Almost everyone who wants to publish a web site can benefit from using Joomla! to do it. Take a look at a few of the many good reasons to consider into using Joomla. Don't forget that it's FREE, so you can give it a try without risking anything but a little time.
Joomla! is a FREE web application that can likely handle all of your web site needs. Known as a content management system or CMS, Joomla specializes in managing web content with a simple What-You-See-Is-What-You-Get interface so even a non-technical person can post articles and images. Installation is as easy as uploading the Joomla files to a web server that can run PHP and has access to MySQL database (most web providers meet both requirements). After a straightforward 6-step installation process, your site is up and running!
Here are a few good reasons to look into using Joomla:
If you want to create a professional looking web site and you don't have any HTML programming experience or design skills... Joomla! is for you.
If you have a static web site or a blog and you want more control over how the content is displayed... Joomla! is for you.
If you're an intermediate web designer but you don't have the skills to take your web site to the next level... Joomla! is for you.
If you run a company that wants an advanced Web 2.0 site but you don't have a large budget to spend on a custom site... Joomla! is for you.
If you want advanced interactive features including forums, chat rooms, shopping cart/eCommerce functionality, interactive maps, and more available through the 1800 add-ons... Joomla! is for you.
Joomla has been embraced for every type of web site need from professional commercial online shopping eCommerce stores to blog pages to Internet magazines.
Joomla! is free, open source, and easy to use
To add content, simply click the Add Article button in the Administrator interface. You will be able to edit an article in much the same way as you do in a word processor (the editor even has a spell checker). When you click Save, the article will be instantly posted to the web for millions of visitors to read.
Content can be organized by filing individual articles into user-defined categories and sections. If you later want to change the location of an article, you need only select a different location from a drop-down menu and the next visitor to your site will see it in the new location. That's because Joomla! is completely dynamic -- changes made to any setting or preference are instantly reflected in the web site presentation.
Joomla Lets You Change the Look of Your Site Instantly
Joomla uses a template system that defines the fonts, color scheme, images, and general presentation of the site. To change the look-and-feel of your entire web site, download one of the hundreds of templates that are either free or very inexpensive. In moments, you can change your site from one style (see below left) to another (below right) with literally the click of a single button.
Take Advantage of Nearly 2000 Add-ons
Joomla has free or inexpensive extensions available to add almost any functionality you might want to your web site. If you want to include a commenting system, an eCard interface, or countless other features, go to the Joomla! Extension Directory (http://extensions.joomla.org) where you can download add-ons for these features. Even better, over 80% of the add-ons are free!
A Robust Programming Framework for Developers
Instead of developing a custom PHP site, Joomla makes it easy to build applications either atop the Joomla Framework (the Joomla CMS is actually an application running on the framework) or within the CMS. Joomla features three different types of extensions (modules, components, and plug-ins) to allow custom programming code for everything from a simple display add-on to a plug-in that modifies input and output at the foundation level of Joomla. In addition to the advantages provided by the extensive framework, developers inherit the tried-and-tested security features that underpin the Joomla system.
Download Joomla! Now
Want to get started? Go to the main Joomla web site (http://www.joomla.org) where you can look through the feature list, see a running demo, and download the application for installation on your web server.
Need further convincing? Take a look at Part II - How is Joomla! organized? for a complete explanation of the menuing system that forms the backbone of the structure of a Joomla web site.
If you're new to Joomla! and would like a thorough introduction to everything from content planning to template construction, please take a look at my new book Beginning Joomla! from APress. Click on the cover below for a complete description of the book. It is available now through Amazon.com and most book stores.