My Webnode Reflection: A Very Useful CMS

30/03/2011 20:54

  Webnode provided an excellent framework to my project. It took away many hours of work because it supplied excellent templates for my website. It also provides an intuitive web-based GUI so that users of little web development experience can feel comfortable whilst using it. Webnode, just like any CMS, gives a lot of power to its user through interfaces they are most likely to have come across, for example, when editing a “Text and Images” box the GUI has a Microsoft Word look and feel to it. It also leaves you with the easy job of managing the content alone, as it is completely separated from the layout and style of the website.

  Furthermore, Webnode also has excellent features which make it stand out from a regular CMS. It had many accessibility features, such as an automatic breadcrumbs trail, and it allows for easy integration of useful widgets such as a Twitter feed. It also has a catalogue of widgets which can be used instantly, such as Webnode widgets like Tag Cloud to Google Maps and Paypal widgets. Other useful features include an RSS Feed widget, Lists, Photo Gallery and Poll. I did not use these as they were beyond the scope of my project.

  There are downsides to a CMS like Webnode however, especially for people like me who can code a website. I found that it was very restrictive in terms of adding extra styling to the website; Webnode does allow you to edit the CSS through the Template page but you have to stick to template defined styles such as page layout. Furthermore, some widgets and Webnode features were badly named and you could not change their name. For example, when trailing the Lists feature, the section of the page was always titled “Products”, which was not always appropriate.

  Also, it took some time to configure simple things such as whether certain pages were shown in the main menu or not. It was also disappointing to find that I could not implement some of the features IFurthermore, Webnode’s built in search facility is poor; it seems to rate pages in a way so that the page you expect to see first does not appear. Try searching “pen” on the site and see what I mean! Many irrelevant pages are returned higher than the page you might want.

  Overall, I think Webnode is a fantastic CMS which certainly brings a lot of simplicity to users who may not be experienced with web design and programming. It has many powerful and useful features which allows its’ users to create stunning websites quite easily. However, purely because of my experience, I would have preferred to code this website from scratch as I feel I’d have achieved more of what I wanted. I certainly rate this CMS, and would recommend it to friends as it is certainly one of the best CMS systems I have experienced.

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