I've been building small business type sites now for a lot of years and one of the biggest headaches for me has always been support for updates and changes after the site is built.
I've decided to start building sites around a CMS and based on what i've read and been told so far, it seems like Joomla is the best bet.
However, after installing 1.5 and it's default info (the fake articles it has, etc)... then installing a template i found that would work fine for a small business site, i was COMPLETELY lost.
I am looking for some advice from this forum about the best route for familiarizing myself with Joomla. I found a buttload of books on amazon but if any of you guys have any recommendations that would be appreciated.
Ideally, what i want to do is this:
- Make 10 or so pre-made designs (that can be skinned to match any companies look)
- Have a client choose a template which we'll skin
- Initially fill in all their content
- Give them their Joomla login with instructions on how to update and manage the site.
Most of the sites i do just need to be able to manage their own news, their contact information, and maybe manage a photo gallery.
Also i am open to any other recommendations for CMS's that might be even easier to integrate into my own templates, and VERY easy for clients to manage.
Just a bit of advice before you go delving off into the Joomla deep end.
1. have a range of CMS options avalable for the end consumer based upon their level of knowledge with CMS engiens and coding.
c. Mombo - Now defunct I think
e. Fill in the blank
f. fill in the blank
2. also *** BUY *** the Joomla book from Joomla.org that is Orange and Black. I own it it is exceptionally well written but is written in a condensed fashion that you learn a lot on one page.
3. Know your consumer, don't just give them something they don't know how to use. Offer them a maintaince (sp) plan so that you get extra income by either teaching them how to use it or doing the work for them. $$$
If you want simple I'd check out Website Baker, Etomite or CMS Made Simple.
Thanks i'll check these out. I need something so simple that a complete moron could login and not be overwhelmed. Joomla looks powerful and i love all the extensions you can add, but if i can't figure it out off the bat, i know someone that is not very web savvy would have trouble.
They should be able to just login, see their very basic functions like adding a new post to their company news, or changing contact info, and thats it.
I like the other suggestion of charging extra for managing it. If they are still too clueless on how to use any CMS at least i could charge them an extra monthly fee and having the CMS in place would just make it a breeze for me or an employee to handle updates.
I prefer Joomla over the others as it is a very efficient CMS... but I'm not going to lie, it takes time to learn. I've been using Joomla for a couple years and I'm still learning stuff all of the time!
The main benefit of Joomla is that it's always being update/refined and there's always new templates and components being released... and they tend to get better as time goes on. The bad thing is that it often takes some time to figure out how to customize any of them. If you're seriously going to dive into the world of Joomla, you need to do some reading on it and get to know it inside and out. Pick up the book that was recommended above, and also don't be afraid to search the net for guide/shortcuts provided by Joomla users. One thing I've found is that there are a lot of helpful folks out there in the Joomla community who are more than willing to offer advice/guidance whenver possible.