The 9th annual TC Drupal Camp (“TCDC”) took place earlier this month (June 6-8th), and I was once again “on the scene” for this great regional conference.
Around 200 people convened in downtown Minneapolis in June for great sessions, keynote, training, networking and socializing during a beautiful and sunny week in Minnesota.
As one of the core volunteer organizers, I got to work alongside some great community members and really get a close up view of all that took place. So for those who missed it, let’s recap the conference!
Our normally scheduled call to chat about all things Drupal and nonprofits will happen this Thursday, June 20, at 1pm ET / 10am PT. (Convert to your local time zone.)
Feel free to share your thoughts and discussion points ahead of time in our collaborative Google doc: https://nten.org/drupal/notes
We have an hour to chat so bring your best Drupal topics and let's do this thing!
Some examples to get your mind firing: how do I recreate [feature] on my Drupal 7 site in Drupal 8? I need to explain [complicated thing] to a non-technical stakeholder -- any advice? How can I get Drupal and my CRM to play nicely?
This free call is sponsored by NTEN.org but open to everyone.
- Join the call: https://www.uberconference.com/ntencommunity
- Optional dial in number: (866) 853-1888
- Alternate number: (720) 689-1432
- Follow along on Google Docs: https://nten.org/drupal/notes
- Follow along on Twitter: #npdrupal
Drupal is lucky to benefit from a very active community of developers meaning that there is a wide and varied range of contributed modules to extend the functionality of Drupal core. In this article we’ll take a quick look at 10 interesting contributed modules; some are well known whilst others are a little bit more obscure.1. Admin_menu (D7) / Admin_toolbar (D8)
Out of the box the Drupal admin interface can be a bit unwieldy and whilst this has been significantly improved over the years, especially with the advent of Drupal 8, there’s still room for improvement. Enter admin_menu/admin_toolbar which are two similar modules to make navigating the admin interface a whole lot easier by providing a neat little toolbar with drop downs so you can navigate the whole admin interface from any page of your site.2. Kraken
This module allows you to use the kraken.io web service to optimise images on your website. It works be exposing a kraken optimise image style effect which can be applied to image styles on your Drupal website.3. Popup_field_group
This is a nice little module maintained by ComputerMinds which gives the option to display the children of a field group in a popup overlay. Buttons are exposed to toggle the popup.4. Flood_unblock
Drupal 7 introduced a feature to prevent brute force attacks meaning that no more than five failed login attempts per user in any six hour period or no more than 50 failed attempts from an IP address in a one hour period are allowed. Failed login attempts are recorded in the flood table and this module gives administrators an easy way to unblock users that have exceeded these limits.5. Paragraphs
Paragraphs give much greater control over content creation on your Drupal site. A paragraph is a set of fields which has its own theme associated with it to give much greater flexibility over how content gets rendered on your site. So for example you might have a paragraph which floats an image left and displays text on the right - the possibilities are endless. Take a look at tiles in action to find out more about working with paragraphs (we use the term tiles to mean the same thing!)6. Stage_file_proxy
This module is useful when working on a development version of your Drupal site by providing a proxy to the production site’s files directory. When you need a production file the module maps this the production files directory and downloads it to your development files directory.7. Field_display_label
This is a nice little module to allow you to change a field label on the edit form so that it’s difference to what’s rendered when the field is displayed. So for example you might have a name field labelled ‘what’s your name?’ on the edit form which just renders ‘name’ when it’s displayed.8. Custom_add_another
Another simple module maintained by ComputerMinds which gives site admins the ability to customise the ‘add another’ text for multi valued fields.9. Notice_killer
This is a nice little module that will split out PHP notices and warnings from other Drupal notices and also logs a bit more information about each so that you can track them down and fix them more easily.10. Rabbit_hole
This is a useful module that prevents certain entities from being viewable on their own page. So for example if you have an image content type which you never want to be accessible on node/xx then this is the module for you!
Today, we released a new version of Acquia Lift, our web personalization tool.
In today's world, personalization has become central to the most successful customer experiences. Most organizations know that personalization is no longer optional, but have put it off because it can be too difficult. The new Acquia Lift solves that problem.
While before, Acquia Lift may have taken a degree of fine-tuning from a developer, the new version simplifies how marketers create and launch website personalization. With the new version, anyone can point, click and personalize content without any code.
We started working on the new version of Acquia Lift in early 2018, well over a year ago. In the process we interviewed over 50 customers, redesigned the user interface and workflows, and added various new capabilities to make it easier for marketers to run website personalization campaigns. And today, at our European customer conference, Acquia Engage London, we released the new Acquia Lift to the public.
You can see all of the new features in action in this 5-minute Acquia Lift demo video:
The new Acquia Lift offers the best web personalization solution in Acquia's history, and definitely the best tool for Drupal.
Agiledrop.com Blog: Interview with Mario Hernandez of Mediacurrent: Contributing to Drupal through workshops and training
Meet Mario Hernandez, Senior Frontend Developer at Mediacurrent. With over 10 years of experience in Drupal, Mario has seen the CMS evolve significantly throughout the years. Find out more about some of Mediacurrent's most interesting projects and what aspect of his work Mario enjoys the most.READ MORE
Mediacurrent is proud to announce the launch of our new podcast with the release of our pilot episode. Open Waters is a podcast exploring the intersection of open source technology and digital marketing. It’s made especially for CMO's, Directors and Managers of Marketing, technology, and digital strategy.Our Purpose
We think open source is an ocean of opportunity to maximize your martech investment.
We encourage you to listen and learn about using open source technology and forward thinking marketing strategy to generate and convert leads, improve security, increase speed to market, and identify the ROI of your digital investments. Our goal is to educate about the challenges and solutions we see with our own clients and in the market.Welcome to Open Waters - Episode 0
Dive in to our pilot episode!
In this episode:
- New format, shorter but more frequent episode release schedule.
- We're taking a different direction from our Mediacurrent Dropcast, no longer focused strictly on Drupal. Instead, we will be talking about the business benefits of open source software.
- We are going to change up some sections. A little less news, and more about solutions.
- We will probably still do the Pro Project pick from our Dropcast
- Ben Robertson, who presented at the GatsbyJS Days conference in December, will join us to talk about the benefits of Gatsby JS.
- Mario Hernandez will be on the podcast to talk about our upcoming expanded training for components.
- We’ll have an episode to talk about how to choose a CMS, whether it’s Drupal, WordPress, or any of the other bazillion options.
- Bob Kepford, you may have heard of him, will be on to talk about serverless 101 and the problems it can solve.
- We will have Jason Lengstorf from Gatsby on to talk about the project.
- And much, much more.
New episodes will be released tri-weekly on Tuesdays.How Can I Support the Show?
Subscribe, leave a review, and share about us on social media with the hashtag #openwaterspodcast. Have an idea for a topic? Tweet at our hosts Mark Casias, Bob Kepford, and Mario Hernandez. Be sure to subscribe in your favorite podcast platform. Links to follow.
As we do every year, videos of all the 2019 Twin Cities Drupal Camp sessions are now available on our YouTube channel. Special thanks to Kevin Thull for recording and publishing them all!
Watch the videos online for free, and be sure to follow @tcdrupal on Twitter for updates in the future.
Run Simple test cases from terminal via Docker commandsheykarthikwithu Monday, 17 June 2019 - 14:18:28 IST
This year's edition of Drupal North has come to an end and what a great experience it has been. We got to connect with so many people in the community, share our experiences, and learn from others. Here are some of the highlights and key takeaways from the last 3 days:Accessibility really is on the top of everyone's minds
Throughout the conference, there were so many conversations about accessibility -- from best practices, to the future of accessibility tools and websites. With the passing of Bill C-81, government and higher education institutions in Canada will need to make this a top priority as their websites will need to be compliant with Level AA WCAG standards. Those using Drupal will already be 1 step ahead as it is more accessibility-friendly than other content management platforms.Just like Drupal, the Drupal North community values openness
The people that make up the Drupal community are always willing to share tips, tools, information, and what processes work best for them. Some of the attendees we spoke with specifically said they were excited to implement some of the techniques and tools that were discussed at Drupal North. This is a community of learners and innovators, always striving to move the web forward.We are a group of problem-solvers
Some of the most valuable conversations this week were held when attendees were encouraged to share problems they've been encountering and ask the community for ideas and suggestions. The roundtable breakouts at the summits were great for brainstorming and connecting with others having similar issues, and lots of great feedback and input was shared during the Interactive UX Workshop that Alex Dergachev and I hosted.
We hope everyone had a great time at Drupal North 2019 and we are very proud to have been a Gold Sponsor for this year's conference. Keep following along with us on LinkedIn and Twitter, stay up-to-date on future trainings and UX Meetups, and reach out to us if you want to talk Drupal.+ more awesome articles by Evolving Web
Drupal will be represented again at this year's O'Reilly Open Source Convention (OSCON) in Portland, OR in July. We'll have table P8 in the exhibit hall. If you're attending, make sure to visit our table on Wednesday / Thursday.
Community volunteers and local Drupal Association staff members will be at OSCON to talk about Drupal with attendees. We're looking forward to spreading the Drupal love!
If you'd like to help out, please contact me.
Dates: July 15-18
Location: Oregon Convention Center
Register here and use code USRG to save 25% off most registration types.
In April 2018 at DrupalCon Nashville, Dries and then-Executive Director of the Drupal Association Megan Sanicki announced the launch of an initiative to help promote Drupal in the marketplace. This initiative was designed for agencies worldwide, offering marketing and sales support that unifies the Drupal brand and provides standardized materials that can be customized to each user's needs.
The fundraising goal for this initiative was $100,000, and we committed to starting work once we hit the $75,000 mark. In summer 2018 we reached $76,000 in funding and outlined the first phases of work we would complete with these funds. That funding was utilized and those first phases completed in Spring of 2019. We’ll talk about what was accomplished here, and what comes next for the Promote Drupal program.Purpose (as stated in previous posts)
One of the Drupal Association goals is to grow adoption of Drupal. The audience for Drupal is broad and varied, as are the decision-makers choosing to adopt Drupal, as well as the people and agencies selling Drupal services.
Our enterprise market competition has deep pockets for product marketing and heavy sales support. Even our mid-market open source competition’s marketing is heavily backed by corporate funding.
So how can the Drupal Association help grow adoption of the product, across such a diverse market, with our limited budget? It won’t be easy, and it won’t be perfect for everyone, but an ideal outcome will create a source for standardized Drupal materials and stories that the worldwide community can use in their own regions to promote Drupal to new audiences and grow adoption.
To that end, this initiative is focused on creating materials targeted to the decision-makers who choose to adopt Drupal for business; specifically, for marketing decision-makers—the audience most underserved in current materials.What we've accomplished
The Promote Drupal Initiative was designed in four phases:
- Phase 1: Update Drupal's brand and strategic messaging to connect with new decision-makers and influencers
- Phase 2: Provide sales and marketing materials that everyone can use (and translate!)
- Phase 3: Coordinate PR campaigns
- Phase 4: Create "marketing campaigns in a box" to support localized ad and industry event marketing
This fundraising campaign supported Phase 1 & 2.
In the past 10 months, we've moved forward on the following deliverables:
Create Drupal brand bookComplete Found here Building an open source marketing infrastructure for collaborative projects - and governance to guide its use. Complete You can join here Create a "Why Drupal?" Video for widespread use Complete Video here
Distributing press releases as they come up - sharing finished releases with international regional associations for translating and sharing in their own communitiesComplete Found here Create Drupal Pitch Deck: More about it—and how you can use it Complete Found here
Redesigning the submission process and template for case studies and how they are selected as Drupal business case studies—and using these for general Drupal brand collateralNear completion This is in final development and will be launched in August.
Phase IISet a roadmap for the most-needed marketing and sales materials in the community Complete Work found here
Begin implementing that roadmap through the online community interfaceComplete Work found here Redesign home page of drupal.org to be persona-focused Complete https://www.drupal.org/home
Continue pushing press releases and media recognitionComplete Found here Have "Why Drupal" Video available in different languages German translation complete Here Complete a Competitive Comparison Chart In Progress Work found here Drupal in the Enterprise: Integration with other Digital tools/solutions In Progress Work found here Infographic(s): Number of sites using Drupal, other stats about Drupal usage In Progress Work found here Drupal and Future Technologies: Drupal integration with AI, data science, etc. Not yet launched Idea found here Video interviews of companies using Drupal Not yet launched Idea found here This work is important
We see this initiative as an important way to support agencies in building new business, and creating a unified brand for Drupal worldwide. By understanding Drupal and its capabilities - particularly as the shift to Drupal 9 will be happening in 2020 - we aim to educate the curious regarding the vast ecosystem of Drupal's digital marketing technology and other business applications.Funding & moving forward
The idea of the initiative was to be a combination of self-sustaining community contribution - much like the code developed for Drupal - and partially an ongoing program supported by the Drupal Association, assuming funding to pay staff to support the work.
Now that the initial funding is done, the Association plans to continue hosting Promote Drupal meetings, and to help guide the process for those participating until a plan is in place for future funding of this work.Promote Drupal needs your support
In order for the work to continue we are asking for community support.
If you own an agency, please consider allocating some of your marketing team's time toward the Promote Drupal Initiative to move it forward. You do not need to reach out to Drupal Association staff directly for this to happen - you can simply have your team members join the meetings and participate in the work. We invite you to view projects in progress and see where you can lend your expertise and time.
One element of work that would be particularly useful is to have the "Try Drupal" video translated into languages beyond English and German. Likewise, the additional materials listed above would have further reach worldwide if translated.
Another opportunity is to add your materials to the Promote Drupal Pitch Deck (a.k.a. "Drupal in the Wild"); see the process here.Thank you!
On behalf of the Drupal Association, we extend a big thanks to the original sponsors of the Promote Drupal Project—more than 50 agencies, as seen here. We also have a shout out to individual contributors; thanks to all 54 Team Members.
It is our hope that the community engages in this initiative in a way that helps sustain its momentum and continue producing meaningful content for the Drupal community.
What’s the one big challenge that marketers and CMO’s we partner with are facing this year? It’s really tough to put a finger on just one. Proving impact on revenue, marketing team staffing, personalization, and marketing-IT alignment are among the hurdles voiced in discussions that Mediacurrent’s sales team are having with prospects and clients. We are finding CMO’s are pressed more than ever to show marketing’s value while the complexities and opportunities sprouting within digital continue to evolve. Let’s dive into each challenge and uncover what makes these hurdles difficult to jump — and the tools or approach that can help marketers overcome them.Proving Impact on Revenue
Probably not surprising that last year Gartner surveyed where CMOs were spending marketing budgets. They found marketing budgets shrunk slightly year over year since 2016 while a higher percentage of budgets are being allocated to digital. The pressure is on for marketers to prove how specific marketing campaigns and investments directly contribute to an organization’s revenue. Owners and shareholders want more specificity in understanding how much budget to allocate to higher revenue generating activities. Furthermore, marketers need to react faster to fluctuating market conditions that impact customer experience.
How can you attribute revenue to specific marketing activities and demonstrate ROI so you can invest and optimize in the right activities? There are a number of SaaS tools available and most implement a specific approach to measure marketing attribution and achieve granular ROI tracking.
- Motomo - offers a GPL-licensed on-premise web analytics stack.
- Bizible - analytics and multi-touch revenue attribution.
- Terminus / Brightfunnel - product suite that offers account-based marketing analytics and sales insights.
- Conversion Logic - cross-channel attribution with AI-powered insights and budget forecast simulations.
- Allocadia - a marketing performance management platform that offers revenue attribution and insights into marketing budget allocation.
- Full Circle Insights - product stack that tracks marketing and sales attribution, built as a native Salesforce App.
- Google Attribution - formerly called Adometry, it’s now part of the Google Marketing Platform.
- Salesforce CRM - ROI tracking can be enabled with additional campaign configuration.
- Domo Digital 360 - full suite of analytics, funnel, and ROI tracking.
- VisualIQ - strategic measurement, multi-touch attribution, audience analysis, and predictive insights.
- Oracle Marketing Cloud - integrated suite of tools that include analytics, marketing automation, content/social marketing, and data management.
Because each tool specializes in a specific aspect of ROI tracking, you will need to do some research to understand which tool best fits your organization. Most of the tools listed above implement some form of attribution tracking that will help achieve more robust ROI calculations. Our Director of Marketing Adam Kirby gives a helpful overview of how marketing attribution works, in his MarTech West slide deck. Organizations we speak with often need help from consultants and agencies to understand how to optimally configure their martech stack with ROI tracking tools. This need coincidentally brings us to the next challenge marketer’s are facing...Staffing Teams - The Right Blend
Organizations are becoming more careful to find the proper balance between internal team staffing and engaging help from an outside agency. In the early 2010’s, there was a movement within Fortune 2000 companies to bring more expertise in-house. As martech complexity evolved into the latter part of this decade, organizations are realizing that exposure to new technologies and approaches is limited with their in-house teams. By engaging with a wide spectrum of industries, clients, and projects, agencies provide a broad view into the martech landscape that in-house teams don’t have. What’s the right blend? It depends on the vertical. Organizations with one large website typically outsource at least half of their digital marketing. Higher Ed and Government have longer procurement cycles and, consequently, need at least 75% of their overall marketing team to be full-time in-house.
Not only is outside help needed by in-house teams to stay informed, budget scrutiny is forcing CMO’s to seek off-shore development help. However, they are finding off-shore falters when technology projects aren’t being led by one or more on-shore architects who maintain a project’s integrity between on-shore stakeholders and off-shore teams. These technical liaisons are critical to off-shore development success. We see too many organizations assume if off-shore developers demonstrate technical competency, they should be fully capable of leading an implementation. Yet, those organizations fail to consider the strength of influence local culture has on communication dynamics and the perception of requirements by off-shore teams.Personalization
Another challenge marketers are targeting is how personalization can impact KPIs and produce a higher ROI percentage compared to other digital marketing efforts. In 2017, the concept of personalization was buzzing while marketers were trying to understand what it takes from a content and labor effect to implement. After GDPR went into effect a little over a year ago, personalization efforts have to take into account how GDPR laws impact customer data acquisition and retention, making the implementation of personalization trickier and more complex with respect to data analysis and the ability to capitalize on personalization opportunities. Tools like Acquia Lift, open source marketing automation platform Mautic (recently acquired by Acquia), Triblio, and Optimizely Web Personalization offer slightly different perspectives on personalization.
When evaluating if you’re ready for personalization, here are eight considerations that will dictate success when carefully planned or potential failure if not addressed:
- Do you have enough content that’s written for each persona your personalization effort needs to target?
- Do you have content creators who can continually create new and evergreen content?
- Do you have KPIs defined to track the performance of your personalization efforts?
- Is your martech stack compatible with personalization technologies that fit your business model?
- Do accurate, fresh data metrics exist in usable forms? Is data structured uniformly and exclusive of redundancies that might skew its meaning?
- How do data privacy laws impact the efficacy of a personalization initiative? Can enough of the right user data legally be captured to supply the initiative?
- Are data governance guidelines in place that ensure data integrity stays intact well beyond the implementation phase of a personalization initiative?
- Finally, is your department or organization committed to investing time and energy into personalization? It’s a long game and shouldn’t be misinterpreted as an off-the-shelf-set-it-and-forget-it type of content solution.
If you’re starting a personalization strategy from ground zero, Mediacurrent Senior Digital Strategist Danielle Barthelemy wrote a quick guide to creating a content strategy with personalization as the end-goal. Danielle illustrates how a sound personalization strategy positively influences purchase intent, response rate, and acquisition costs.Marketing-IT Alignment
In order for digital marketing execution to be as effective and efficient as possible with initiatives like ROI tracking and personalization, it’s imperative for marketing and IT teams to collaborate cohesively. A frictionless environment is critical for marketers to meet the immediacy of an ever-increasing market speed. In some organizations, these two departments are still maintaining competing interests in relation to policy, security, infrastructure, and budget. Example scenarios include strict IT policies that can stifle speed-to-market, cowboy marketers all but ignoring technical security when implementing new tools, and executives missing the budgetary discord that echoes when both departments operate in their own silos.
These independent agendas must be meshed together into one for the betterment of the organization. But how?
- Learn how to empathize by understanding each other’s goals and challenges across departments. Define a shared list of KPI’s and time-bound each.
- Schedule weekly touch point meetings between IT and marketing leaders.
- Conduct a quarterly tools review to understand the “why” behind tools that each department uses.
- Demonstrate discipline-specific concepts that require collaboration from the other department. For instance, show IT how marketing attribution works and what’s required of them to make it successful. Or, show marketing what a normalized database is and how it will help marketing be successful by reducing duplicate data.
Overall, the challenges CMO’s are asking us about as we move into the latter half of 2019 are heavily rooted in accurately tracking ROI and putting tools in place to boost it. While marketers have been challenged with proving ROI for years, digital has evolved to a point where tools and systems exist that embolden marketers to aggressively pursue understanding where their money is best spent. For most organizations, there are still talent hurdles to overcome and knowledge gaps to fill to properly implement martech and systems that accurately track ROI.
How about you — what challenges are your marketing department working to solve this year? Have you found the right in-house to agency team blend? Have you had success with ROI tracking and personalization?
A lot of buzz around “Decoupled Drupal” is taking place and it has quickly become ubiquitous in the industry. Drupal has won hearts by embracing the newest of technology and presenting the best of possibilities. The full separation of the structure from the content has aided the content management systems with appropriate means to accelerate the pace of innovation.
In this blog, we will address some loaded questions of what, why and when of Decoupled Drupal for you.Decoupled Drupal Is For You
Rendering a separate framework for front-end and back-end content management experience, Decoupled Drupal provides for a content presentation that is completely devoid of the content management. It is also known as ‘Headless Drupal’, where the head refers to the front-end rendering or the presentation of the content and the ‘body’ attributes to the backend storage.Addressing the 3 Ws: Why, What, When
In this section, we will take one head at a time and examine the core functionalities of Decoupled (Headless) Drupal.Why Decoupled?
Being a flexible framework for developing websites, web/native apps and similar digital products, Decoupled Drupal allows for designers and front-end developers to build without limitations. As an organisation you can leverage a decoupled approach for progressive web apps, and native apps. Decoupled Drupal has created a noise in the community with its divide and conquer development strategy.What’s your Intention?
Your intentions always determine the outcome, i.e., how your product will be built with the Decoupled Drupal. For the developers working on it, here are a few scenarios and their outcomes:
- In case of standalone websites/applications, decoupled Drupal might not be a wise choice.
- For multiple web applications and websites, decoupled Drupal can be leveraged in two different ways.
- When building non-web native apps, you can employ decoupled Drupal to attain a content repository without its own public-facing front end.
Once the intentions are clear, the next step is to see if it can be executed given a proper apparatus. Here are a few questions that should influence your decision to choose decoupled Drupal:
- Is it right for your project and your team?
- Do you have a strong grasp on your data needs?
- Evaluate if your current hosting provider can support this architecture
- Are you prepared to handle the complexity of serving content to multiple clients?
- Do the URL alias values have a unique identifier that makes API requests easy?
- Can your metadata logic power meta tags, JSON-LD, analytics to be generated with standardised rules?
- Where are menus created, ordered, and managed?
- Do you have an architecture that supports combining multiple redirect rules into a single redirect?
By now we have established enough facts that Decoupled Drupal is a package full of advantages. It’s time to delve deeper and seek the accuracy of circumstances in which it can be put into effect:Decoupled Drupal allows for designers and front-end developers to build without limitations Resources
Progressively decoupling the Drupal requires a separate development of the backend and front-end and thus, separate resources are a mandate. Two individually capable teams that can collaborate and support makes for a successful decoupled Drupal.Multiple Channels
The faculty of publishing content and data across platforms and products can affect the way you become headless.Applicable Content
Sometimes, a rich interface and built-in features can hinder the work. Even Drupal’s flexible content model to store content requires a different interface for adding and managing that content in some cases.When Not to Decouple
Inversely, it is equally important to know what situations might not be healthy for a decoupled Drupal to thrive. Gauge these possibilities to rule out situations/project:
- Drupal has the advantage to leverage a huge pile of free modules from the open source community. But with the decoupled Drupal, the ability to easily “turn-on” the front-end functionality goes out of the window. The separate content management system eliminates this likelihood of managing your website front-end directly.
- Drupal’s front-end proficiency should align with your front-end requirement. Absence of a systematic match can land your decoupled dream in doubts.
There’s no confusion about the abilities of Decoupled Drupal. It’s your business requirements that should fit in like a puzzle with the headless architecture. With necessary technical leadership skills and expertise in this web infrastructure, you can sail your decoupling aspirations to the other end.
And do not forget to share more ideas at firstname.lastname@example.org banner blog image Progressively decoupled Decoupled Drupal Progressively decoupled Drupal Decoupled CMS User Interface Drupal scalability Blog Type Articles Is it a good read ? On
Another successful day at Drupal North is now complete! This day was packed with sessions from all kinds of speakers, including our very own Jigar Mehta and Robert Ngo. Some great discussions were had amongst the Drupal community which was out in full force. Here are some of the ideas that we saw repeated throughout the day:Content must be modular
Making your content modular allows you to easily plug it into any new type of channel. There's no need for you to start from scratch just because you're creating something for a different platform or user base. And, if you keep this content in a centralized hub, all users have access to the most accurate and up-to-date versions.Plan out where you're going in the initial design phase
Knowing where you're going makes it that much easier to get there. You need to start with solid components so you don't have to go back later on and make constant revisions. A detailed plan allows you to take advantage of UI Patterns that will save you time and headaches in the future.More and more people actually know about Drupal
Years ago, many within the Drupal community would have to explain to people what Drupal, and even open-source was. This made the task of convincing them to switch to a Drupal site even harder. Now, executives and decision-makers will have often already heard of Drupal and just need to be convinced of what value YOU can bring to them.Accessibility is key
The web is for everyone and that means your website needs to be accessible for everyone. It's also important to maintain this accessibility; technology is always improving so just because your site was accessible when you launched it 3 years ago, doesn't mean it is today. And when you conduct user tests, try and recruit diverse participants in order to get more inclusive results.Drupalers love basketball!
To wrap up the day, conference attendees went to the after party to catch game 6 of the NBA Finals -- GO RAPTORS!
Just one more day left of Drupal North and we hope you've been making the most of it! Make sure you're following along with us on LinkedIn and Twitter, and check out the rest of our daily recaps on this blog.+ more awesome articles by Evolving Web
You’ve decided it’s time to rebuild your website. Research has been done, conversion rates have been analyzed, the team has selected a rebuild over a focused fix, and you and your team are committed to making this happen. One of the easiest ways of ensuring your success is to remain mindful of a few key things as you work your way through this larger process.
Regarding that term, “mindful:” one of the Kanopi team’s favorite authors is Brené Brown. She writes, “Mindfulness requires that we not “over-identify” with thoughts and feelings so that we are not caught up and swept away by negativity.” For the purposes of your website rebuild, I’d adapt this to be, “Mindfulness requires that we not “over-focus” on what we’ve done before, and rather remain aware of what’s important for our success so that we can focus on where we want to be.”
So, let’s get to it and break down what the top five things we need to be mindful of when executing a rebuild project.1. YOU are the difference! Be engaged.
Stakeholder engagement can make or break a rebuild. But rebuilds are time-consuming, and you and your stakeholders will likely be pulled in several directions as you try to execute a rebuild while balancing other priorities and projects.
Your availability, open communication, and timely feedback is critical to enable your team to create the web presence your organization needs to reach its goals. Be realistic in what time your team can devote to the project so you can be as fully engaged as possible. Define roles and responsibilities early as well so it’s clear who is handling what.
If you need an assist from an outside agency to keep the project moving quicker, be direct with them about your business needs and wants. Help them to understand your users and audiences. An agency will make every effort to dive deeply into understanding your market, but at the end of the day, you and your team are the experts on what you do. So view any outside agency as a partner who can work with you towards success, and stay engaged with them throughout the process.2. Define success & track it
We cannot know if we’re successful until we have identified what success will look like. For some sites, it’s simply exposure. For others, it’s a need to meet specific goals. Take the time to define what your organization needs to achieve, and which key metrics will allow us to quantify success.
Not sure where to start? Here are common metrics should you benchmark now as you prepare for the rebuild:
- Users: note how many users are regularly coming to your site
- Bounce Rate: record the overall bounce rate. Make note if this is at, above or below your industry’s standard.
- Average Session Duration: how long are users staying on your page?
- Sessions by Channel: where are your users coming from? How much organic traffic is coming in?
- Top Keywords: identify what words are being used in the search engines when users are finding you. Are these surprising?
- Competitor Keywords: are users who are looking at your competitors using the same keywords?
- Top Referrers: who is sending traffic to your site? Maybe social media is key, or you’re more focused on industry referrals. Determine where you should be in the market.
- Conversion Rates: what forms do you need users to fill out? What conversions are critical to your business goals? These can take the form of contact or forms from your CRM tools such as Marketo or Pardot, or even visits to a specific page or video views.
- Accessibility: does your site meet national or international compliance standards?
In short, benchmark where you are now, and use this data to help round out that definition of success. Then come back a few months after launch to reevaluate and compare so you can quantify the success to your stakeholders.3. Get your content strategy in order
The old saying “Content is King” is truer today than ever. Users are more educated. Search engines have become smarter, looking for more than keywords — they look for meaning in phrases to help determine the focus of a given page.
As one of the most effective methods of growing audience engagement, developing your brand presence, and driving sales, content marketing is a mission-critical growth method for most businesses. — Hubspot
This is where most people turn to me and tell me they’ll get their team on it so they can move further along in the content process. But don’t underestimate the time and energy content development/aggregation can take, even if your larger project is hiring a copywriter to augment your team. All too often, when content becomes a late-stage endeavor a few things happen:
- timelines get pushed out, waiting for content to be approved.
- changes to the previous UX are often required to account for unrealized navigation or calls to action, causing potential budget overages.
- content is rushed and not in alignment with the overall vision.
To help this process come together for your team, here are a few action items to start with:
- Audit your content: take a full inventory of your site’s content to better identify:
- what to keep
- what to repurpose
- for example: the video may look dated, but could your team could write a blog post from that material?
- what should not be migrated to your new site
- this can be archived to be referenced at a later date
- Build a sitemap: determine the hierarchy of the content on the new site.
- Identify missing content: comparing your audit to your sitemap, what needs to be produced?
- Track content creation: track who is responsible for writing, editing and approving content — and give them deadlines
- Start thinking ahead: you may need to start planning future content. Developing an editorial calendar will help keep the process moving. Content typically included in an editorial calendar:
- blog posts
- social media posts
When preparing for a rebuild, your content strategy has to be one of the first things your team takes on. This approach will save you time, headaches, and likely budget moving forward.4. Consider your users’ digital experience
By this stage in the process you should know your target market, their buying habits and why your product or service is of value to them. You likely have personas and other data to help back this up. But in the omnichannel world in which we thrive, there is often more to architecting an effective user journey. Understanding the nuances of the devices, the influence of how a user comes to your site, and the overall adherence to best practices are complex. For example, consider the following:
- What percentage of users are coming from mobile devices?
- Are you CTAs and main conversion points easy to access on a small screen?
- Is the user journey simplified?
- Are you users coming from social media?
- Is it your blog driving traffic or more word of mouth?
- Is it positive or negative attention?
- Have you produced a user journey map to identify the different pathways to conversion?
- Is your site currently set up to promote these journeys?
- Are you utilizing personalization to customize that user journey?
You can learn more about how to use user research to gain insight into audience behavior to help you frame your thoughts about your personas overall user journey to conversion.5. Think about the future of your site
Websites need to evolve and adapt as the needs of your users change over time, but as you rebuild, are you setting yourself up for more incremental changes moving forward? Keep in mind that most rebuilds are focused on the MLP or “Minimum Lovable Product.” It’s the simplest iteration of your site that will meet your current needs with the intent to continually improve it over time. Regardless of whether you’re focused on an MLP launch due to either time or budget constraints, we need to keep these future goals in mind as we progress.
And then there’s the technology side of this: whether you’re looking ahead to Drupal 8 or 9 or the next major evolution with WordPress, consider those needs now to help ‘future proof’ your new site. The web changes too quickly to risk your site being stale when it’s still brand new. Talk this through from the start with your team.These steps will set you up for success.
Your site speaks to who you are as an organization to your target market. Whether you’re a non-profit, higher education or a corporate entity, being mindful now will set your team’s rebuild up for success. And if you need help with your rebuild, contact us. We’d love to partner with you and help you recognize that success.
The post 5 Things to Consider When Executing a Website Rebuild appeared first on Kanopi Studios.
Just when you think Drupal couldn’t get any dumber, it goes and adds some great new features….. And TOTALLY redeems itself!
Released back in November of 2015, Drupal 8 has been slowly but steadily upping its game.
In case you’ve been lost in a jungle for the past couple of years, or maybe you just don’t keep up with that kind of thing, we’ve got you covered.
Here are just some of the things Drupal 8 and soon to be Drupal 9 have us jumping around like crazy apes about.