At stage 2 we have our Template
ready and we are going to bring the site to life.
It's time to:
- commence Joomla setup
- configure the template
- lay the foundation for the content structure
- choose, acquire and install Extensions
- set up the base menu
Our customers almost always choose to host their site at Allora servers due to several factors:
- Ease of development and efficiency of support due to full access to the system for the developer.
- Reliability - we collocate our servers with CarolinaNET which provides tripple redundancy for Internet access; protection layer against Internet threats; physical security; climate control and power redundancy. Our servers are custom built with quality components carefully selected by Allora Network Engineers.
- Backup - multi-layered backup system assuring daily differential backups, archival of weekly snapshots of all sites and duplication of the backup files on independent servers.
- Performance - Allora strives to deliver robust, fast hosting platform. Unlike dirt-cheap, big hosting players like Blue Host or GoDaddy (Walmart and K-Mart of the hosting world) we can afford dedicating enough resources, bandwidth to all clients. We are also focusing on each customer's needs and, if necessary, adapt our system to specialty requirements. This is why our avarage load-time for a given site always beats nation-wide providers.
Regardless of the hosting platform chosen Allora technician would deploy the latest stable edition of Joomla system and configure its main settings.
Most templates require some configuration time to syncronize its parameters with the core of Joomla System. Typically it's a fast process but in case of in-depth template customizations we could face an extra hour of labor or so.
The latter usually provide functionality, interactivity or simply enrich the site with interesting visuals and information.
Often it is much easier for a client to engage in content development and get the ball rolling if the web designer assists with the framework of the content. Joomla (1.5) provides three tiers of organizing the content : Sections contain Categories, which contain Articles (which are basically individual pages displayed on the front-end of Joomla). Joomla 1.6 have unlimited amount of content levels. Allora would recommend an efficient way of translating the strucuture of your content into Joomla terms.
Customers who desire to take their web presence beyond the base level of a brochure type website always need to enrich the site with additional functionality. The prime reason of Joomla popularity and strength is its huge community of developers. One can browse thousands of Joomla Extensions, the majority of which are free. Let us name some extensions that we frequently work with:
- E-commerce - VirtueMart
- Slide Show - FrontPage Slide Show
- Organizational/Community tools - CiviCRM
- Blog - WordPress
- Map - Interactive Maps
- Document Library - JoomDoc
- Calendar - JEvents
- Donation campaigns - GoogleMoney, PayPal add-ons
- SEO tool - Scribe
Joomla is a Menu-driven CMS which basically means that most web-pages have a dedicated menu item (plus Search Engine friendly URL). One can have several menu's in Joomla and each menu can have sub-menu levels. Just like in case with the task of structuring the content our customer often ask us to help them a little to spin-up their menu systems. Once the basis is done it's much easier to further develop it.