Drupal : A market leader due to sustained community contribution
An effective Content Management System usually is a major reason behind the exponential development of an organization. There are various CMSs that help content delivery organizations showcase their capabilities to the market. Among these, there are a few that help organizations really stand out from the competition and establish themselves as major players. Drupal, which is open source, is one such CMS. There are multiple factors causing Drupal to be a CMS favorite in recent times.
The key factor that has brought such popularity to Drupal is that it’s a high quality open source offering. In today’s competitive world, cost reduction while retaining quality has become possible through such opensource and free software. Small wonder that quality open source software has had such a huge impact on the digital marketing strategies of the smaller players.
Yet, it is not merely small organizations that have been benefitting from Drupal solutions. Drupal’s efficiency in securely handling enterprise level projects has made it preferred even by larger organizations across the world. Although Drupal's growth is well sustained and steady, yet there are major challenges in its future, especially that of sustaining the growth of the Drupal community.
After joining the Drupal community or attending a Drupal conference for the first time, one becomes aware of the incredible ecosystem that powers this software. One understands why the motto of Drupal is - “come for the software, stay for the community”. One also begins to size up the humongous effort needed to sustain and expand such an ecosystem.
As an open source community heavily reliant on volunteer experts, the community needs a great deal of continuing initiative to keep up the momentum of its growth. To sustain Drupal’s reliability, the community needs to implement regular releases of new versions, compliant add-on modules, extensibility features and regular security updates. In addition, it needs to conduct events and also get the support of an increasing number of organizations to support its endeavors and to use its CMS.
Drupal Association, the nonprofit organization behind Drupal events, has been going all out to communicate about and obtain the efforts needed to improve Drupal. Yet, it faces a never-ending challenge to procure software development contributions, funding and documentation needing such large scale voluntary effort.
Global Enterprise Success Cases
The deployment of enormous Drupal sites by global corporations is a key factor in establishing Drupal as a leader in the enterprise world. This is because such organizations often have multiple Drupal sites, sometimes up to hundreds of websites for a single company. Yet, numerous startups and small and medium enterprises equally spell success for Drupal, as they scale up to much larger sizes with time.
Drupal’s growing popularity, has spurred on proprietary CMSs to find ways to differentiate their products and thereby retain their positions as leaders in the enterprise market. Additionally, the rising popularity of Web Experience Management (WEM) is fast becoming a new challenge for open source CMS. Consequently, open source CMSs are facing demands in terms of configuring platforms to support organizations in enhancing customer engagement. As Drupal is a modular platform, its inherent extensibility and flexibility has served to its advantage in meeting WEM requirements.
In addition to flexibility, organizations also need a CMS to have robust, well-configured modules. Drupal has long established strict security and quality guidelines for the development of modules. This makes organizations consider it a reliable long-term investment.
Notwithstanding challenges, Drupal’s chances at a bright future are strengthened by a passionate and well established community contribution culture. The steady progress in the eighth version of Drupal, expected to be released in 2014, shows a large motivated effort that’s remarkable because it’s voluntary. As the market opens massively to the idea of open source CMSs at enterprise level, the new release may as well lead to a huge surge in Drupal use. As a long term beneficiary of as well as a proud contributor to the vibrant Drupal community, we have faith that it will evolve into a Web Experience Manager capable of enhancing user-experiences to suit the future.