Drupal is a popular Content Management System (CMS) used to develop websites in a wide variety of companies and industries. It is sometimes lumped in with WordPress and other programs. However, it’s much more powerful. Knowledgeable developers can create beautiful websites on Drupal. Here are just a few examples:
Harvard Science & Engineering Department
Since 2007, the Harvard Science and Engineering Department has been one of the prominent websites built on Drupal. Their tasteful, easy-to-read website features a large image that links to a current story. There are smaller images with story summaries underneath. Current articles are listed below the image box with a photo and snippet of each article. Sidebars list department resources.
Another one of many websites built on Drupal, the Popular Science website manages to be clean and bold at the same time. The header has a simple POPSCI logo followed by menu items for Gadgets, Cars, Science, Technology and DIY. A rapidly changing image slider runs through five bold photographs leading to the full story with a click. There is a short middle column that outlines top stories and new features.
Amnesty International is one of the great websites built on Drupal. It presents a very clean design. Yellow, their signature color, is carried through the header, footer and titles in the sidebar. Below the header with the organization title and simple logo, users find a photo slider cycling through three images leading to top stories. The main menu keeps things simple with navigational links to Home, Who We Are, How You Can Help, Learn About Human Rights, News, and Stay Informed.
Fast Company uses a black and white theme without becoming drab and boring. The secret is their judicious use of images in both the sidebar and main story breakdown section. The only use of color is a subtle blue in the “Follow Fast Company” social media box. This is a great example of well-designed websites built on Drupal.
Yahoo Research! is another one of many beautiful websites built on Drupal. The research and development division for all of Yahoo uses color well. Using a plum-colored theme, users are greeted with a simple menu leading to Search and Web Mining, Machine Learning, Economic and Social Systems, Computational Advertising, and Web Info Management.
Many record companies and music artists use websites built on Drupal. One of my all time favorite recording artists, Bob Dylan has a great band website layout in Drupal . In this case, BobDylan.com surrounds the main content with a quiet gray to give a little more dimension to the theme. A thin sidebar on the left leads to multiple sections of the site. There is no top menu other than a link to the Bob Dylan newsletter.
NASA is one of the best technology websites built on Drupal. NASA’s website is a dark theme surrounded by a shot of the vast expanse of deep space. The home page is compact. Still, it never feels crowded. The images are smaller than many of the other sites in our list. Nonetheless, they use gorgeous graphics in the sidebar to lead to main sections like NASA In Your Life and Commercial Space.
Like other websites built on Drupal, Universal Music Group’s website reflects the energy of the music they sell. Visitors are greeted with a constantly revolving slider flanked by a large ad block featuring a current promotion. A block of news features in soft blue is followed by a large video and slider menu. The soft blue accent is continued in the In Stores section below the videos, and in menu text in the footer.
Rock Band is one the best selling music software programs of all time. Rockband.com is as far from the stock websites built on Drupal as one can get. Dramatic colors and large menu fonts surround the bold RockBand.com logo. The logo hangs on top of a fast-changing slider showcasing the latest songs available in the program.
Warner Brothers Records
Rather than a large homepage that extends way down, Warner Brothers keeps everything in the first screen. This is one of the more condensed websites built on Drupal. On a solid black background, users are greeted with a small logo and capitalized items all in white. In the middle of the screen, three simple image blocks lead to Latest News, Visit the Store, and Connect With Us.
Websites built on Drupal are criticized as rather drab and boring. Critics fail to understand that Drupal is not necessarily designed for simple blogs and small websites of only a few pages. Its strength is that it gives developers the ability to create complex websites developments easily. The ten organizations shown here prove that websites built on Drupal can be as elegant and beautiful as they are powerful.