What’s the Deal with Craft CMS?

What’s the Deal with Craft CMS?

This is a presentation I gave at the Portland Designer News meetup.

Slide Captions + Notes:

1) What’s the deal with Craft CMS?

2) What is it?

3) Craft is a general-purpose CMS designed to do one thing really well: manage content.
> We’ve built Craft with a very clear vision of what it is, and what it is not, which dictates what types of features make it in vs. get vetoed.

4) Made by Pixel & Tonic
> Unlike most popular CMSes (which are usually open source), Craft is a commercial, proprietary CMS created and supported by a small company called Pixel & Tonic.

5) What is it for?

6) Websites | Content APIs
> Craft is built for any and all content challenges. It is not strictly a "website CMS" nor is it strictly a "headless CMS" for content APIs; it's both.

7) What is it not for?
> Rather than listing every little thing Craft could be used for, it’s easier to list a few things it’s *not* for.

8) Personal blogs where branding isn’t a priority
> If you’re just building a blog for yourself and not trying to "build a brand", by all means just use WordPress/Ghost/Medium/Tumblr/etc. and get to the writing part!

9) Big enterprise orgs that need big enterprise features
> If you’ve got a giant requirements spreadsheet with a bunch of specific CMS requirements, the chances are Craft isn’t going to be a good fit in your organization. You'll probably be better off going with an "enterprise CMS" like SiteCore or AEM.

10) SaaS apps
> If you're building an actual web application, use an application framework like Yii or Laravel and build it out yourself. Craft is built on Yii so it does provide a nice application framework, but all of the actual Craft features will add a lot of unneeded bloat.

11) Who is it for?

12) Designers and devs that want more control over their site | Content managers looking for a better author experience

13) What makes it great for designers and devs?

14) Clean slate for content models
> Craft doesn't make any assumptions about your content. It gives you a clean slate where you can define your content types, and what sorts of custom fields they should have.

15) BYOHTML
> Craft doesn't have any theming capabilities. It's for sites that have a custom design. So you can build your own static HTML templates and then inject the templating code within them to make them dynamic. Craft comes with the Twig templating system, which is really powerful and easy to learn. No PHP required!

16) Element API
> You can also expose your content through a JSON API using our Element API plugin (https://github.com/pixelandtonic/ElementAPI). You can use this in addition to (or instead of) regular Twig templates. I guess you could say Craft is a "head-optional" CMS.

17) Powerful plugin APIs
> Craft doesn't try to do everything out of the box; it's very focused on the content management features. But it does come with a very powerful and elegant set of plugin APIs that can be used to extend the core functionality where needed. Plugin developers have built hundreds of truly amazing plugins for Craft, which you can browse here: http://straightupcraft.com/craft-plugins

18) Awarded Best CMS for Developers

19) “Craft is the most powerful and flexible CMS available today.” –Cory Etzkorn

20) What makes it great for content managers?

21) Beautiful and intuitive control panel
> Our goal at Pixel & Tonic is to build tools that make our customers look like superheroes in front of their clients. So we put a lot of work into making Craft’s control panel as simple and intuitive as possible. We often hear from our customers about how quickly the client training went, and how much their clients love using Craft, so we must be doing something right :)

22) Live Preview
> Craft has a "Live Preview" mode that lets you see what a webpage is going to look like, as you’re working on it. You can also easily share drafts with others.

23) Matrix
> Craft’s "Matrix" field makes it easy to create repeating and long-form content. You get to define which types of "blocks" will be available to authors, as well as which custom fields each of those block types should have.

24) Localization
> Craft has built-in localization and translation support.

25) Versions & Drafts
> Craft keeps track of changes authors make to the entries, and allows authors to create new drafts of entries that exist alongside the live content.

26) Awarded Best CMS for SMB

27) Pricing

28) 3 editions
> Craft comes in 3 flavors: Personal (free), Client ($199 per site), and Pro ($299 per site). The Personal edition is limited to a single user, but pretty much everything else is possible. Client builds on Personal with a second "client" user account that can have restricted user permissions, so it's suited for small clients where only one person will actually be managing content. Pro comes with unlimited user accounts, user groups, permissions, and public user registration, as well as cloud-based asset storage support (S3. Rackspace Cloud, Google Cloud).

29) Just pay once per site, and get free updates for life

30) Free to try Client and Pro on a local box
> See https://craftcms.com/support/try-craft-client-pro for details

31) Community
> A CMS is only as good as its community, and Craft's doesn't disappoint!

32) Craft Slack | Craft CMS Stack Exchange | PDX CMS
> Craft has an active Slack group (sign up on https://craftcms.com/community), and its own dedicated Stack Exchange site (http://craftcms.stackexchange.com). There's also several meetups taking place around the world. If you're in Portland, check out the PDX CMS meetup. Not strictly focused on Craft, but most of its members are Craft users.

33) Take it for a spin – demo.craftcms.com
> There's a no-hassle way to check out Craft. Just go to https://demo.craftcms.com, enter your name and email, and within a couple minutes we'll email you with a link to your own personalized demo site you can fool around with.

34) Thank you

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Brandon Kelly

April 21, 2016
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