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      Exploring Drupal: A Look at its Applications Across Industries


      Drupal is one of the world’s most powerful Content Management System (CMS) platforms powering thousands of websites and applications. It is an open-source platform that simplifies the process of creating and extending websites and apps thanks to features like no-code editing functionality, themes, templates, plugins, extensions and more!

      Let’s expound more on the history of Drupal, its usage statistics including an overview on who are the most popular users of the Drupal platform today.

      Drupal History & Usage Statistics

      For starters, Drupal has a history of Drupal dating back to the year 2001. It was created by Dries Buytaert and Hans Snijder who were students at the University of Antwerp. It was initially developed as a message board, a project that evolved quite fast that by January 2001, they had released the first public version of Drupal!

      You are perhaps wondering where the name “Drupal” comes from. It is actually coined from the Dutch word “druppel,” meaning “drop,”. This is also represented in that drop of water in its logo which symbolizes the open-source community’s collaboration in the project.

      Over the years, Drupal has gained a dedicated following and grown into a robust platform for building websites and applications. According to CMS usage statistics compiled by w3Techs, a web technology market share analysis service, Drupal has 1.2% of the world’s CMS market share.


      Let’s now look into some of the Drupal users and use cases:

      Drupal Website Users Across Various Industries

      Startups and Small Businesses

      Drupal is used by many personal brands, startups and small businesses around the world to create simple websites that showcase products and services. Startups can also work with a Drupal development company to build custom interactive web apps.

      The CMS has a user-friendly interface and vast customization options which makes it easy for small businesses to create professional websites and apps to establish a strong online presence.

      Drupal’s scalability is also perfect for growing businesses. For example, startups can scale their website traffic without the hassle of switching platforms like say, moving to another CMS.

      Educational Institutions

      Drupal is also widely used in the education sector. There are many universities, schools, and other educational institutions that use Drupal including the likes of George Washington University, University of Oxford, Rutgers University and more.

      The CMS allows educational institutions to create complex websites with features like course catalogues, event management, student portals, and collaborative platforms.
      In fact, Drupal has an extensive library of modules and themes that allows for easy integration of LMS-specific functionalities. There are LMS-focused modules like Opigno that add specialized learning management features.

      The features make it easier for the educational institutions to create web platforms where they can manage courses, assessments, and student progress, much faster and on a budget!

      Drupal’s multilingual capabilities is also a nice feature for these institutions to accommodate diverse student populations.

      Government Agencies and Public Institutions

      Government agencies and public institutions are also using Drupal to create and maintain official websites, including building portals for e-government services. Some good examples are the Australian Prime Ministers Office and New Zealand Government just to mention a few.

      Government agencies often use drupal development services to help them customize the CMS to suit their specific needs including creating applications that can handle complex workflows and functionalities.

      Its content management features make it easy for government agencies to publish and manage a vast amount of information and resources.

      The modular architecture is also ideal for custom security measures, compliance standards, user safety and privacy, which are a top priority for government agencies.

      Nonprofit Organizations

      Nonprofits tend to have unique website requirements, and this is where Drupal also comes in handy by providing a wide array of out-of-the-box functionalities that help them manage, collect and disseminate content to users.

      In fact, some of the world’s biggest Nonprofits websites’ are built using Drupal including the United Nations (UN) website, World Food Programme (WFP), World Tourism Organization websites and more.

      Nonprofit organizations love that the CMS can handle vast content including features like taxonomy. This aspect plays a crucial role for non-profits as it provides a systematic and structured way to categorize and organize content.

      A nonprofit organization can also work with a top Drupal development service to create customized donation forms. This can help capture donor information, donation amount, payment details, and additional options like recurring donations or tribute gifts.

      Again, the beauty is that their modules like Webform or Entity form that makes the process easier than building them from scratch.

      These and many other features empower nonprofits to further their causes and engage with their audience better.

      E-commerce Businesses

      Online shopping is growing quite fast and e-commerce businesses are now demanding feature-rich websites that deliver top-notch buying and selling experiences. Small and big online stores are using Drupal to help meet these kinds of demands.

      For one, it is an open-source platform with many shop themes meaning that it saves a lot on ecommerce development costs.

      There are even dedicated e-commerce modules like Drupal Commerce and other third-party integrations that allow ecommerce owners to add shopping cart functionality, product catalog management, payment gateways, and order processing to their websites.

      Media and Publishing Companies

      Drupal is also popular among media and publishing companies. It is used by some of the world’s biggest publishers like the Economist.com and Popsci.com.

      Again, its content management prowess particularly the advanced taxonomy, categorization, and publishing workflows makes the CMS a good choice for publishing multimedia content.

      Also, the platform’s integration with third-party systems and social media platforms allows easy content distribution and engagement for bloggers and news publishers.

      Enterprises and Multinational Corporations

      Enterprises and multinational corporations are also leveraging Drupal’s scalability, performance optimization features, and enterprise-level security to meet business demands.

      Some of the Fortune 500 companies that are using Drupal include the likes of IBM, Pfizer, Tesla, General Electric and more.

      The CMS can handle the high demands of enterprise-level websites without compromising performance. It can also integrate with enterprise systems like CRM, ERP, and marketing automation tools like Salesforce, Webform SugarCRM, Hubspot, SAP ERP and more.

      Web Development Agencies and Freelancers

      Web development agencies like cmsMinds and freelancers also love Drupal for its extensibility and flexibility. Its modular architecture allows developers to create custom functionalities, themes, and modules tailored to clients’ specific challenges.

      The wide community and documentation support is another attractive prospect for many developers.

      Wrapping up

      In a nutshell, Drupal has built a reputation as one of the most user-friendly CMS platforms in the market with a vibrant community of developers around the world. This content management tool delivers premier customization features, top-notch security, and more. This is why it is an excellent web development choice for virtually every niche from freelance projects, small business websites to enterprise grade websites.

      Drupal FAQs Answered

      Drupal is free or rather, it is an open-source CMS platform. You can use and modify the platform to virtually any type of web development project. Many of the Drupal modules are also open-source, albeit, there are some you might need to purchase to access extra features and developer support.

      Drupal is generally easy to use. It actually has a smooth learning curve even for beginners, thus you don’t really need to be good with coding to build simple websites.
      That said, you will need to know how to code or better even, work with a Drupal developer or agency if you are looking to build a website with more complex customization aspects like an interactive website for a business, an ecommerce, a school portal, to mention a few.

      The same applies if you would like to create your own custom modules and themes for Drupal development.

      Again, you don’t really need to be good with PHP to build a simple website with Drupal. However, having a solid understanding of PHP will help you learn how to do advanced customizations for your website.

      It will also be easier for you to fix any bugs that crop up during development or fatal errors that can crash the site later.

      Yes, you can build a web app with Drupal. You can even create your own modules to add the kind of functionalities or workflows you want for your app, including integrating your website with other third-party services like payment gateways, CRM, ERP and more.

      You can also go as far as using modern web app development frameworks like ReactJS to build your app on top of Drupal!

      In the traditional Drupal architecture, the entire platform handles both frontend functions and the back-end features like content management, database, web logic and the likes.
      The Headless Drupal, on the other hand, is a newer approach where you can separate the backend and frontend functionalities.

      In this case, the Drupal CMS serves as the core, handling aspects like content management and database management for the website or web app. Then, you can build your frontend on top of this core using any technology or framework you fancy.

      For example, you could use modern web development frameworks like React, Angular or Vue.js to build the frontend part of the website.

      Yes, Drupal is good for seo as it is a nice CMS if you want to optimize your website for Search Engine Optimization (SEO). For starters, the platform makes it easy for you to organize and structure your website and content in a way that makes it easier for search engines to discover and rank your web pages.

      There are also many wonderful Drupal modules that will help you with SEO. From modules that let you submit sitemaps of your website to Google, to those that will help you do a real-time SEO analysis on your web pages and optimize your content to rank higher faster!

      Author's Bio

      Jayesh Makwana
      Jayesh Makwana

      Jayesh Makwana writes with one goal in mind: to make Drupal easy for everyone. From his first steps with Drupal 6 to mastering the latest updates, he’s a true Drupal geek, passionate about sharing his knowledge. Whether it’s tips on Drupal migration, upgrading your site, or catching up on the newest features, Jayesh’s articles are your friendly guide. He simplifies complex topics, making them accessible to Drupal users of all levels. Follow Jayesh for insights that enlighten and inspire, all delivered with the enthusiasm of someone who loves what they do.

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