We’re often asked why we choose Craft as our content management system (CMS) for projects. Though there are many CMS out there, we think Craft is the best by far, for many reasons…
Your CMS, just the way you like it
Each Craft install is a blank canvas. No unnecessary features, default layouts or ‘square peg, round hole’ scenarios here. Ever felt like you’re adjusting your needs to fit your CMS rather than the other way around? Craft gives us the freedom to build an intuitive back-end based only on the features you need and design a beautiful, standout front-end unfettered by restriction. And because we don’t have to spend time stripping back the default install, Craft is much quicker to set up, reducing your development spend.
Flexible content types
Built to last
We hate WYSIWYGs. You started out with a shiny new website: slick, professional, cohesive. Six months down the line you’re staring at a melange of different header styles, a mishmash of off-brand colours and a positive melee of mangled layouts. Craft gives you content types that are tailored to your content needs yet anchored to your designs, meaning you can get creative by mixing and matching the elements you want. We use our design savvy to make sure that the end product looks great and integrates seamlessly with your other content. The result? A site that gets better with age. Like a fine wine. Or David Attenborough.
It’s not finished yet
This is going to save you content creators a lot of time. Craft has a feature that lets you view the changes you make in the back-end, side-by-side with how they appear on the front-end, in real time! Want to get experimental but not sure how it will look? No problem. Craft lets you tinker to your heart’s content, automatically updating the look of the page to reflect your changes until you have your masterpiece. Want a second opinion? You can quickly share and get feedback from others without having to put the content live. They don’t even need a login. Nifty, eh?
Are we there yet?
The Craft elves are big on performance. Most CMS need to lose a little weight, suffering from bloated code, inefficient architecture and unnecessary extras that mean navigating your site can feel like you’re running uphill. In treacle. The latest iteration of Craft is an Olympic athlete by comparison, outperforming all other CMS in our benchmarking tests and even smashing its own loading time records by about 300%. And trust us, when page speed is arguably the most important factor in keeping your users happy, this is a big plus.
Easy to use, easy on the eye
Ok, ok. So we covered this in customisation, but it bears repeating. The back-end is ridiculously easy to use and remarkably intuitive, meaning less time spent learning and getting lost, more time spent creating and wowing your users. It has also been designed by a designer and has a clean, minimal aesthetic. And when you have to look at it every day, the quality of your wallpaper is more important than you might think.
Keeping the bad guys at bay
It’s rare that a week goes by without another major company making headlines because of a security breach. Everyone is a potential target for cyber crime – even you – and so you need a CMS that is going to protect your content and your users. Craft has an impeccable security record and its one-click update system means it’s quick and easy to stay ahead of the curve.
You’ve got a friend
When something goes wrong, it’s important that you aren’t left out in the cold. Too many CMS suffer from bad documentation, poor development communities and non-existent support. At Craft HQ, there is a team of developers waiting to answer your questions around the clock and a thriving community support network, meaning help is always at hand.
Craft vs ExpressionEngine
EE will forever hold a place in our hearts, having served as our go-to CMS for nearly five years before Craft came along. Pixel and Tonic were, once upon a time, producing quality add-ons for EE before eventually getting frustrated with some of its shortcomings and deciding to branch off and write a CMS of their very own. Out of the box, Craft usually requires far fewer add-ons than EE (reducing time to market and development cost), is easier to write templates for and customise, and is also a lot quicker. Think of it as being like EE, minus the bad bits.
Craft vs WordPress
WordPress is the most popular CMS in the world and is free. It’s also, by comparison, bloated, slow and has a pretty reprehensible security record. Add to that the assumptions WordPress makes about the type of content you have, the lack of customisation options and a frankly difficult admin interface and Craft will win out every time. To its credit, WordPress does handle blogs really well (it started as a blogging platform and its roots are ever-evident). But try to make it fit around other types of content and it tends to feel like the CMS is working against you rather than for you.
Craft vs Drupal
Drupal is an incredibly powerful, free CMS that has been a big player for years. While it offers most of the same functionality as Craft, slower development times, slower run speed and major headaches when it comes to updating means Craft comes out on top.