A softball question on Quora about using CMS in the Cloud. Easy call from the Buzzr perspective. http://www.quora.com/Who-has-had-positive-experiences-with-cloud-hosted-CMS-providers-they-will-share/answer/Ed-Sussman
Tag Archives: Drupal
Congratulations to Paul Smith’s College on their new website, created with the Buzzr Higher Education edition. You can seeit here.
The orignal design was created by mStoner.com, our partner in Buzzr Higher Ed. mStoner is the national leader in website design and strategy in the Higher Education market. We have an exclusive deal with mStoner to partner on websites for small colleges.
The Buzzr Higher Ed platform allows mStoner to offer small colleges their services at a fraction of the million dollar price tag typical for large university websites.
The sleek design was created by mStoner and is a beautifule example of the type of sophisticated website that can be created with Buzzr.
The Paul Smith’s College website introduces a host of new features, including content hierarchy, which allows the administrator to specify which pages and which widgets the content should appear on.
We’ll follow up soon with a longer blog post describing new features of the platform and the Paul Smith’s College website in particular.
Looking for a platform with easy e-commerce or commerce?
Two new websites recently launched on the Buzzr.com platform show off the latest features in the e-commerce suites. At KatanyaGolf.com, an established brand of high-end women’s apparel for golfing sells dozens of different styles of clothing. Each new product entry can be given multiple tags, and then pages can be deployed in moments around any one of those tags. e.g. sweaters, vests, accessories.
The website also features a handome new grid display of multiple items in the same category and a product display page that rivals any high end retailors website. Katanya chooses not to sell its products via a shopping cart, but if at any point they wish to start, shopping cart checkout can be added for any or all products.
The KatanyaGolf.com website continues to rapidly evolve as the owners decide their preferred direction for online commerce. The flexibility of Buzzr means the owners can easily implement changes and new features to the site. And they can manage the site day-to-day without the need for a tech team.
At KarelinasLeotards, the order of the day are very high end leotards for competitive girls and women’s sports, such as rythmic gymnastics and acrobatics. Karelinas using a tighter grid configuration for group display of its productrs and a one column product page that allows an unlimited amount of text and images to be diplayed (compared to a two column structure with tighter parameters but more information displayed higher on the page.)
Since Leotard prurchases can run into many thousands of dollars, Karelinas prefer to handle these orders offline. The brand also sells accessories and these can be purchased directly on the site via an online shopping cart.
The Buzzr commerce tools can also be used for online donations or ticket sales.
Did you know Buzzr has an advanced e-coupon feature available? Coupons can be viewed electroinically, via a print out, or via newsletters. Features include automated removal of the coupon from the site upon expiration date, templated graphic design and bar code insertion.
Here’s an example of a simple coupon created with the Buzzr tool set:
Here’s how it works:
First, you add promotional copy and an image.
Next, choose which store(s) to list on the coupon, the price and discount, if any, the valid date(s), right down to the hour. Then, any disclaimer text. There’s also an an option for bar code
Finally, choose whether to only publish on the site or also distribute via newsletter.
Announcing Buzzr Higher Education Edition with mStoner, Worldwide Leader in Academic Digital Consultants and Strategists
Buzzr has partnered with mStoner, the world leader in creating websites and digital strategies for higher education, to create the Buzzr Higher Education Edition. mStoner is offering the product to schools with a lower budget than is typically needed for major university sites, which can take 9 to 12 months to build.
We’re also offering a multi-site product for colleges and universities that want to make it easier, faster and much more inexpensive to roll out large numbers of websites for the university community. e.g. Faculty member websites, student organization websites.
The following blog post, with more details, was written by Bill Mclaughlin, the COO of mStoner, and originally appeared on the mStoner website:
mStoner + Buzzr = Hosted, Easy-to-Use, Drupal-Based CMS for HED
Our bread and butter project over the last ten years has been a campus-wide website redesign and implementation. Along the way, we’ve completed more projects like this than any other company in the world.
Within this type of project we provide end-to-end services, starting with an institution-wide web strategy, creative design, and configuration and customization of a web content management system (CMS). We never let our technical implementation constrain our strategy or creative process and, as a result, each project involves a high level of customization and an enterprise-wide CMS (we recommend Hannon Hill Cascade Server, Sitecore CMS, OmniUpdate OU Campus, Drupal, or TerminalFOUR Site Manager to our clients, depending upon their needs, and also explore other CMSs in certain cases).
We love these projects: each one is unique and challenging and we don’t see them going away in the future. But they take at least nine to twelve months and they’re expensive. And, after doing this work for more than a decade, we’ve noted a number of trends and market demands from our clients around their CMS needs:
- Many institutions that we talk with do not need a highly customized CMS implementation and often cannot afford or sustain one. Yet they benefit from the same level of strategic and creative consulting that we offer in a typical full-scale redesign.
- Drupal is a great CMS platform (by far the best open source option), well suited for higher education, and with significant and growing market share.
- BUT: Drupal doesn’t have a user-friendly back end, making it difficult for non-technical people to use.
In sum: A lot of our clients really need a simple, straight-forward version of Drupal with a simple back end. We looked for a solution and we even tried to build one ourselves. But we couldn’t find the time to do it right.
Buzzr, in partnership with Lullabot, a leader in Drupal training and implementation, developed software to optimize Drupal as a content management platform. Essentially, Buzzr enables non-technical users to manage their sites more effectively through a simple and elegant user interface using drag-and-drop tools. It can also support multiple sites on a single Drupal instance with shared users. Buzzr includes a QuickStart tool that makes creating new sites possible in a few clicks.
But what we like best about Buzzr is that there is absolutely no lock-in! Buzzr customers can opt-out at any time, export their site, and have it up and running as a “regular” Drupal site in short order.
We are excited to announce a partnership with Buzzr to build a Higher Ed Edition of the Buzzr platform. This partnership will marry Buzzr’s product development and deep Drupal expertise with mStoner’s years of experience in building highly functional and usable websites for colleges and universities.
For the right institutions, Buzzr offers something that these solutions do not. “We love that Buzzr can make it cheaper and easier for an institution to accomplish its mission,” said Ed Sussman, CEO of Buzzr. “What’s more, we think Buzzr’s slick user interface takes what was a chore – maintaining a website – and makes it more fun.”
The Buzzr Higher Ed Edition will be hosted at Rackspace and fully supported by mStoner on an ongoing basis in a Software as a Service (SaaS) model. mStoner designs will be built into the platform. We anticipate setting up pre-built feature tiers as well as tiered ongoing support plans.
For larger, more complex institutions who may already have a custom top-level site (especially a custom Drupal site), we see a role for Buzzr Higher Ed Edition as a user-friendly solution for managing the myriad unit-level sites on campus. These smaller sites are typically managed by occasional, non-technical CMS users who would greatly benefit from the Buzzr user interface. For the institution, Buzzr’s multi-site capability keeps these sites on-brand and enables them to be managed from a single, institution-specific platform.
Buzzr Higher Ed Edition is complementary to our existing services (not a threat to them). We remain 100% committed to helping our clients find the best-fit CMS platform for their unique needs and we will continue to partner with our friends at Hannon Hill, OmniUpdate, Sitecore and TerminalFOUR to deliver feature-rich, customized sites and CMS. Likewise, we will continue to build and support custom Drupal sites.
We are very excited about this opportunity as it will expand our ability to service the higher education market with our marketing and communications expertise. Be on the lookout for for future blog posts with updates on our progress.
EnergySipp.com co-founders Geoff Lynch and Carmela Rea wanted a Drupal-powered website to run their new digital publishing company. But they didn’t want to invest the tens of thousands of dollars (or more) that Drupal development firms typically charge to set up a professional publishing website.
Geoff and Carmela came to Buzzr. my company, and talked us through their vision. They wanted someone else to handle the technology, so he cold focus on publishing compelling information about money-saving green products, from smart cars to light bulbs. And he wanted to be able to publish his website day-to-day without the need for an in-house developer.
By using Buzzr and our Build It For Me services, Geoff and Carmela got the benefit of our highly experienced design and Drupal team, working on a streamlined, hosted social publishing platform tailored specifically for regular people who would find straight Drupal too intimidating. Geoff has a Gold Edition package, which means he was able to work with us to integrate additional features not already available on Buzzr.com’s standard feature set (now made up 195 modules.)
In the case of EnergySipp, Geoff and Carmela needed display advertising. We’ve started him off with a new feature for running Google Ad Sense display ads. We’ll roll out that feature to the rest of Buzzr.com in the spring. But it’s available to our Build It For Me customers right now.
Our guess is Geoff spent about 1/20th of what he’d have been charged to set up an equivalent site using a regular development firm creating a website from scratch, integrating and customizing dozens of modules one at a time. Instead, we used the Buzzr system of one-click deployment Quickstarts tailored for specific verticals, already packaged up with hundreds of features. We’re still able to create a completely custom layout and design, and turn features on and off with a couple of clicks.
Even with the site launched, Buzzr is staying in the picture. Our Gold Edition service includes performance monitoring, feature upgrades, training and personal support.
Check out the site at http://energysipp.com