Changes In Drupal 8 That are Good For Your business

By: Jim Applebee / 2017-03-17

If you have ever heard a developer say that Drupal is better than other content management systems because of the power, flexibility, and scalability that is found in Drupal core - that has never been more true than it is with Drupal 8. 

Out of the box, Drupal 8 is easier to use, more flexible, more robust, and more secure than any of its predecessors. 

Let?s take a look at a few of the specifics behind these claims. 

Built with content creators in mind

If you?re among the 77% of B2C or 88% of B2B companies that employ content marketing to reach prospective customers, Drupal 8 makes it easier than ever to hit the ground running with content production. (http://contentmarketinginstitute.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/2016_B2C_Research_Final.pdf) (http://contentmarketinginstitute.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/2016_B2B_Report_Final.pdf) 

The in-line and in-context editing functions allow editors to update content or make corrections right on the page from any device. Those working in fast-paced startup or small business environments will no longer be tied to their desks in order to receive, review, and edit content.

According to the Content Marketing Institute a majority of companies report that one of their biggest obstacles to an effective content strategy is creating content on a consistent basis. Drupal 8 has removed some of the barriers to consistency by making it easier to create, edit and publish content.

One of the most important tools for authors that ships with Drupal core is the configurable WYSIWYG editor. This can be configured to the specifications of the content team and allows them to easily create well-structured content. Do you want to highlight text with a larger font or by indenting it? Simply add the styles to the editor and define them in your theme.

Text and images form blocks on the editor side and can be easily manipulated on the page through the drag and drop feature allowing the content team to display content in a way that attracts readers and encourages them to engage with the content.

It is also easier to add alt text and captions to images included in content making them search engine and reader friendly, as well as making images more accessible to sight-impaired visitors through web accessibility readers.

The real beauty of this is that content creators and editors will have a workflow that makes sense and in the end will save time and remove hurdles to the content creation process.

Mobile first

The number of mobile-only Internet users is growing rapidly and mobile accessibility represents the future of web browsing. People can use their mobile devices just about anywhere opening up the ability to deliver information they need when they need it rather than after they?ve returned to their desk and may no longer feel as urgent about seeking the information.

Mobile-only Internet users surpassed PC-only users in March 2015 (https://www.comscore.com/Insights/Blog/Number-of-Mobile-Only-Internet-Users-Now-Exceeds-Desktop-Only-in-the-U.S) and the number will continue to grow, but that isn?t the only reason to focus on mobile-first site construction. In April 2015, Google announced that an algorithm change would benefit websites that were mobile-friendly and that this would have a greater impact on mobile search results than either Google Panda (http://searchengineland.com/library/google/google-penguin-update) or Google Penguin (http://searchengineland.com/library/google/google-panda-update).

Site administrators also benefit from Drupal 8?s mobile-first approach with a responsive administrative interface that makes completing admin tasks easy on any size screen.

Multilingual out of the box

Drupal 8 delivers a true multilingual experience for global organizations and sites targeting a global audience. This is evident before installation has begun with a long list of installation languages presented so that your site is set up in your language of choice.

Once Drupal is installed site builders simply enable the appropriate modules under the ?Extend? tab. There are options to translate configuration items like blocks, views, and menus; content, which includes nodes, comments, and taxonomy tags; and the built-in user interface.

Transliteration has also been added to core making the handling of special characters easier in Drupal 8.

Forms and data

For most businesses, gathering information about their site visitors and customers is just as important as delivering information to them. Forms are now included in Drupal core and have better support for the collection of different data types like phone numbers, email addresses, dates, links, and other information critical to building relationships with site visitors.

What didn?t change about Drupal?

Flexible and scalable

Drupal remains the most flexible, most scalable CMS available. Drupal 8 is built on the Symfony framework which basically means the code is standardized and more stable. It also means that programmers who know Symfony can easily move into working in Drupal, where in Drupal 7 there was a rather high hurdle to learning Drupal.

One of the benefits of Drupal over other CMSs has always been its scalability. That has never been more true than with Drupal 8. This allows startups and young businesses to start small with their website, yet have plenty of room to grow and add features often without extensive programming.

Stable and secure

Security is a priority to the thousands of developers who help monitor and maintain Drupal core in conjunction with a dedicated Security Team. 

Drupal is the favored CMS by government agencies and major universities - organizations that value security. Harvard, Stanford, and the White House?s website are all built using Drupal.

Community

Arguably, the best feature of Drupal is the vibrant community of developers who work together to build, test, and maintain innovative ways to create, store, and display information through websites and web applications.

As mentioned above, Drupal 8 strengthens the community by building on a more standardized PHP framework, which opens up opportunities for new developers. This, in turn, strengthens the community?s ability to innovate.