I was thinking last night about a way to find other Drupal sites out there... and here it is... I searched for some Drupal footprint

If you guys have time to surf... you might want to post your findings (And reviews) here :)

I want to kick off a list of the best sites out there... keep it informative so we have somewhere to look when we need ideas when making websites!

I'll start it off:

Linux Professional's Association | Linux for Professionals

http://www.lpa.org.za/
Rating: 7/10
Review:
Nice and practical. Perhaps a good model to emulate if you would like to implement Drupal for simple informational websites for clients or yourself.

Bluffton Today / BlufftonToday.com: It's what people are talking about .... Bluffton, South Carolina

http://www.blufftontoday.com/
Rating: 9/10
Review:
A newspaper website.
Very modified! Very well designed and thought out website.
Has a subdomain setup with Drupal e.g. http://extras.blufftontoday.com/movies/chickenlittle.html
A good layout for the modified fontpage. I suspect phpsnippets.
The classifieds isn't Drupal though. Nor is the directory: http://yellowweb.blufftontoday.com/

Hope you guys find this useful...

Comments

yelvington’s picture

Thanks for the 9/10 rating. Bluffton Today's homepage is delivered by the front_page.module. Some link clusters are manually maintained (too simple to really need a tool), others, like the movie listings and photo clusters, are pulled from XML feeds and cached. Event links are a "live" php snippet hitting the database. The stuff on extras.blufftontoday.com actually comes from Morris proprietary technology (as do the classifieds).

BT was a runner-up last week in the Online News Association annual contest small-site general excellence category. First place went to NewWest.net, which runs pMachine. But then, it's not really about the technology. :-)

I was on a panel at the Citizens Media Summit last month discussing technology platforms, and the Newspaper Association of America covered it.

Right now we're working on a couple of other projects that may use Drupal interacting with a number of other technologies. You can accomplish a lot using XML as "glue" between systems.

Marco Palmero’s picture

Congratulations on the awards - you deserve it. I'm actually astounded that the author of the site actually reads the forums and that he actually stumbled on my post?!

What exactly is morris technology? can't seem to find it...

So I guess I wasn't the right track with you installing Drupal on subdomains?

It's great how you pull information from XML feeds - are these internal to your website or pulling them from external feeds? (which module does this in drupal?)

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My Blog - Photography, travelling and University...

yelvington’s picture

I don't run Bluffton Today (I am corporate overhead) but I am one of the people responsible for making it what it is.

Morris is a communications company whose products include newspapers, magazines, broadcasting, books, and technology services:

http://www.morris.com/
http://www.morrisdigitalworks.com/

The XML feeds are coming from external sources, and are processed through fairly simple PHP snippets. The PEAR XML_Serializer package makes this really, really easy, pretty much as if you had PHP5 and simplexml installed. Grab any local or remote XML file, then you can print_r the results to see the array structure with all the labels intact.

http://pear.php.net/package/XML_Serializer/

Marco Palmero’s picture

CUCBC Online

http://www.cucbc.org/
Rating: 6/10
Review:
Rowing site for a University group.
- Modified menu system
- Intersting use of the right sidebar to tell people if an event is on or not using a flag system
- Clean website design

Welcome to AVI - AIDS Vancouver Island

http://www.avi.org/
Rating: 6.5/10
Review:
- A modification of the blue marine theme - well done IMHO
- Practical website design - nice colour scheme and top banner
- Seems to receive a fair amount of hits "67285" for Nov 05 it claims

my.epilepsy.com

http://my.epilepsy.com/
Rating: 6/10
Review:
- A place to read, write and live with epilepsy
- A modification of chameleon/marvin/style.css
- Nice colour scheme and logo
- well spaced out
- Nice menus

Your Democracy | democracy is not a spectator sport

http://www.yourdemocracy.net.au/drupal/
Rating: 4/10
Review:
- This is an example of how not to design a Drupal site or any website for that matter
- Site colour scheme is not appealing
- Although information provided is practical and useful
- Website seems to have an active membership

Bril Band

Rating: 5.5/10
Review:
Interesting use of a flash frontpage/top banner and using Drupal as the backbone of the information system.
Colours are drab - but I guess it fits their target audience (!)
http://brilband.com/news (The drupal section of their site)

MENSA Singapore

http://www.mensa.org.sg/
Rating: 6/10
Review:
- This theme should look familiar to everyone. A modified Kubrick theme. Works well.
- Nice popup menus for the sidebars. BUT it is javascript and is not linked with the Drupal system (I suspect) hence not updated as you update the relevant menu blocks. I think there is a CSS solution to this.
- Uses an image map html function for links in the top right of the header banner.

NetworkWorld.com Community

http://www.networkworld.com/community/
Rating: 6/10
Review:
- Looks ok
- The hot topics to the right breaks the page design...
- code suggests it is a bluemarine modification - if it is - its not very apparent (the changed colour scheme and sizes does it) I still think the AIDS vancouver site does a better job of it.

PDX Adventure Racer

http://www.pdxadventureracer.com/
Rating: 8/10
Review:
"PDX Adventure Racer provides greater Portland Oregon metro area Adventure Racers with a resource for teammate finding, knowledge, skills, tips and tricks, training, and general socialization. We are a free club with several hundred members all dedicated to the sport of Adventure Racing"

- Love the search bar (it has a nice graphic styled around it)
- I have a sneaking suspicion they ported over a theme from elsewhere. (Dont know which one though)
- Very nice community site feel.
- They've got this java thing going when you hover over links

Asian Lovers (No adult content)

http://www.asianlovers.net/
Rating: 9/10
Review:
A drupal dating website!

HOLY CRAP you've got to look at the design of this website... THIS IS DRUPAL!?!?

Talk about great graphics and a great theme!

And this designer probably did a lot of modifying to get what they wanted.

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My Blog - Photography, travelling and University...

venkat-rk’s picture

Interesting exercise. Thanks for the effort.

I know it may be asking too much but if you could go a step further and submit the better ones to the Drupal showcase section, they wouldn't get lost on the forums.

Marco Palmero’s picture

Isn't this the drupal showcase forum?

Is there another page I don't know about?

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My Blog - Photography, travelling and University...

dparsons62’s picture

I have taken over a website that was established in 2001. The website sells Natural Handmade Soaps. The original website was developed using Coldfusion and static HTML, and really was not optimized to be found in the search engines. The site's ranking in Google with a phrase like "handmade soap" was over 157,000. I re-developed the website in Drupal, with attention to Search Engine Optimization as I designed the structure and content. Within the first week of making the switch over, I had a ranking of 369 for the website home page on the term "handmade soap". By that time only a few of the new pages in the website had been re-indexed in Google. We will see if I get first page ranking after Google indexes the rest of the site, but from my analysis, I believe I stand a very good chance. I evaluated many of the other CMS solutions, and Drupal seemed to be the most compatible with SEO techniques. You can see the website at DaisySoap.com. I think Drupal is one of the best web CMS solutions out there. - Don

craigpet’s picture

Don,
Nice job on the site. I checked your search engine saturation and you have 22 pages in Google, 18 in Yahoo, and 50 in MSN.

I am also considering switching my ecommerce site to Drupal, but am concerned about my rankings.

Could you please confirm that you used flexinode for the product pages especially the options?

Thanks,
Craig

dparsons62’s picture

Thank you.

No, I did not use flexinode, I had not noticed it. I am going to check it out now that you called it to my attention. I embedded PHP code in the node. To make the solution more elegant, I really should move the code into a custom module. I kind of did it quick-n-dirty. I had tested the e-commerce module that is available for Drupal, but it kept getting in the way of some of the SEO stuff I wanted to do. I did install the PayPal framework to be able to handle PayPal IPN. My PHP code pulls product data from a product table I created, and dynamically generates the PayPal "add to cart" buttons. One advantage to the way I have done this is that I have more flexibility of where I put information, which for SEO is vital. I have plans for how I can move my soltuion to a Drupal module.

The options that we have in the Gift Sets section took some extra work. PayPal allows only two options. A bunch of the gift sets we offer need more than 2. So I have included all of the options I need in
menus that PayPal does not pay attention to, and I use a JavaScript function to combine them into the two PayPal options fields with a comma delimited list of the options selected. The function is called by onsubmit for the form. It actually works pretty well. My PHP code dynamically creates hidden fields that I stuff information into so I can pass to the JavaScript function to make life easier.

I would rather use a fairly full featured shopping cart module in Drupal, but that has not be developed (to my knowledge) that works well with SEO. I keep re-checking the e-commerce module.

One thing I REALLY like about Drupal is the URL aliasing. You can not only simplify your URLs, you can also put keywords in them. That is a major plus. For Google I would use "-" instead of "_" as word separators.

An important thing to do is use "301 URL Permanently Changed" response for your old URLs, and provide the new Drupal URLs. That will get the Search Engines to update their links. However, there will be links in a lot static links in other websites that won't be updated, so your redirects will be there for a long time. There is information on Drupal.or about how to redirect traffic. Then watch your access logs for ones you may have missed.

Don

dparsons62’s picture

Some more information you might want to consider if you are contemplating moving to Drupal (or any CMS). Earlier this year I gave a presentation to a group in an Internet Marketing workshop. Below are links to the PowerPoint presentation I used (converted to PDF), and the notes that go along with it (also a PDF). The topic of the presentation was the value of using a CMS for those that are developing an SEO e-commerce website. Drupal was the one that I focused most on because it is (IMHO) the "high water mark" for CMS solutions for those wanting to SEO their website. The notes focus more on the segment of my presentation that focused on RSS and the value that offers to Internet Marketing since RSS is a standard feature of most CMS solutions.

http://www.small-business-consultants.net/Downloads/web_marketing/CMS_DR...
http://www.small-business-consultants.net/Downloads/web_marketing/CMS%20...

The presentation was targeted to an audience that was very diverse. There were a couple of hosting admin and web programmer types, down to a few that can just spell HTML. Most were somewhere in between those extremes.

Don

cmsproducer’s picture

The topic of Search Engine Optimization/SEO for Drupal-based websites is the subject of another forum discussion
http://drupal.org/node/20033

This will be of use to others who are running or are considering Drupal for their CMS needs.
Also, here are some useful content on various stages of implementing Drupal websites with consideration to Search Engine Optimisation.

_________________________________________________________________
iDonny - Web CMS Development, Design, and Web Marketing Advice

chx’s picture

I bet there are at least that many where you can not.
--
Read my developer blog on Drupal4hu.

--
Drupal development: making the world better, one patch at a time. | A bedroom without a teddy is like a face without a smile.

alexandreracine’s picture

...and there are those that are not in English :)

Alexandre Racine

Marco Palmero’s picture

Yes I acknowledge that... I guess this is the only page that you can tell that it definitely is drupal...

Of course it wont find sites that havent linked to their login pages...

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My Blog - Photography, travelling and University...

agentrickard’s picture

Everything on extras.blufftontoday.com is being run out of the MDW publishing system that Steve links to above.

The more interesting Drupal trick is the username subdomain mod-rewrite patch that Steve wrote. Example below.

--
http://ken.blufftontoday.com/

Marco Palmero’s picture

Can we please see the mod rewrite patch?
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My Blog - Photography, travelling and University...

yelvington’s picture

Actually I didn't write it, one of our Perl geeks did. Regex makes my eyeballs bleed.


   RewriteCond %{HTTP_HOST} ^.+\.([^\.]+)\.blufftontoday\.com$ [NC]
   RewriteRule ^(.*)$ http://www.blufftontoday.com/blog/%1

   RewriteCond %{HTTP_HOST} ^([^\.]+)\.blufftontoday\.com$ [NC]
   RewriteCond %{HTTP_HOST} !^www\.blufftontoday\.com$ [NC]
   RewriteRule ^(.*)$ http://www.blufftontoday.com/blog/%1

 

I think the first rule transforms
anything1.anything2.blufftontoday.com
into
www.blufftontoday.com/blog/anything1.

And the second transforms
anything-but-www.blufftontoday.com
into
www.blufftontoday.com/blog/anything-but-www

To get the rest of the story, google "wildcard DNS"

Marco Palmero’s picture

Oneword Radio

http://www.oneword.co.uk
8/10
Some minor comments http://drupal.org/node/37222#comment-68059
otherwise another one of those sites where you cry "This is actually drupal?!"

The secret is in the theming. It is simple and does a good job. Colours selected just "work" together.

Practical. This site demonstrates the KISS principle in web design.
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Blog - Sydney News, Current Affairs, Photography, Travelling & University...

dparsons62’s picture

If you really want to find a lot of the Drupal based websites out on the Internet as examples, conduct a search in Google or Yahoo using the phrase "add new comment". A large number of websites that will be in the results listing will be Drupal websites. There are some interesting ones that I had not otherwise found.

- Don

Marco Palmero’s picture

Thanks...

Google search using "add new comment"

yep still doesn't cover all drupal pages (but I guess you can't suss out every one!

So this search covers the one that have enabled comments, the previous search covered the websites with login.

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Blog - Sydney News, Current Affairs, Photography, Travelling & University...

sepeck’s picture

you could search for drupal.css

-sp
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Test site, always start with a test site.
Drupal Best Practices Guide -|- Black Mountain

-Steven Peck
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Test site, always start with a test site.
Drupal Best Practices Guide

dparsons62’s picture

I tried your suggestion. It seemed to bring up pages that had "drupal.css" in the page content, I did not find cases in which it keyed on "drupal.css" in the source code. Too bad... that would have been a sure fire way to find almost all of them.

Don - DaisySoap.com (Handmade Soap, Lip Balm, Gift Ideas)

Marco Palmero’s picture

I've posted a summary of websites I've reviewed here:

Google can find 54,700 drupal websites out there

____________________________________________________________________________
Blog - Sydney News, Current Affairs, Photography, Travelling & University...

Heine’s picture

Can't see the post on that link. Can find it on a slightly longer URL though.

I was thinking last night about a way to find other Drupal sites out there... and here it is... I searched for some Drupal footprint - So this search covers the one that have enabled comments, the previous search covered the websites with login.

The websites with login in english.

--
Tips for posting to the forums

Marco Palmero’s picture

The URL changed again...

Google can find 54,700 drupal websites out there

I've been having trouble with my hosting service - so I've switched in the past week and suffered a huge data loss.

Thank God I only lost about a weeks worth of data.

marcopolo ---
Blog | Photography | Sydney | Celebrities | Best Designed Drupal Websites | Share Trading |