javascript, Flash files etc. The pages are stored on a web server. Usually making changes to HTML requires special knowledge and/or software. A Client is usually not able to go and make a quick change to a spelling mistake, image or add a new product or service easily. Usually the process is to ask your web-developer to make the change and this can be very time consuming and at some cases expensive.

The low-cost solution – A Content Managed Solution

The low-cost solution is to plug in a content management solution on to your site. In a CMS system, you will be able to log in yourself and make changes as you would do to a Word Document. The CMS also allows you to store all your images as assets, so that you can re-use them over time and also allows you to index all your documents, so that you can drop them into the website whenever you please.

This way, you will be able to efficiently cut down on turn around times and costs and make changes to your site quickly.

What features should a decent Content Managed Solution Have?

Depending on your needs and your budget here are some basic functionality any CMS systems should provide

What you Need

  • Change Text on your page, add new text and delete existing text on a page
  • Change images on your page, add new images and delete existing images

What you should want based on your needs

  • Store all your images in a library so that you can pick and drop them in as you choose. This means that you don’t have to upload your images to the site everytime you want to change them
  • Store all your documents (PDFs) in a library, so that your brochures, product whitepapers can be dropped into the website as you please without having a local copy
  • Allow you to make changes to the SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) content of your page so that you can get better visibility on Google
  • Allow you to add new pages to your site, these new pages already have your branding and a link is automatically created for you
  • Search Functionality so that users can now search for things on your site
  • A Backup functionality so that if you mess something up, you can revert back to the original

The power in your hands and advantages

  • You can now update your pages quickly and efficiently and have more control
  • You keep the costs of changing smaller things on site low
  • Your site is more flexible in generating new content
  • You have a library of images and documents that works as a backup and also allows you to drop content on your site quickly

With great power comes great responsibility

There are also some pitfalls on having the power in your hands. Here are some of the things you have to understand

  • Once you make a change and publish the page, it is live for everyone to see. So if you make a spelling mistake it will be on the site. So you have to make sure you have a good approval process
  • You should stick to the colours and branding of your site. Sometimes we see clients putting all sorts of colours and sizes to make the page look more appealing. This can more often than not make the site look less professional. Unless that is your branding, then it’s fine.

The DzineClub Content Management System:

We also provide varying levels of CMS and customisations to our clients. Drop us a line if you are interested.

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