Posted to Ben Finklea's blog on July 18th, 2016

8 Ways Drupal 8 Can Improve Your Website and Generate More Leads

Drupal 8 is a marketer’s dream. With the new core enhancements, you can execute more effective marketing campaigns because you can deliver personalized content segmented by audience, language, and device type. You can develop relevant content that improves SEO, drives users to your website, creates leads, and results in more sales.

Drupal draws on the innovation of thousands of developers, designers, and marketers who contribute to the open-source platform. The result is that cutting-edge, marketing functionality is now included in the core of Drupal 8.

Mobile Responsive is now Core in Drupal 81.  Mobile For Your Customers; Mobile for You

Most platforms today offer some form of mobile responsiveness. While this was an add-on for Drupal 7, it’s now built into Drupal 8’s core functionality. Mobile-responsiveness is critical for Google rankings and it’s key to marketing success. We’ve seen it coming. As more and more people began to use smartphones for everything in their personal lives, it was inevitable that it would drive mobile usage in the business world as well. While consumer marketing was at the forefront of mobile marketing, B2B mobile marketing has expanded as well. Google reports 300% growth in B2B queries in just two years. Mobile isn’t a trend anymore; it’s a necessity.

The newest version of Drupal takes mobility seriously. All of Drupal 8’s built-in themes are mobile-responsive. Web services are built into the core of Drupal 8, allowing content to be accessed from any device such as Amazon’s Alexa. Now that Apple has opened Siri to third party developers, it is only a matter of time before Drupal will be powering Siri’s voice-based interactions.

And mobile is not just for your website visitors. Drupal has taken the next step and optimized website administration for mobile. You can administrate, create and publish content, approve editorial changes, clear caches, or any other admin task all on your mobile device.

Personalization: Drupal 8 can provide your website with personalized content2. The Path From Everyone to Each One--Personalized Content is Now in Drupal 8

Personalized content is needed to be competitive and Drupal 8 provides tools to help you achieve it. Customers are coming to expect streamlined, end-to-end, digital experiences and the companies who fail to provide this are increasingly at a competitive disadvantage. While nearly all marketers see the need for personalization, getting there is another story. Only 4% of marketers consider their web site to be very personalized and most of them don’t know how to achieve it. Often, technology can be a roadblock to achieving higher levels of engagement at every customer touch point.

Drupal 8 can help you quickly deploy various types of digital content and campaigns that span multiple segments and channels. It allows you to define customer segments, create custom content and deliver it in real-time on any device.

Drupal 8 can speed up your site and improve load times3. Speed Matters. Stay in Front of the Race

According to the Aberdeen Group, customers are won or lost in one second. Nearly half of web users expect a site to load in 2 seconds or less and they tend to abandon a site that isn’t loaded within 3 seconds. This means if your website is slow, you’re losing conversions from visitors on your site. A second delay in page response can result in a 7% reduction in conversions. The fact is, faster pages make more money.

The speed of your page loading matters to the user and that means it matters for SEO as well. Google uses page load time as one factor to determine rankings, so optimizing your page load time is important. This will give your website an extra edge on the competition and a boost in rankings.

Drupal 8 has features that make your websites faster without the need for a lot of technical expertise. Drupal 8 uses “cache tags” that makes caching more efficient and includes Cache Context API which provides context-based caching. This means pages load faster while ensuring that visitors always see the latest version of your site.

Also built into Drupal core is the BigPipe module. This new feature in Drupal 8 helps you deliver personalized content with the fastest page load time possible. BigPipe determines what parts of your web page are static and sends that instantaneously. The dynamic portion of your page--the parts that are personalized--are sent next. The net result is a much faster experience for your website visitors.

Drupal 8 Helps with your site's I18n / Internationalization4. Need Multiple Languages? No Problema

Global business has become a strong driver in many companies’ revenue growth. Much of the economic growth is happening in countries like China and India, who have growing middle classes, meaning that if you want to take advantage of the global economy, you need to market to these countries as well. And it’s not just mega companies going overseas; 97% of U.S. exporters of goods are small businesses. The Internet has been the driver in opening up these global markets for goods and services. Through the Internet, even small businesses can target individual consumers in countries around the world. Companies that deliver web-based products and services tend to experience turbocharged global growth.

But all of this increases the complexity of your business: now you must deal with different languages, different customs and different distribution channels. In order to grow successfully, marketing teams must learn to tackle the global marketplace. They need to put the customer first no matter where that customer is located. Serving them well enables you to attract customers in other markets and turn them into referrals.

Drupal 8 has stepped up to the challenge of supporting a global presence. While many users face difficulty with languages and translations in Drupal 7, multilingual support is a part of the Drupal 8 core. With this version of Drupal, you are able to integrate a language much more easily and create territory-specific content. Not only can you change the back-end administration into another language, you can use Drupal’s language translator to translate links, pages and titles. When users visit your website they can select a language from those that you chose to provide. !Qué bueno!

Drupal 8 Makes Your Content Creation and Management Simple5. Simplified Content Creation and Management

As digital content has gained massive importance in most businesses, the ability to easily create and manage content has become more important as well. IT resources are limited in any company and they need to be used wisely. The sooner you can put new content into place, the sooner you can react to changes or problems and the faster you can put new leads into your system.

One of the most exciting improvements in Drupal 8 is the addition of a WYSIWYG editor. With its drag-and-drop interface, you can edit content directly on the page rather than navigating to another. There are many options for image size, shape and alignment. You can also see how those images will look on a mobile device.

Many of the popular Drupal add-on modules have been included in the Drupal 8 core, meaning that less work and customization is needed to get the website you desire. Some of the modules new to Drupal core are Views, Block, and Context. One of the most exciting additions to Drupal 8 core is the Views module which provides great flexibility by enabling you to display any content in whatever format you require.

In addition to simplified content creation, Drupal 8 offers simplified management. You are able to monitor your website and your campaigns on your smartphone. When you are able to track your campaigns and see what is trending from content, social, and email efforts, anywhere and anytime, you can react quickly to market trends and customer requests.

Drupal 8 can integrate with your CRM, analytics, marketing automation and more.6. Integrate, Don’t Re-create Data

Have you ever lost leads in the cracks between your various software systems? Drupal 8 integrates with email, analytics, marketing automation, CRM and other business software to create a seamless transition from content to lead generation to sale.

Drupal 8 offers a big upgrade in usability and often requires less technical understanding to complete integrations with third party systems. Marketers can frequently achieve integrations using community-built modules without coding knowledge.

Drupal 8 SEO For Your Website7. Drupal 8: Proven and Tested  by Thousands

As with any software update, you want to know that the software has been well-tested and proven to work. In fact, tens of thousands of organizations are using Drupal 8 after less than a year on the market. Drupal 8 has more than 75,000 installations since its release in November. At this rate, it is being adopted twice as fast as the popular Drupal 7.

Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSK) used Drupal 8 beta version to launch its new website, in May, 2015, even when the software was still in its beta phase. Learn about other companies who use Drupal 8 at

Drupal 8 Allows for Effective SEO8. SEO that is Sophisticated and Powerful

Drupal has always been one of the best content management systems for effective SEO results.  Drupal’s Taxonomy system automatically creates a page for tags that are optimized for search engines by adding the page to the XML Sitemap and updating it when changes are made. The updated XML sitemap can help search engines find the new content.

With its mobile-responsiveness and speed, Drupal 8 should provide even more assistance in achieving top Google rankings. There have always been a wide range of Drupal 8 SEO modules that can further enhance your SEO efforts.. For Drupal 8, many of these SEO modules are still in testing.

Upgrading to Drupal 8 could create issues for your Google rankings if you don’t plan carefully. Taking SEO into account before the migration can save money. In a migration plan, all the web site’s current content and digital assets should be inventoried and a matrix of old to new should be created. Naming conventions for categories, link URLs, and anchor text should be considered and 301 redirects put in place if needed.

If you don’t have in-house staff to manage the process, you may want to consider hiring an experienced Drupal SEO expert. There is no avoiding an effect in search visibility 100%, however, if the SEO expert is involved from the start, key insights can be incorporated into the overall process, mitigating ill effects such as short term costs for redeveloping CMS and long term effects from uncrawlable content, lost links and lost traffic.

Ready to Make the Switch to Drupal 8?

If you are ready to migrate to Drupal 8, Volacci can provide a Drupal SEO migration audit so that you can make the switch with confidence. Give us a call at (512) 989-2945.

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