Backdrop CMS is the Drupal alternative thousands of webmasters have been looking for.

Newer versions of the Drupal project have moved in a completely different direction. Drupal is a great platform for "ambitious digital experiences" but it's not the best fit for other types of websites, anymore. Drupalistas all over the world are looking for alternatives to Drupal. Competitors like WordPress do not have the flexible architecture that Drupal offers, or anything comparable to the most amazing tool in the Drupal universe: a powerful visual database query builder, called "Views". If you are looking for a Drupal alternative for your website, Backdrop CMS might be for you.

The powerful data model of Drupal. The ease of WordPress.

You might have been using Drupal for years. So have we, and we still love the platform. But the current version of Drupal is not designed for standard websites anymore, it’s for digital experiences. And you better have a development team at your side. Here’s where Backdrop CMS comes in – as a true alternative to Drupal when someone asks for a website.

What’s wrong with Drupal?

Absolutely nothing. We still love and use Drupal. Nothing beats Drupal when it comes to creating massive platforms used by thousands of people per minute. But when our customers ask for comprehensive websites on a reasonable budget, Drupal is not our tool of choice anymore.

Backdrop is Drupal 7… reloaded

Backdrop at its core is still Drupal 7. But it has hundreds of improvements and includes completely new functionality like a powerful layout system, and state-of-the-art configuration management. And Backdrop CMS is fast. Really fast!

Mature and stable

Backdrop CMS is not a brand new product, like the newer versions of Drupal. Instead, it’s an evolution of the Drupal 7 software, with a lot of improvements for both website architects and content editors. Some would even say that it is the most stable project to come from the Drupal architecture.

Upgrade path included

Backdrop CMS has a built-in upgrade path from Drupal 7. It will run on the same database as your current Drupal 7 project, so any customizations you've made to your Drupal 7 site will not be lost when you upgrade to Backdrop. More than 70 Drupal 7 contributed modules are included in Backdrop core: Views, CKEditor, Pathauto, Redirect, and Token. Just to name a few.

This CMS is for people who build websites

The Backdrop team is continually working to make the out-of-the-box experience efficient, and easy to understand. Backdrop is a perfect fit for the former Drupal “site builder” and non-coder (in Backdrop, we call them “website architects”) – a species which seems to have disappeared from the modern Drupal landscape entirely. At the same time, Backdrop is also still a very powerful tool for the folks who like to dive deeper into the code.

Drupal «Features» reinvented

Configuration management is one of the hottest new tools in both Backdrop and Drupal. It takes the former Features module to the next level: any Backdrop configuration can be exported from one website and used on other projects. Never create a blog or an image gallery from scratch again –  reuse existing or custom "recipies" and refine what you have already created.

A powerful layout system

Backdrop CMS took the best of Panels and Context modules in order to build a flexible layout system with drag and drop functionality. Everything you see on the page, including the header and navigation, is placed into a responsive layout.

Backdrop CMS runs fast, even on shared hosting

Yes, really. And Backdrop will always aim to keep the server requirements low to keep the cost of hosting a Backdrop site reasonable. (Don’t try shared hosting with modern Drupal!) And if you're curious: yes, running Backdrop CMS with composer is possible for those who want it, but it will never be a requirement.

Backdrop is here to stay

Backdrop CMS has been out for more than 8 years now, and has a proven track-record of on-time releases. We are a small, but very active and dedicated community. And we have big plans for Backdrop’s future.

There are a number of Drupal alternatives. But Backdrop CMS beats most of them.

Thousands of Drupal 7 websites are currently looking for alternatives. The looming End of Life date for Drupal 7 has been extended to at least November 2023, but it will come eventually. There are some great alternatives out there, but which one is right for you will depend on your project requirements. 

You might take WordPress or Joomla into consideration. Maybe you tend to prefer SaaS-based solutions like SquareSpace or WIX. Or maybe you want to explore into the headless CMS world (in this case, modern Drupal might still be a pretty hot candidate ;-).

All of these may sound like good options…. but keep in mind: a lot of those Drupal alternatives do not have features like:

  • incredibly flexible data model with an unlimited number of content types and fields
  • powerful categorization system (don’t try to manage 10 taxonomies with other tools)
  • world-class visual database query builder… yes, we mean “Views”, now in core
  • versatile system of Display Modes, so content can be displayed in different formats on different pages
  • easy re-use of configuration (formerly handled by the “Features” module)

You should use Backdrop CMS if:

  • you love the unmatched flexibility of Drupal’s architecture
  • you create websites – in addition to planning the «next big thing»
  • you need to create those websites quickly
  • you have a limited budget for a complex web project
  • you want to reuse configuration across different web projects
  • you support translating content into multiple languages
  • you are a small agency, a solopreneur, or a non-profit organization

We would love to welcome you to the Backdrop community!

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