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Buyer's Guide to Web Projects

Independent advice in planning and buying web projects.

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Choose the right technologies

What technologies will suit your needs.

To personalize or not to personalize?

May 18, 2015

The whole world is talking about how the power in digital channels has switched over from organizations to consumers. It’s The Age of the Customer as they call it. Humble and patient “Hopefully they’ll provide me what I need if I only search long enough” attitude has been turned upside-down. Now consumers are demanding “Give me everything I want! Right now!” and “only for me and exactly to my specific need”. People want better digital experiences and more relevancy. Suddenly everybody’s time is money.
Continue reading “To personalize or not to personalize?”

Good usability in CMS? A myth?

Feb 3, 2015

No, not a myth. Although for many people CMS usability doesn’t exist. The reason, though, is not that CMS vendors aren’t trying. They are working hard.

But the whole concept of CMS user experience is in its early stages.

First of all, the CMS world is divided into two camps. One side is making rich WYSIWYG interfaces while the other is working on structured content management. Yes, many are saying that they do both, but in reality most of them do structured content management. They have just invested a lot to a “decoration layer” on top of a structured content model.

The big paradox is that both camps are right.
Continue reading “Good usability in CMS? A myth?”

Story of Sitecore by Lars Nielsen

Dec 16, 2014

Today, Sitecore is one of the major players in the global web CMS market, but in the beginning of 2000 it was just another CMS out there. In this interview, one of the founders, Lars F. Nielsen, tells the story of Sitecore and how the company view the global CMS marketplace. Lars visited Helsinki in the beginning of October when CMS Expert Group Europe had its latest meeting, hosted by North Patrol.
Continue reading “Story of Sitecore by Lars Nielsen”

Story of a 300,000-euro web renewal – case helen.fi

Oct 28, 2014

This is a story of how the helen.fi website was renewed. Jukka Helin, Development Manager, Helsingin Energia (energy utility), details the project from the RFP to implementation through to final publishing. The project started in the summer of 2012, and the new site went online in late 2013.
Continue reading “Story of a 300,000-euro web renewal – case helen.fi”

Peculiarity of Finland: Liferay a popular web content management system

Oct 15, 2014

Liferay is slowly becoming more popular in Finland at the moment. Public administration in particular is attracted to this Java portal with a long history. There is even an attempt to make Liferay a widely used common web content management system for governmental organizations. Ministries, in particular, clearly consider Liferay the default CMS choice for new online services at present. The Lutheran church, for example, also has selected Liferay as the common web content management system for its parishes.

In addition to public administration, businesses in the finance industry are using Liferay in Finland to replace their costly Oracle and IBM portals. Continue reading “Peculiarity of Finland: Liferay a popular web content management system”

Modern CMSs are built for power users – interview of Tony Byrne

Sep 2, 2014

In the following interview, Tony Byrne, the founder of CMS research and analyst company Real Story Group, talks about the history, present and future of CMSs. Tony also analyzes the current challenges of the CMS market from the customer point of view. Continue reading “Modern CMSs are built for power users – interview of Tony Byrne”

eCommerce is the new name for web content management – interview with Boris Kraft

Aug 25, 2014

The interview series with CMS experts continues. The founder of Magnolia CMS, Boris Kraft, tells about the early years of the CMS industry and why Magnolia chose the open source way. Boris also explains why he believes eCommerce is currently one of the biggest trends in the CMS industry and why CMS products should be the primary tools to manage customer experiences in all channels. Continue reading “eCommerce is the new name for web content management – interview with Boris Kraft”

Contentful—CMS for mobile applications and custom web services

Aug 13, 2014

Berlin-based Contentful is an interesting startup solving a problem whose existence traditional CMS vendors have all but denied: managing content that is published somewhere else than in the channels the CMS controls.
Continue reading “Contentful—CMS for mobile applications and custom web services”

Marketing has inherited the web, but doesn’t know what to do with it

Jun 25, 2014

The interview series of CMS experts continues. In the following interview Janus Boye, the founder of CMS Expert Group Europe, talks about the history, present and future of CMSs. This interview took place in Leipzig, Germany, where the CMS Expert Group Europe had its latest meeting.
Continue reading “Marketing has inherited the web, but doesn’t know what to do with it”

Facing an extranet challenge? Identity and access management as a solution

Jun 16, 2014

Today we see a lot of extranets that have originally been built for some quite simple and specific need, such as making detailed product information available to partners and resellers. Later, other services that have often been built with different technologies, have been attached to it one by one. Continue reading “Facing an extranet challenge? Identity and access management as a solution”

Good questions to ask yourself when choosing a Content Management System

Jun 9, 2014

Choosing a suitable content management system for your business is not merely a decision on a technical system – it has ramifications for the website built on it, for vendor options, for the maintenance budget and for the everyday life of content managers.

When making your decision, you will run into some problematic questions. Don’t be put off. Although these questions are complex, they are not overwhelming.
Continue reading “Good questions to ask yourself when choosing a Content Management System”

Strongest WordPress agencies in Finland 2014

Jun 3, 2014

The web design blog Vierityspalkki surveyed the WordPress experts in Finland last winter. The project collected information on the agencies, their services, competencies, specializations, and the significance of WordPress to business on the whole. This information was compiled to help clients more easily find their most suitable partner for their WordPress projects. The survey was financed by North Patrol.
Continue reading “Strongest WordPress agencies in Finland 2014”

Future, present and history of CMS user interfaces

May 26, 2014/p>
You don’t usually hear content editors praising the usability of their CMS, but still a lot of effort is spent on designing the user interfaces. We interviewed designer Rasmus Skjoldan from Copenhagen to hear about the current trends and major challenges in CMS user interfaces. Are things getting better? What are the main problems in making CMSs easier to use? Are the CMS vendors focusing on the right things?
Continue reading “Future, present and history of CMS user interfaces”

CMS battle: Drupal vs. EPiServer

May 20, 2014

Drupal and EPiServer seem to be the most common adversaries in Finland right now when it comes to big website projects. Therefore we decided to publish some comparison slides that help to figure out the main differences between these systems. Continue reading “CMS battle: Drupal vs. EPiServer”

Interview with Drupal insider Vesa Palmu

Mar 3, 2014

This time, North Patrol interviews Vesa Palmu, a web professional since many years. We will first glance at the history of the CMS market and how the rise of Drupal coincides with it. Vesa also casts a look at the biggest changes on the CMS market in the last few years and analyzes, for example, the rise of frameworks. Continue reading “Interview with Drupal insider Vesa Palmu”

Choose the blogging platform that is best for you

Jan 30, 2014

Aalto University, Finland, recently held a course on building successful blogging concepts. I gave a presentation about choosing a blogging platform.

The main message of the presentation was that you can run a blog with any CMS. Dedicated blogging platforms make your life easier, but they won’t decide whether you succeed or not.
Continue reading “Choose the blogging platform that is best for you”

Future, present and history of CMSs as told by CMS expert Deane Barker

Nov 11, 2013

Deane Barker’s childhood aspiration was to be an architect and today he is one – building content management solutions for his customers. He sees the emergence of decoupled content management and true multichannel publishing as current hot topics. Continue reading “Future, present and history of CMSs as told by CMS expert Deane Barker”

WordPress challenges Drupal in media sites

Oct 31, 2013

WordPress has a variety of different use cases, but it’s notable that many larger and smaller media sites have switched to WordPress during the last couple years. Even though Drupal was once the rising star, WordPress shines when pushing streams of content and showcasing the best articles visually. This recent development has especially affected the Drupal community, because just a few years ago Drupal was the rockstar child that every media company wanted to use. This doesn’t seem to be the case anymore. Continue reading “WordPress challenges Drupal in media sites”

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