Have you ever admired the style and layout of a website and thought, "I wish I could have a site like that!" Well, it may not be as difficult as you think.
Around ¾ of the top 1 million websites use one of three popular CMS or Content Management Systems. These are Joomla, Wordpress and Drupal. Wordpress, being the oldest of these systems, currently has the largest market share, however the majority of Wordpress sites are blogging sites. This popularity comes largely from its ease-of-use from an administration perspective.
Joomla is the next most popular and is poised to dominate the market with the improvements of current Joomla version 3.0 and the upcoming version 3.5 which raise the level of simplicity in the back-end up to the level of Wordpress. Where Wordpress is largely a blogging platform, Joomla is a true CMS and is powerful enough and flexible enough to run any type of website with the right development. Drupal is more complex and therefore less popular than Joomla or Wordpress.
With millions upon millions of websites running on these platforms, there is a decent chance that the website you admire is one of them. What looks like it might have cost tens of thousands of dollars to design and create could be yours for a very moderate price.
Let's say you're a well-known business and you have an attractive and feature-rich website that runs on a CMS that anyone can have. There's an image that many companies wish to maintain and they don't like to make it public that their website is built on a free CMS with templates and extensions that could be purchased for a minimal price. That's why you don't see Joomla featured on the footers of many government websites or businesses such as IKEA, eBay's employee portal, McDonalds or Pizza Hut. We've featured a couple of Joomla run websites in our blog before, such as the Eiffel Tower, Peugeot and linux.com.
So how can you find out (1) what popular CMS your favourite websites might be running and (2) if they're running Joomla, what templates they use.
The first step is to see if you can find their administration back-end.
To check for Joomla, type /administrator at the end of the home page url
To check for WordPress, type /wp-admin at the end of the home page url
To check for Drupal, type /admin or /?q=admin at the end of the home page url.
Sometimes these CMS use extensions to hide this administration section. In these instances you may go to the home page and inspect the page source. In the meta data, you may be able to see reference to which CMS it is using. If you use Firefox, this task of identification is made easier with the wappalyzer add-on, which automatically detects popular CMS a site may be using.
Once you've identified that a website is running Joomla, it's a little bit trickier to determine whether they are using a popular template. This involves going through the page source code and looking for tell-tale markers which indicate who made them. Here is a list of what text to look for in the code from some of the most popular template clubs:
Joomlart – ja_
Yootheme – yt_
Gavick – gk_
Shape5 – s5_
Bang2Joom – b2j_
Joomla makes having a professional website simple, whatever the use you might have. Check out our own growing range of templates and imagine how your site, whether it be an ecommerce, blogging or gallery site, could look to the world with this wonderful CMS.