Drupal: Giving a new dimension to Omnichannel marketing
BY Nisha.Oommen
2 years ago
comments comment

Businesses are engaging in different innovative strategies to develop and deliver various digital marketing experiences across the market. Marketing strategies are spirally evolving. From a personal door to door marketing concept, the strategy has moved to wider mass marketing while delivering personalized content. Omnichannel marketing is about providing this experience consistently over all channels.

Omni comes from the word “omnis” which means universal, i.e present everywhere. Omnichannel marketing is this ability to provide a resonating experience across various touchpoints including but not limited to smartphones, tablets etc. This is not about a multichannel digital experience of the social, mobile and web, alone but indulges in a wider experience.

To deliver a consistent message across omnichannels, businesses are using Content Management Systems that have Open Source technology. This makes for well maintained and clean content management. The Content Management System needs to be agile, flexible, scalable and easy to integrate to accommodate evolving digital marketing technologies while supporting the present day business marketing tools.

Drupal, especially the latest version, Drupal 8 provides a great omnichannel marketing experience that helps manage and deliver content across channels and devices.
Drupal 8 platform has more than 200 new built-in features in its Core.

Drupal 8 and Omnichannel opportunities

The key features in Drupal 8 which supports omnichannel are:

Easy Content Authoring: Drupal 8 supports inline editing with Sparks. Using Ajax, contents can be updated fast without having to refresh the whole page.

Responsiveness: The responsive web design capability of Drupal 8 gives another dimension to omnichannel marketing. This allows for consistent content marketing no matter what screen the customer is viewing. Also, the mobile customer can get relevant feedback via social media, text and other messaging channels.

Multilanguage Capability: Drupal 8’s multi-language capability has opened a new realm of possibilities to the omnichannel strategy of being everywhere.

Channel Optimization: Through Google analytics of the website and various other omnichannels, the marketing strategy can be revised or revamped where needed.

Eco System for better Integrations: Integrate API’s from third parties to orchestrate an enhanced context driven marketing. Omnichannel marketing implements better business performances that enhances an organization’s brand value.

Omnichannel marketing is powerful. Businesses that employ the omnichannel strategy think long term and plan strategically to reach the consumers through various touch points. Forrester’s Michelle Beeson states that ”Even retailers with higher overall omnichannel scores still have a disconnect between touch points to address.”

Comprehending the omni-channel strategies, their operational applications and implications are key to a successful business marketing roadmap. Successful organizations create a consistent experience across different touch points and create an omnichannel facility to implement the same.

We, at Zyxware, have been providing Drupal solutions to various enterprises for the last decade. Give us a call to know more about our Drupal development services and the latest opportunities in Drupal 8 to overcome the challenges of omni-channeling marketing.

Omnichannel digital Experience- Acquia
What is omnichannel?
Forrester blog on Omnichannel



on 21st May 2013 / by Anoop John
Drupal 6 will be maintained till the release of Drupal 8. Drupal 8 release is expected to happen towards the end of 2013. The current stable branch Drupal 7 will be maintained till the release of Drupal 9 (probably 2015). If you are running a production site on Drupal 6 then you will probably have to start looking at upgrading the site by the end of this year. There are couple of different options open in front of you if you are looking to upgrade your Drupal 6 site soon. If the site does not use a lot of custom functionalities and uses minimal contributed module functionalities and you are not really interested in contributing towards migrating Drupal 7 modules to Drupal 8 then you could just go ahead and upgrade your Drupal 6 site to Drupal 7. This could be done anytime you have the budget to do this. If you are interested in contributing towards migrating Drupal 7 contrib modules to Drupal 8 then you could wait a bit and then migrate your Drupal 6 site into Drupal 8 by the time Drupal 8 is released. You could start on the work a few months before the release date of Drupal 8. If the site does have a lot of custom functionalities as opposed to contributed module functionalities then you should really be looking to migrate to Drupal 8. Work on this could be started as soon as we have an RC version of Drupal 8. You will however have to be prepared to contribute towards migrating some of the Drupal 7 modules to Drupal 8 as it would take a while before top 100 contributed modules have Drupal 8 versions. If you are not sure about which version of Drupal you should upgrade your site to do get in touch with us and we can help you make that decision for you. Do note that this is a time sensitive article written in May 2013 and the opinions cited in this article may not be relevant after a few months from writing this article. The concepts would still hold though. Contact us to get our recommendation on what version of Drupal should you be upgrading your site to. Drupal Drupal 6 Drupal Upgrade Drupal 7 Drupal 8 Leave a reply Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marker *

on 26th December 2014 / by abhai.sasidharan
YAML is a data serialization language which is easily readable to both humans and computers. It is for this very reason that YAML is being used in Drupal 8. YAML stands for YAML Ain't Markup Language. This is what a Drupal 8 module.info.yml file would look like : name: Zyx Module description: Zyx Module description. ;This is how you comment. Description field is mandatory. package: Custom type: module version: 1.0 core: 8.x dependencies: - node This is how a theme is defined in theme.info.yml file : name: Zyx type: theme description: 'A zyx theme.' package: Custom core: 8.x stylesheets: all: - css/layout.css print: - css/print.css stylesheets-remove: - normalize.css regions: header: Header content: Content sidebar_first: 'Sidebar first' footer: Footer This is how permissions are set in Drupal 8 YAML : # In views.permissions.yml file. access all views: title: 'Bypass views access control' description: 'Bypass access control when accessing views.' restrict access: TRUE This is how routing is set in Drupal 8 YAML : demo.page: path: /demo defaults: _title: 'Demo' _content: '\Drupal\demo\Controller\DefaultController::demo' requirements: _permission: 'access demo content' YAML files are parsed by Yaml.php in Drupal 8. It is a symfony component. Another reason to use YAML is because, .info files are Drupal specific and YAML is a created to provide data serialization. In Drupal 8, not just info files but permissions, routing and settings configuration are also defined in YAML format now. Earlies this was accomplished in the .module file. This makes the code more lean. To describe it in two words, compartmentalization and delegating. Drupal Drupal 8 Leave a reply Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marker *

on 29th December 2014 / by abhai.sasidharan
Drupal, up until now a PAC (Presentation Abstraction Control) architecture, has taken a step closer to MVC (Model View Controller) architecture. Although nowhere have they mentioned about MVC, the new Drupal 8 is strictly object oriented. Another feature in Drupal 8, that is different from the existing versions of Drupal is that it is not entirely Drupal. Drupal 8 uses many components in symfony like it's ClassLoader, YAML file structure, twig and so on. For a detailed description please visit the Drupal 8 home page. In this article, I will explain how to convert an existing Drupal 7 module to Drupal 8. In Drupal 7, the first steps you follow to create a module is Create a <module name>.info file Create a <module name>.module file Create a <module name>.install file if a schema is required These are the basic steps for a simple module creation. Plugins, css, images, etc can be added as required. This is basically the same in Drupal 8 except we have to follow a yaml file structure in Drupal 8. The <module name>.info file should be renamed as <module name>.info.yml. Say, for a module zyx, if the zyx.info file in Drupal 7 was : name = ZYX description = Some module to something. package = ZYX core = 7.x files[] = zyx.module files[] = zyx.install ; Information added by Drupal.org packaging script on 2013-12-12 version = "7.x-3.0" core = "7.x" project = "zyx" datestamp = "1386880109" In Drupal 8, the zyx.info.yml would be : name: ZYX description: 'Some module to something.' package: ZYX core: 8.x version: 7.x-3.0 project: zyx datestamp: '1386880109' type: module After the <module name>.info.yml file has been defined, you can go to the extend page in your Drupal site and see that the module has appeared in Drupal 8. The <module name>.install and <module name>.module files remain where they are. The schema definition remains unchanged in Drupal 8. The .module file has many changes which we will discuss now. Firstly, hook_menu has been replaced in Drupal 8 by another yml file called <module name>.routing.yml. This is also a requisite for Drupal 8 module. Clear the hook_menu and move it with corresponding yml syntax to the <module name>.routing.yml file in the root of the module folder : In Drupal 7 : <?php function zyx_menu() { $items = array(); $items['zyx/one'] = array( 'title' => 'Zyx entry', 'description' => 'Enter zyx info into database', 'page callback' => 'Drupal_get_form', 'page arguments' => array('zyx_form'), 'access arguments' => array('access zyx content'), 'type' => MENU_NORMAL_ITEM, ); } In Drupal 8 : zyx.routing.yml zyx.form: path: /zyx/one defaults: _title: 'Zyx entry' _form: \Drupal\zyx\Form\ZyxForm requirements: _permission: 'access zyx content' As you can see in the yml file, the path to the form is defined and we notice another difference, which is the form definition has been moved from the .module file to a class in the form folder. We have to create a folder structure in the module folder to implement the MVC part of Drupal 8 i.e., module/ src/ Controller/ Form/ !-- Each form should be in a separate ClassName.php file. If any. Plugin/ Block/ !-- If any. <module name>.module <module name>.routing.yml <module name>.menu.links.yml <module name>.info.yml <module name>.permissions.yml <module name>.install This is standard for all Drupal modules. This is the PSR-4 compatible folder structure (Confer with PSR documentation). The form should be defined in a php file in the Form folder. This is the controller for the form. An example would be, in this case, "ZyxForm.php". Delete the form definition in <module name>.module file and copy it into the controller class definition in the form folder making the changes like below. The form definition for this would be : <?php /** * @file * Contains \Drupal\zyx\Form\ZyxForm. */ namespace Drupal\zyx\Form; use Drupal\Core\Form\FormBase; use Drupal\Core\Form\FormStateInterface; use Drupal\Core\Render\Element; class Zyx extends FormBase { /** * {@inheritdoc} */ public function getFormId() { return 'zyx_form'; } public function buildForm(array $form, FormStateInterface $form_state) { $form['zyx_data'] = array( '#type' => 'textfield', '#title' => t('Data'), '#size' => 30, '#maxlength' => 200, '#description' => t('Zyx data.'), '#required' => TRUE, ); $form['submit'] = array( '#type' => 'submit', '#value' => t($submit), ); return $form; } public function validateForm(array &$form, FormStateInterface $form_state) { //Code to validate here. Same as Drupal 7. } public function submitForm(array &$form, FormStateInterface $form_state) { //Code to submit here. Same as Drupal 7. } } Secondly, permissions are no longer set inside the .module file itself. You have to include a .permissions.yml file. In Drupal 7 : <?php /** * Implements hook_permission(). * * Access and view content defined. */ function zyx_permission() { return array( 'access zyx content' => array( 'title' => t('Access content for the Zyx module'), ), ); } In Drupal 8 : zyx.permissions.yml 'access zyx content': title: 'Access content for the Address book module' Thirdly, menu links are a separate file named <module name>.lniks.menu.yml unlike Drupal 8 which included it in the hook_menu itself. It is as follows : zyx.form: route_name: zyx.form title: 'Zyx Entry' description: 'Enter zyx info into database' parent: zyx.page Fourthly, any custom page defined in the <module name>.module will also have to be removed from the <module name>.module file. This will have to be moved to the controller folder as a Controller class similar to how form was done only difference is the class to extend : <?php /** * @file * Contains \Drupal\zyx\Controller\DefaultController. */ namespace Drupal\zyx\Controller; use Drupal\Core\Controller\ControllerBase; use Drupal\Core\Url; /** * Default controller for the zyx module. */ class ZyxController extends ControllerBase { //Custom page function(s) here. Copy the functions and from <module name>.module and place it here. } Finally, blocks are implemented as plugins in Drupal 8. If you look at the folder structure mentioned above, you can see that in the plugin folder there is block folder. This is because blocks are no longer defined in the conventional style; hook_block_info(), hook_block_view() have been deprecated. Your block definitions should be in another controller class similar to form. An example : ZyxChow.php <?php /** * @file * Contains \Drupal\zyx\Plugin\Block\ZyxChow. */ namespace Drupal\zyx\Plugin\Block; use Drupal\Core\Block\BlockBase; /** * Provides the ZyxChow block. * * @Block( * id = "zyx_chow", * admin_label = @Translation("Zyx's Chow") * ) */ class ZyxChow extends BlockBase { /** * {@inheritdoc} */ public function build() { // Code to create a block. Just like Drupal 7. //Return a renderable array; } } Here, the @block part in the comment section is a mandatory. It defines the machine name and name of the block. These are the basic things to be changed in a Drupal 7 module to make it work in a Drupal 8 installation. A few key things to remember while migrating to Drupal 8 are the PSR-4 folder compatibility, YAML file and correct syntax to use, all paths should be defined in routing YAML file. Migrating a module to Drupal 8 can be very long and tedious due to the vast differences from Drupal 7 to Drupal 8. There is another way to migrate modules to Drupal 8, which is using a Drupal 8 module called Drupal module upgrader. This module is in its development stages and does the converting fine for modules with a simple file structure, although it is found to be buggy when migrating projects with more than one modules like the coder or devel module. Resources: Drupal 7 to 8 Drupal Drupal 8 Leave a reply Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marker *
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