What is beyond Drupal 8?: WEM (Web Experience Management)

Photography by Tim Miller

And what exactly does WEM do, or what does it involve?

WEM aims to provide extraordinary user experiences to website visitors that lead to your visitors taking a desired action – from reading a certain content to playing a certain game to buying a certain product. WEM will also measure how effective various user experiences are, so as to make improvements as and when needed.

Today, it is estimated that about 2% of all web sites are running on Drupal. As a first step, will it be possible to achieve a 10% share of the market?

Well, Dries certainly thinks so. He points out that Firefox and Linux have a 25% and 20% market share in their respective markets.

And Dries is foreseeing a future where the likes of Amazon (the largest e-Commerce site in the world), CNN (the largest news web site) and Apple (the most valuable technology company) all run Drupal. Mere daydreaming? I, for one, certainly do not think so and believe that it is very much achievable.

But one needs to acknowledge the formidable challenges we face in achieving that target.
To understand why it has not happened until now, we must first identify what Drupal currently lacks.

According to Dries big sites need complete solutions for three major areas:

  • Content
  • Community
  • e-Commerce

And these three requirements need to be address together, instead of each being addressed separately.

Governments and businesses generally seek to serve people better, share information, improve sales or provide complete education solutions.
Most organisations use their web sites to

attract new clients through their content. They seek to engage them, influence them and finally convert them. In the case of Drupal it may include users coming to the Drupal site, getting Drupal downloaded, contributing to Drupal, attending Drupalcon and so on.

All types of businesses want this process to occur in a big way. A web site is no longer about just content and information.

Web sites should also be able to effectively use and manage user generated content and emails. They need to be integrated with CRM and Marketing automation solutions so as to try to analyse what user do during their visit. This will help in converting them and will help grow the business.

For example, if a person visiting Drupal.org keeps looking for coding issues, she may be assumed to be a programmer. The website should be able to identify visitors and guide them so as to convert them. For a programmer, the conversion may involve getting him to come to code sprint. Emails can also target users according to their preferences, instead of being sent a general email.

A businessperson who is interested in use cases, for example, can be directed to relevant area and sent only relevant emails. In the same way, designers need to be directed Similarly to relevant tutorials and information that interests them.

Web Experince Management includes Multichannel, Personalisation, Analytics, SEO and Digital Asset Management

Dries also mentioned that many of the great press release solutions are costly propriety software. Drupal should be able to handle all these in the future.

At present Drupal is good with
Multi Chanel, SEO, User generated content and so on, but what does it really lack to offer WEM?

Some of them are listed below:

  • Email

    Dedicated systems like

    Exact Target and Mail Chimp are available in the market. Drupal community needs to build good integration of these for Drupal.

  • CRM

    There are many CRM integration currently available with Drupal. But most of the integration has not been done in the best way.

    So Drupal needs better integration solutions for some of the better CRMs in the market such as Netsuite, Salesforce, Civicrm, Sugarcrm etc.

  • Marketing Automation

    Drupal need better integration with marketing solutions such as Marketo, Eloqua and Manticore.

  • E-commerce

    To our delight Dries mentioned only two e-commerce solutions for integration with Drupal: NetSuite and Magento.

    Web Gardens has been working with Magento from the early days of Magento and our team is pretty good with Magento.

    Some of our team members are also Certified Magento Developers.

  • Digital Asset Management

    Organisations have a plethora of digital assets like images, videos, pdfs etc. that are used across multiple web sites. The system should able to manage them all well.

    Dries explained that there are many existing modules that are ready for integration. But many of them will need to be fine-tuned to bring about good results.

    So for a better Web Experience Management we need an ecosystem formed by collaborating with different solutions in the market.

    Finally to summarise Web Experience Management, at the centre of it all comes Content, Community and Commerce.

    At the next level comes User generated content, email, CRM, Marketing automation, Multi channel, Personalization, Analytics, SEO and DAM.

    Presently, at the second level, Drupal has addressed many of the challenges in Multi channel, SEO and User generated content.

    Dries hopes to address the rest of the challenges at the second level in 201x.

    We sure have a long way to go!

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