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Just some stuff we thought we'd write about.

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What About Other CMS's?

While there are plenty of other content management systems out there, at Greenstick we prefer to work primarily with Drupal and WordPress. It's not that we don't have experience with other CMS platforms, it's just that from our experience these two in particular remains the easiest to work with and the most powerful for our client needs.

WordPress is in many ways a fairly simple content management system, originally intended to be used as a blogging platform. Over the years it has evolved with the number of plug-ins and core adjustments to make it quite useful for building a variety of sites, galleries and interactive features, and of course remains very intuitive as a platform for writing various types of content as it has since the beginning.

Drupal can be used to build just about any type of online presence, from the simplest of sites to the most complicated of database driven destinations. Countless plug-ins and the architecture with which Drupal is built allows for infinite customization to meet just about any goals. We continue to build more sites with Drupal as the back end than any other CMS platform, normally reserving WordPress as our second favorite for the simplest of projects.

While there are additional open source content management systems that exist (some more popular than others), many of the others don't offer the same power, security, flexibility and support.

Private label content management systems at times do in fact offer quality software, but at the same time have a number of disadvantages not associated with open-source:

The Problems with Private Label CMS's:

There's the expense first and foremost. Independent content management systems can cost anywhere from a few hundred dollars to tens of thousands, with the latter being more common for enterprise-level solutions. While the initial cost may be reasonable for larger organizations, upgrades and other ongoing costs can often continue to inflate the bottom line associated with using these types of frameworks.

While open-source software is meant to be worked with, adjusted and modified - private label software is normally just the opposite. While you may be able to have the company selling the software make specific customizations to meet your needs, generally speaking only their in-house programmers will be able to (and more importantly allowed to) work with the source code. This results in an essential monopoly when it comes to who can program for your web site, and more often than not being stuck with the non-competitive costs associated with it.

Stability and upgrades are another concern. While open-source projects have notoriously long life spans because they are normally built by a community of people rather than a small for-profit team, private label software is much more likely to stop supporting their projects should they be deemed not profitable enough in the future, or other company problems arise.

While much of the software towards the upper end of the price scale has undoubtedly been thoroughly checked by security professionals for possible exploits, open source solutions will always have more field trials than their counterparts just because of the sheer number of users. They may be more likely to be targeted, but problems are quickly found and solved.

With that said, we have and will undoubtedly work again with many of these 'other' CMS's when a client is already comfortable or invested enough in a particular one, but whenever possible we do prefer to stick with our favorites.