Drupal's strength is its flexibility and virtually unlimited expansion options. The multitude of possible applications makes it a choice of many companies from around the world as a platform for building websites and web applications. From this post, you will learn about the types of Drupal-based systems that we have built in our Drupal agency.
Some sections of the list below contain only a brief description of the functionality, due to the contracts with our clients. Links to case studies with a full description of the project are provided where possible.
One of the most common uses of Drupal is building a corporate website. This, however, does not mean a simple company website containing just a few to over a dozen subpages.
Drupal is chosen if there is a need to build a complex website. A website that will be constantly expanded as the company grows. A website that will exist for three years or more.
An excellent example of such a website is the website of the Bank Ochrony Środowiska Brokerage House. Take a look at our Case Study and see how we have helped build this corporate website.
We have been also developing websites for another bank for over three years. In this case, we are working on over 20 websites for many countries. Drupal works perfectly as a CMS for such solutions.
Among the industries for which we have built websites there are:
- professional B2B services,
- telecommunications companies,
- healthcare companies.
Websites for higher education facilities and schools
Websites for higher education facilities and schools are very similar in terms of functions to corporate websites. They are usually information pages divided between groups of recipients (for students, for doctoral candidates, etc.) and news divided into categories.
Often there are also lecturers' profiles on which they can post information materials.
We have built several websites for higher education facilities, mainly those from Poland and Great Britain.
One of the examples of our implementations is the website for the Mathematical Institute of the University of Wrocław https://www.math.uni.wroc.pl.
The system has been designed so that many people can manage its individual sections. For example, lecturers were given access to the sections with their seminars and can add class schedules and downloadable materials there. Here is one example: https://www.math.uni.wroc.pl/seminarium/analiza-harmoniczna
The website was built in 2014 and has been working continuously since then, helping in conducting educational activities.
It is good to keep this in mind when planning the creation of a new website. If you choose Drupal, it will be an investment for many years to come, not an expense for 2-3 years, after which you will have to build another website.
Large companies employing hundreds, or thousands of people need internal communication tools. You need a way to distribute different types of messages among employees of the entire company or only among selected people (e.g. according to their position or location). In addition, there are such functions as: working time records, holiday requests, contact details, internal forum, announcements, etc.
Drupal works perfectly also in this area. It was created as a system for transmitting content to a large number of people.
We have implemented several large intranet systems. The first one of them was created in 2011 and you can find its description in the Case Study.
Event and training services
Drupal is a very good solution for companies or organisations whose activities are based on cyclical events or training courses. Thanks to the extensive management options for users and their permissions, this system will work very well in this case.
Creating events and registering for events by participants is a functionality that is very easy to achieve in Drupal. Thanks to Drupal's flexibility, you can adjust the event types and the registering method depending on the industry. You can add mechanisms for payment, verification, acceptance, etc.
The description of one example of such a project can be found in the case study. Another example is the DrupalCam Poland conference website.
Social networking sites
Social networking sites usually consist of user accounts allowed to publish various types of content. Drupal will also be a good system for such applications. We have implemented several such websites, including one for a higher education facility, where social features were available to students.
In Drupal, you can quickly make an MVP for a social networking site and verify business goals at a low cost.
The flexibility in creating data types and relationships between them makes Drupal an option for a project management system base. These systems usually contain data such as: projects, tasks and task comments.
There are many ready-made systems in the SAAS option for a fee calculated based on the number of users, but if you have tens of thousands of users who need to use a project management system, the monthly sum of fees will be huge.
Drupal will then work very well as an alternative that will be cheaper in the long run and, moreover, better suited to specific requirements.
Internet sales are currently the basis of activity of many companies. Also, here, Drupal helps companies to implement their business activities. The Drupal Commerce module is very flexible and allows you to customise an online store for specific products.
Due to the fact that it is Drupal, in one system you can have an e-commerce platform, but also a content part, e.g. information about additional services, forms, blog.
This is a huge advantage that Drupal has over other e-commerce systems, where you often have to use additional systems to achieve all this. Thanks to Drupal you do not have to maintain many systems, thus you lower the costs.
An example of a Drupal-based e-commerce system can be found in the Case Study.
Newspapers and magazines
Drupal is often compared to a production line. You can set in it the production of a given type of content and then involve a team of editors who will create this content in large quantities.
This is ideal for newspapers and magazines. They create a lot of content with a similar structure.
A very good example of this type of Drupal-based website is https://www.nba.com.
The data architecture of sports clubs' websites is often similar to the one used for magazine websites. Mainly news and club information are published there.
A sports club website is another type of system for which Drupal will be perfect. Check out how Drupal was used for the ARSENAL club website https://www.arsenal.com.
Software as a service
SAAS systems need a mechanism to create user accounts, manage their permissions (e.g. more access for a higher fee) and recurring payments.
You can easily achieve these functions using Drupal. Permission mechanisms are available in the Drupal core. You can build a recurring payments functionality based on the modules for Drupal Commerce.
By choosing Drupal as a platform for SAAS, you will get ready-made functions for users. You can focus just on creating the application itself. It saves a lot of time.
An example of such an application can be found in the Case Study.
Drupal's strength lies with listing large amounts of data, filtering it according to various parameters and searching.
These are the functionalities used to build a website for real estate companies.
In addition, the ease of integrating Drupal with external systems will make such a website work self-dependently. We have built this kind of platform for one of our clients. Data on real estates was transferred to Drupal from the ERP system. Drupal served as a place to present thousands of real estates from around the world.
Backend, API, headless
Data is usually shared as REST/JSON, but you can also use other methods, e.g. XML or XML-RPC.
If you have several or even several dozen websites in your organisation, think about whether it is not better to provide data for these websites from a single system. If it is, then Drupal works perfectly as a central data transfer system.
As you can see Drupal can have many applications, but the most important thing is that it can have many applications within one system.
You never know in which direction your business will grow. Thanks to Drupal, you can add new functionalities to your website as your business grows.
If you want to start selling, you add the Commerce module. If you start providing training courses, you add new types of data.
You do not have to build the system from scratch with every new service or product introduced. You save a lot of time and money.
That is why I think Drupal is the number 1 system for building websites.