Authors: Ijas Ansari, Thomas P. Thomas
Prepare for the latest from Drupal. The latest version of Drupal - Drupal 9 - will be released in June 2020. If you are on Drupal 6 or 7, you can either move to Drupal 8.8 now which is in all intents and purposes Drupal 9 itself and let it be auto-upgraded onto Drupal 9 or you can wait till the Drupal 9 release in June 2020 to do the upgrade [You should wait only if you want to deny your organization the benefits of Drupal 8 & 9 for another 6 months.]. The move to Drupal 8 will offer you a set of serious benefits for your Digital Transformation initiatives including preparedness for a world of mobility, intuitive content authoring experience, and great performance and speed. The next upgrade from Drupal 8.8 to Drupal 9 will be a simple affair like applying a regular security patch and will offer you a highly efficient codebase.
Read on to know more.
Drupal 8 was a watershed moment for Drupal with the move to include many Symfony components in its core. It offered tremendous benefits to site developers and site owners who are executing on their Digital Transformation plans. For Digital Transformation, content is considered to be the key link between business and customers and providing the right content at the right time to the right customer is the key to offering high-quality digital experience. This is exactly what Drupal 8 enables through its strategic priorities of content authoring experience, mobility, integrations, and performance capabilities. A detailing of these benefits are given below.
High-quality Content Authoring Experience: With the combined features of out of the box content types and powerful editorial interfaces available on desktop and mobile, Drupal 8 provides great flexibility for creating, modifying and presenting content.
Mobile-First Approach: Drupal 8 comes with responsiveness at its core. It is not only responsive for users it comes with a mobile-first approach but also for the content manager. With Drupal 8 you can even review and manage content from any device at any time.
Advanced Content Delivery Capability: Drupal offers content as a service approach that enables any content or configurations in Drupal 8/9 accessed via a web service. Various sources such as native mobile applications or smart TV apps can now directly connect to a Drupal 8/9 website.
Site Speed: In the fast-moving digital world, time has high value and every customer is expecting zero delays in accessing information or services online from businesses. With built-in caching modules and delivery of pages using the BigPipe technique, Drupal is able to serve the user with zero latency.
SEO Capabilities: Usage of HTML 5 in Drupal 8 makes it search bot friendly and will help you get indexed correctly. It also improves the overall performance of the website. Along with this, Drupal 8 offers built-in modules to enable and manage SEO on your website.
Continuous Innovation and Backward Compatibility of new drupal releases: Starting from version 8, Drupal will be providing continuous innovation and backward compatibility for new drupal minor releases. That means Drupal will release new features every 6 months as a minor release which will be backward compatible.
Multilingual Capabilities: The multilingual capabilities of drupal come in hand when you want to create sites in different languages. Basic functionalities and modules available in Drupal enable you to build websites in more than 90 languages easily.
Integration Capabilities: Drupal is equipped to seamlessly operate with adjacent technologies. It's APIs and external libraries make it interoperable with other enterprise applications such as CRM, Web Analytics, Digital Asset Management, and Multi-Channel Campaign Management.
Security: Drupal is a secure CMS and application framework that is designed to overcome OWASP’s top 10 web application security risks. It is the Drupal's security team and peer-reviewed code that makes Drupal the most secure Free and Open Source WebCMS available. Drupal 8 uses Twig, which is a secure theming engine, makes it many fold secure than the previous versions of Drupal.
If you are on a Drupal 6 or 7 version, you should seriously consider a move to Drupal 8.8 immediately which can be seamlessly upgraded onto Drupal 9 with zero effort.. Migration from Drupal 6 or 7 to Drupal 8 is a substantial effort but it will be worth every penny as it will not only help you bring in more traffic with its SEO friendliness but also help you deliver an ecstatic customer experience.
If you are already on Drupal 8, you just need to keep up with your updates and the migration will be done by June 2020. The move to Drupal 9 gives you the benefits that Drupal 8 has and you will have a system that is bereft of deprecated code with the latest version of Symfony and other libraries at its core. Drupal 9 is being created with the strategic priorities of cost reduction through automatic updates and configuration management. It prioritizes the beginner experience to attract more users by providing the best experience for the first time user and focuses on accessibility, inclusiveness, security, privacy, and interoperability to drive the open web and make Drupal the best in class content management system with flexible APIs.
With 13 years of experience in building large Drupal websites and as one of the six proud Drupal Association Signature Support Partners, we bring to you world-class digital consulting and implementation capabilities for all your Drupal requirements.
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