Drupal is an open source PHP content management system (CMS) that runs SQL databases. As one of the more powerful CMS choices, Drupal can be used for very large and very extensive sites, while still being effective for smaller sites as well. Drupal is a great choice if you have plans for your site to grow and offers all the room and tools you need for expansion as your site gets larger.
We have tested several different content management systems and Drupal is the best one we have found for larger sites. The code is very well written and developed and the Drupal community is very active, intelligent, professional and up to date on the latest developments and technology. Many of the content management systems we tested were very buggy and had very little support or development. Drupal has a large enough community that it gets developed at a good rate and gets the attention it needs to stay current, but the community is still small enough that it stays professional and organized.
Most of Drupal’s power comes from its customizable and flexible design capabilities. It gives a designer the power to create many different layouts and page styles within the same site. You can display different menus, information blocks and graphics on different pages with in the same website. This is a function not handled easily by the average CMS, but Drupal is set up to handle this very well.
Another powerful feature of Drupal is its capability to handle very large databases. There are Drupal sites that have more than 20,000 pages of information. Drupal has a cataloging system called Taxonomy that is very powerful and allows a person to organize massive volumes of information. This is a great tool for sites that need to grow large because one of the difficulties of maintaining large sites is organizing information so that it can be easily found and used.
Another factor that is important to us that Drupal offers is a large variety of free, quality themes. There are hundreds of very nice, well laid out and designed themes that people can choose from. Themes are the design that makes the site look nice and uniform. Making custom themes takes many hours of work and can be cost prohibitive to clients so it is nice to have the option of a pre-designed theme for free. Drupal sites are also laid out so they can be customized in many different ways to suit your specific design needs. You can arrange logos, custom colors and graphics in a variety of ways that will make your site look just the way you want it to.
Another reason we like Drupal is that it has several great modules, which are programs that can be attached to your site such as shopping carts, image galleries and various other useful tools. These modules are created by the open source Drupal community and there are many very talented programmers turning out top notch modules for Drupal at minimal or no charge to Drupal users.
Drupal is more difficult to edit and maintain than Wordpress, but is worth the extra effort if you are planning a site with considerable amounts of data or expect your site to grow very large over the next few years. Drupal is an extremely powerful program with much to offer.