Drupal Custom Theme Development | Know This Before Hiring a Developer for it!

Hiring the right developer for your Drupal custom theme development project is probably the most critical decision you will ever make in the quest to build a good website user experience and business reputation. But let’s first understand a few basics about Drupal then we will discuss tips for hiring a developer for Drupal custom theme development.

Drupal is an open-source and free web content management system that is evolving into a Digital Experience Platform (DXP) with a track record of innovation in customer experience. A DXP is a set of integrated technologies that help optimize customer journeys across multiple channels.

What is Drupal Used For?

Drupal is customizable, so the platform is used to build a tool that fits your company’s needs. It helps serve content management strategies for corporations of different sizes. One of the best platforms for web innovation, Drupal’s solutions have real-world applications in business and technology.

Why is Drupal better than other CMS?

Drupal is better than its competitors in many aspects. We will discuss some of the major attributes that make Drupal a superior CMS choice.

Flexibility

Drupal CMS can handle diverse content types such as videos, podcasts, blogs, polls, and statistics. This enables Drupal custom theme development for different markets like commerce or media. The Drupal CMS scripts include design elements editing capabilities that simplify the creation of web page configurations.

Customization

Drupal has over 16000 plugins and modules that allow you to modify, adjust and implement additional custom features.

Scalability

The Drupal platform is highly scalable. You can exponentially grow the number of web pages with Drupal custom theme development without changing anything else.

Community

Drupal is an open-source CMS. The Drupal open source community offers a free exchange of ideas and approachable online culture and has endless resources like public documentation, discussion boards, and mailing and chat lists.

Security

Drupal CMS is known for its robust security. The platform regularly offers patches and safeguards from vulnerabilities.

Why is Drupal the best CMS solution for custom theme development of a website?

Because of Drupal’s flexibility, customization, scalability, security, and strong community, it is widely considered the best CMS solution. Hence, Drupal custom theme development is far superior to its competitors because of these advantages.

Choosing a competent Drupal developer is as crucial as selecting a superior CMS like Drupal. Here are a few reasons why you need to hire a developer for Drupal custom theme development.

Reasons why you should hire a Drupal developer

You don’t have the required expertise

You might not have the right expertise available for Drupal custom theme development. It is recommended that you hire an experienced and skilled Drupal developer to get the best results.

You want an efficient development process

You may have in-house developers but having a dedicated developer for Drupal custom theme development makes the process more efficient.

You can focus on core business activities

Hiring a dedicated developer for Drupal custom theme development helps you focus on your core business activities. This contributes to optimizing business processes, which eventually leads to increased revenue.

We have defined some essential parameters to help you hire a Drupal developer or Drupal development company that is best for you.

Parameters for hiring a developer for Drupal Custom Theme Development

1.     Skillset of Drupal Developers

Technical competence and expertise are vital skills you should be looking for in a Drupal developer. Make sure the developer is capable of developing Drupal modules that meet your project requirements. They should have the ability for Drupal custom theme development from scratch while following core standards. You should look for a developer who has similar Drupal website development experience and has a diverse project portfolio.

2.     Prior Work Experience

Find someone with not only theoretical knowledge of Drupal but also some years of professional work experience under their belt. Practical knowledge is vital for a successful CMS project. A developer with proven work experience helps make the hiring decision easier. Their prior experience in Drupal custom theme development can give you an idea of what to expect from them.

3.     Certifications

Certifications are a great way of validating a Drupal developer’s competency for a specific project. ACQUIA certifications are one of the best ways to evaluate a developer’s skill set and knowledge.

4.     Innovative Approach

Along with the proper knowledge and skill set, an innovative, out-of-the-box approach to handling Drupal custom theme development is essential. Look for a Drupal developer with a balance between a fundamental and creative approach.

5.     Keeping a Balance between Price and Quality

One of the hardest decisions while hiring a developer for Drupal custom theme development is keeping a balance between price and quality. Don’t waste your budget by not cross-checking the competency of the developer or companies that design Drupal websites. You should not go for the cheapest and budget-friendly option either. It may cost you more than you are trying to save.

6.     Task and Time Management

Development is usually a multi-tasking job. Look for someone with excellent task and time management for Drupal custom theme development. This will ensure your project deadlines are met and all tasks are streamlined.

7.     PHP Proficiency

Drupal is written in PHP. Hiring a developer who is familiar with the language and has experience in its popular frameworks is important. A competent PHP Drupal developer will be the best choice for a Drupal custom theme development project.

8.     Knowledge of third-party applications

Drupal comes with a lot of third-party application integration options. Hire a developer who has experience with third-party integration in Drupal. They will be able to develop quickly, build better features, and secure data access while doing Drupal custom theme development.

9.     Command-Line Interface

Ensure the developer you hire has worked with Drush, a CLI tool. This tool controls and administers websites built on Drupal. Using this tool, the developer can make repetitive tasks more manageable, resulting in efficient processes.

10. Client Testimonials

Reviews or testimonials from previous clients are excellent parameters for assessing a Drupal developer. So it’s best if you get a chance to talk to previous clients about the developers you are considering hiring. This will make the hiring process more manageable.

11. Troubleshooting and debugging

The Drupal developer you intend to hire for Drupal custom theme development should be experienced in troubleshooting and debugging. A developer skilled in these two areas will help prevent a lot of frustration.

12. Proficient with Drupal Theming

The developer, first and foremost, should be well versed in Drupal custom theme development and improving existing themes. The theme is a major part of a visitor’s experience when they visit your site. That is why the developer you hire must understand Drupal themes and their mechanism.

13. Browser Compatibility

It is best to hire someone for Drupal custom theme development who can ensure cross-browser compatibility for your website.

14. Website Optimization

Website optimization depends on many factors, some of which relate to your Drupal theme. To ensure your website visitors have the best experience, hire someone who knows website optimization. Optimized websites with user-friendly Drupal custom theme development help build your business reputation.

15. Version Control System Proficiency

The Drupal developer you hire should have experience with tools like SVN, Git, and Mercurial. These tools help developers keep track of the changes in the core base. A proficient developer can revert to a stable version in case an error occurs. This will ensure smooth version transitions.

16. Template Engine

Twig is a template engine supported by Drupal that helps with accelerated development. A competent Drupal developer will be able to leverage the engine for Drupal custom theme development.

17. Communicate Expectations

Communicate your expectations in written form and also document their expectations. This will help with the hiring and onboarding processes. You will be able to avoid the hassle and frustration common in such processes.

18. Teamwork

The best candidate should be able to work in a team and collaborate with your in-house resources. This will help them quickly integrate into your work culture and avoid internal disputes.

19. Active Drupal Community Member

The Drupal community is a great resource for finding a developer for Drupal custom theme development. You can easily assess potential candidates based on their community content and seniority. The community is helpful in getting references and recommendations to find the best fit for your project.

20. Constant Support

Drupal requires constant maintenance for smooth performance, a secure environment, and a seamless experience. Communicate to candidates that you will require constant support and maintenance.

21. Drupal Security Best Practices

Online security is vital for an organization and its customers. The developer you hire for Drupal custom theme development should be aware of Drupal security best practices. They should be able to avoid vulnerabilities and threats.

Conclusion

We can safely conclude that Drupal is the best choice when it comes to Content Management Systems keeping in mind its flexibility, customization, scalability, security, and developed community.

While hiring a developer for Drupal custom theme development, finding someone with a mix of expertise, soft skills, innovation, and professionalism is vital. Book a FREE Discovery Call with Mpire Solutions for more information.

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Companies that Design Drupal Websites | 4 Tips to Choose One!

Whether you’re building a CMS, launching a brand-new CMS-based website, or contemplating a makeover of an obsolete one, searching for companies that design Drupal websites can be daunting. 

Drupal is a popular open-source web content management system that allows its users to publish, manage and organize content on a website. With Drupal: 

  • There is no need to install software or purchase a license. 
  • Different people can edit different sections of the website at the same time. 
  • Teams can edit style and content separately, without any need to learn web editing skills. 

In this post, you will learn about some important considerations to bear in mind when considering the Drupal design process, searching for companies that design Drupal websites, and ensuring you make the best choices while identifying red flags. But first, let’s understand why you should consider creating a Drupal-based website. 

What Gives Drupal an Edge? 

Flexibility 

Drupal is extremely flexible. You can modify nearly every aspect of your Drupal website, including layouts, colors, content, and integrations. However, it is essential to remember that Drupal, as a content management system (CMS), relies on standard “building blocks” to allow rapid and consistent content authoring. All Drupal websites have themes, which is a compilation of files that define your website’s appearance. When you connect with any one of the reliable companies that design Drupal websites, they will discuss how you want your site to appear to the public.

In addition, Drupal broke down barriers by being localized into more than 90 distinct languages. Because of this, it is open to use by anybody and everyone. It won’t make a difference whether you speak French, Chinese or Arabic; using it will be a breeze in any language. If you think you need a little help here, you can always look for companies that design Drupal websites. They can help you with these customizations.

No Costs for Purchasing Software and Licensing

The fact that Drupal is open source is what sets it apart from other options. Drupal is a CMS that does not cost anything to use. There is no requirement for you to purchase a license or pay for software. 

SEO Integration

Today, search engine optimization is the primary battlefield. If your website has a high ranking in the various search engines, this indicates that a large number of people are able to access it. A Drupal CMS provides you with a wide variety of options to improve the performance of your website. Building a website that is properly optimized requires a firm foundation, which can be achieved by having advanced SEO modules of Drupal 9 and, of course, clean code.

Security

Drupal is the most reliable Content Management System and application framework, making it more secure than the industry leaders. The Drupal Security staff validates and fixes security concerns.

You may secure your Drupal site by salting and frequently hashing account passwords in the database. It enforces secure passwords, industry-standard authentication, session limitations, and single sign-on. Drupal’s selective user access control lets administrators restrict who sees and modifies site components. Drupal may be configured for top-tier database encryption.

Scalability

Drupal can scale to your needs if you want your website to be among the busiest or if it already is and you’re attempting to manage huge traffic on your site’s content. Drupal’s scalability feature has resulted in the creation of a number of amazing, content-rich websites and user experiences online. It makes websites capable of handling a large number of visitors, content contributors, and users at the same time. This is true regardless of the number of content contributors you have, from one to over a thousand. 

Content Management Made Easy 

Drupal’s tools assist authors in publishing content easily and efficiently. Authentication, authorization, and device previews boost editing productivity. Mobile devices can be used to examine, alter, and publish content. Drupal’s content tagging and taxonomy help create content elements, tag information based on attributes, and make material searchable. It’s great for projects requiring easy content authoring. Talk to companies that design Drupal websites online for extra support before employing one.

What to Look for in Companies That Design Drupal Websites?

Now that you are familiar with the fundamentals of Drupal website design, the most critical question is how can you find the most reliable company for the task? 

Here are some essential considerations you should keep in mind while shortlisting companies that design Drupal websites:

Seek Out Drupal Design Examples

You will find hundreds of companies that design Drupal websites online. However, before you hire one, you need to be sure about what you are signing up for. Examining the prior work of companies that design Drupal websites is the most reliable method for determining whether or not they have the necessary Drupal design experience that you require. 

Consider which aspects of your web design project are the most important or may be distinctive to your website. You must ensure that your chosen Drupal development company must have a proven track record on similar projects. For example, if you’re rebuilding a website for an educational institute, you need to look for companies that design Drupal websites with proven experience in developing educational websites. If your website requires a reservation system, you can also see if the company you choose has expertise in integrating websites with CRMs and reservation software. Of course, you should be sure that the samples you see are genuine Drupal websites!

Learn About Their Design Process

If an agency’s design process isn’t clear, ask about it! 

Companies that design Drupal websites should have a “Discovery” phase to learn about their business and its users. This could involve building user personas or identifying the primary tasks you want users to be able to perform on your website.

In addition, you may want to know exactly what design deliverables they’ll supply you before shortlisting any of them. Depending on your project’s size and scope, this may involve wireframes, user journeys, sitemaps, or design mocks. A user-centered design process is crucial, so make sure of that first.

Reliable companies that design Drupal websites will surely have a team of experts to guide you through the process. It’s a positive sign if a design agency uses iterative two-week sprints. The agile technique allows stakeholders to contribute more feedback and reexamine project goals. Ask how the agency’s designers and developers collaborate. When designers and developers have a solid working relationship, the final result will appear just like the mockups the designers present to you during the prototyping phase.

Examine Their Participation in The Drupal Community

The best method to tell if companies that design Drupal websites have genuine Drupal background is to look at their participation in the Drupal community. If they’ve given code to Drupal modules or participated in hosting Drupal events, it’s probable that they’ve made a commitment to staying current on best practices for developing Drupal websites. 

Evaluate Their Communication Style

Remember that you will be collaborating with your Drupal partner day in and day out. Aside from technical expertise, a web design firm must stress communication and client service. 

How To Spot Rookie Companies That Design Drupal Websites?

  • Fake companies may skip the exploration step to give you a lower estimate. Without this first phase, rookie companies that design Drupal websites can’t develop a user experience that satisfies people and helps you reach business goals. Ensure the agency you hire understands your environment and doesn’t merely churn out websites.
  • If a web design proposal offered by one of these shortlisted companies doesn’t cover accessibility or usability, consider it a red flag. Following accessibility guidelines in design and development enables you to access your material and helps everyone locate what they need. Depending on your website’s domain, WCAG compliance may be required.

Conclusion

As of right now, Drupal is the greatest available technology for building powerful content management systems, websites, and apps for all devices. Numerous Drupal development companies are well-equipped, familiarized, and well-versed in dealing with the CMS difficulties that many businesses experience regularly. A user-friendly and futuristic Drupal website can only be created by working with leading website design companies that design Drupal websites.

At Mpire Solutions, we start the Drupal CMS design and development process by learning about your business, user profile, audience, requirements, and any specific need(s) and use our decade-long expertise to create a solution that strikes the perfect balance between user experience and business objectives. 

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