Drupal solution vs custom development


What issue bothers you the most while figuring out to launch your own web-project? No doubt that is selection of development platform. An architectural decision you finally make will affect every aspect - its echo you will hear during your website life-cycle over and over again. So what to choose if your idea is to create something more complex and interesting than a promo site or a simple blog without any advanced features? Drupal content management framework is what we recommend (yes, that is exactly a framework using which you can build not only websites but whole content management systems). Are you looking for reasonable arguments? After years of practice and implementation of various projects answers seem obvious to us and we would like to share them with you:

1) High development pace, low starting budget price

Using the most common terms Drupal is a completed web-site itself. It should be just tuned and set up according to your needs and technical specifications. How to do it? How to add the functionality that is absent in out of the box solution? Thousands of modules implementing different features are at your disposal. They make development process of first project stages much faster and less time-consuming if comparing to manual coding process. Therefore project starting budget price descends as all the basic functionality is already at hand.

2) Flexibility in relations between customer and contractor

Human relationship is a complicated thing at all levels, isn’t it? Family, love, friendship, business - all these spheres sometimes have unpleasant nuances and ties have to be broken-off.. The peculiarity of custom development is that the process of handing project (code, data base, etc.) is extremely painful. Have you hear about the stereotype that there is no worse thing for any developer than to deal with another developer’s code? Than you can visit any IT forum and make sure that is not a stereotype. What is the difference with Drupal? If the previous team have made everything in an appropriate way, by Drupal standards, than it will take not much time for another team to delve into current situation and take over the project.

3) Site management is plain and clear

Developers and usability interface experts are different professions. You are really lucky if you manage to find a contractor who is good at both fields. But much more often developers complicate management interface without taking into consideration that it will be used by users who are not IT specialists. Drupal in its turn provides both clear interface and management tools out of the box.

4) System security

Sometimes custom website developers may not check its security: errors can be uncovered very slowly, in the worst cases it can be even too late. Drupal is supported by more than 20.000 developers from all over the world. There is a security-team whose mission is to constantly examine safety of both system core itself and the most popular modules. Thus Drupal-developer will be immediately warned with a system message if any vulnerability is detected. Everybody knows lots of examples of custom sites or servers hackings. Do you know at least one case of Drupal hacking? That’s what we are talking about)

Drupal benefits

1) Open source code, the system is absolutely free. Site can be developed by one team and supported by another.

2) Flexible architecture. System has module structure so all the additional functions are being switched on by installing, activating and setting these modules up. Any functionality can be implemented using this sequence.

3) Numerous community. Having appropriate skills anyone can contribute to system development and popularization: write a module, improve the system, provide user support.

Myths about Drupal

1) Drupal is a memory hog. That is true, but… What amount to consider as a resource-heavy? Let’s not live in the past century - those hardware characteristics which had been high-end solution than, today can barely be considered a minimum configuration. Nowadays one can hardly find server or hosting with PHP, MySQL and web server (mostly Apache and nginx) support that will not handle Drupal. We will offer you really Drupal-friendly hosting with all server settings optimized to perfectly fit Drupal websites.

2) Highly visited Drupal site runs slowly. Our experience allows to state - that is false. How do you think how many user does official website of White House receives? Arguments? Here they are: Drupal is integrated with such popular systems as MemcacheVarnish, etc. Those will make your site running much faster. Let’s not omit Boost module will provide at least double optimisation of static site load.

3) There are other systems simpler and better than Drupal. There are lots of such statements with very few arguments. The main weak point of this myth is that an ideal system (we use ‘system’ in a broad sense not restricted only by web-development area) is a utopia. Drupal, in its turn, is under process of constant improvement, amount of new modules is increased almost daily. This framework’s goal is simplify site development, optimize it and of course to make customer’s and contractor’s lives better.

We have made up our minds about this platform a long time ago. Do we and our clients regret? Unquestionably - no. And what we strive for is to help all those who doubt to make their ideas visible with Drupal!

P.S. Can all these guys be wrong? :)

5 votes, Rating: 5

Read also


Very often a lot of developers face the issue of flexible materials sorting on the site. One of the solutions to solve this issue is Radioactivity module. Learn more about this tool.


We use "Git Flow" repository operations model quite often in our work. Let’s consider the scheme in detail.


Changes in Drupal 8 have also affected the process of creating your own widgets and formatters. The new Plugin API significantly simplifies this procedure.


Continuing review of Panels module functionality, this blog deals with unique context creation with help of Chaos tool suite.


Some time ago we've learned how to develop ctools...

Need a quote? Let's discuss the project

Are you looking for someone to help you with your Drupal Web Development needs? Let’s get in touch and discuss the requirements of your project. We would love to hear from you.

Join the people who have already subscribed!

Want to be aware of important and interesting things happening? We will inform you about new blog posts on Drupal development, design, QA testing and more, as well news about Drupal events.

No charge. Unsubscribe anytime