Drupal is among the most popular CMS's, beloved worldwide for its reliability, scalability, flexibility, and security. Moreover, having a huge tech support community and open source code, Drupal can be an excellent option for those who want to establish their own website without any kickstart budget. Today, we would like to tell you about the must-have features any dedicated developer must implement in their Drupal website, and how important each item is.
Top 6 pro tips to help you make your Drupal site competitive
The following six must-haves for Drupal sites are the best practices and tips hinting at procedures one must realize in order to build an integral web-resource able to meet competition or increase the conversions of the existing solution.
1. Connect Cache API
The modern website pages are becoming more and more voluminous: media content is always preferred more than plain text. In order for the Internet resources to perform properly, the developers are obliged to implement the asynchronous content-loading procedure. But if there is a special library for images that is enabled once the main page is loaded, the asynchronous loading of HTML-blocks for a page becomes a much more complex affair.
You should definitely connect the Cache API in order to realize the efficient Drupal asynchronous blocks-loading. Otherwise, your web-resource will lag a lot (even despite the fact that the Drupal CMS as a whole was built to work at maximum capacity).
2. Implement basic security requirements
As we have already mentioned, the discussed CMS is preferred by many web developers because of one of the major Drupal site features – a stable high level of security. Nevertheless, by ignoring some basic regulations in this aspect you can undermine your website’s competitive ability and spawn weak points in all the wrong places. In particular, check the following security aspects:
does your resource employ the HTTPS secure data transfer protocol?
does your site feature an SSL certificate (this is required if the site processes personal data)?
do you employ unique table name prefixes while configuring databases to avoid the SQL-injections?
is access to important files through .htaccess blocked on your site?
is the SFTP- or SSH-encryption activated?
is Drupal security module connected to your resource (this one, for instance)?
3. Update a website to the latest Drupal version
It may happen that a Drupal-resource owner is unable to catch up with support at times and forgets to update the version of the CMS itself. The latest Drupal version is 8. However, there are also transitional versions that must be updated in order to achieve:
- Decreased risks of being hacked. CMS's are very frequently hacked. That is one of the primary reasons why the developers release new versions in the first place – their security is gradually improved;
- Lesser number of bugs on the site. You may know that indicating ALL bugs in any at least slightly complex solution is impossible. Nevertheless, as new versions appear, detected by testers and regular users, bugs are eliminated by the creators. The newer versions are ultimately improved and cleansed of unpleasant lagging;
- Increased susceptibility to redesign. When you realize that it’s time to commence the website redesign, your latest updated CMS version will help you significantly cut the volume of the upcoming work. Perhaps certain modules would have to be reworked or corrected; perhaps all the fixes would already be included in the newer CMS version package.
4. Adapt your website theme to various screen formats
An increasing number of people are using their mobile gadgets as their primary source of access to the Internet. That is why, when creating a new Drupal 8 solution, it is very important to make sure its design can automatically adapt to the various mobile device screen formats.
This can be achieved in a number of ways. The most trivial one being choosing/creating a responsive theme. You can read more on this topic on the official Drupal website. Another less obvious and much more complex from the implementation perspective way is when you create two separate websites – one for desktop and one for mobile. In such a case, you will also have to find a solution for simultaneous content usage on both of your Drupal resources. For that, connect such must-have Drupal modules as the feeds module or domain module.
5. Employ the website performance indicating tools
The comfortable-for-human-perception speed of page loading is considered to be 1-2 seconds. If your Drupal site takes longer than that to load, it is very probable that users will leave at once and start looking for similar content on another web-resource. The fact that your website is slow can also affect its search engine positions. For example, Google automatically points out the AMP pages in search results, demonstrating to users that this one web-resource loads faster than most others.
In order to understand how fast your Drupal website really performs, use the built-in performance indication tools, as well as the tips available on the official page.
6. Optimize website content
Try to employ all the capabilities provided by the existing search system mechanisms to the fullest extent. The thing is, in the last few years, the engines have started becoming more human-oriented, which means that nowadays, in order to get to the SERP tops, it is absolutely unnecessary to hire professional SEO people and wait for their ‘magic’ to work for months on end.
You can simply fill your website with new, good, and, most importantly, unique content regularly. You can also connect the special Drupal module SEO Checklist. This is one among the many embeddable tools for simplifying the work of searching robots on the pages of your resource. It will provide you with a centralized element for monitoring the purchasing or other statistics and other useful SEO readings (e.g. it will tell you where there are inactive links on your website pages). It will also allow you to realize basic SEO optimization without the involvement of direct Internet-marketers.
Notice that as an additional set of tools you can use Google Analytics.
As you might have noticed, all the mentioned Drupal best practices present a pretty serious volume of work on your Drupal CMS-based site. Not everyone is able to efficiently implement those procedures. If you want to enhance your Internet-resource’s existing capabilities, but do not know where to begin in practice, ask us to help you out! We will transform your Drupal website and make it utterly responsive, high-performing, secure, and optimized for the searching robots.
As a result, you get a properly functioning online resource with rapidly increasing conversion rates. Contact our employees by the following addresses and we will get in touch with you as quickly as possible to discuss further details.