Summary: 20 essential Drupal modules. Good choices for improving Drupal SEO, admin interface, managing internal mailing lists, easy contact forms and much more.
This is a guest post by Tom Walker.
Web content management doesn’t get much better than it is with Drupal, the popular open source knowledge sharing and collaboration tool. Here are 20 essential Drupal modules that will help you take your Drupal implementation to the next level.
- Admin Menu: Wouldn’t it be nice to have all your administrative areas accessible from one convenient menu, rather than having to make three to six clicks to get where you want? Admin Menu saves you time, making everything you need just a click away.
- Google Analytics: It’s hard to know what’s going on with a Web site without Google’s free analytical tools. This module instantly equips your site for monitoring users, pages, downloads and more.
- Global Redirect: Manage content duplication, 301 redirects, and URL validation with this small, but powerful module.
- Rules: This flexible conditional module let’s you construct custom redirections, send emails, create custom flows and more, all from a user friendly interface.
- Webform: Easily implement feedback forms, surveys and more with Webform. This powerful module can even be used as the front of a support ticket system. Visitor input is saved into a database table and statistics and simple reporting are performed through the module’s interface.
- SEO Checklist: SEO checklist presents administrators with a checklist for best SEO practices, helping you to make sure that your site has maximum exposure.
- Embedded Media Field: Easily create fields for video, image, and audio files, making multimedia enabled sites a cinch.
- CAPTCHA: You know how important CAPTCHA can be in controlling traffic from spammers and bots, so it’s good to know there’s a Drupal module that can easily add CAPTCHA to your site. Additionally, there is a CAPTCHA pack that includes extra CAPTCHA types.
- Privatemsg: Add a touch of social media to your Drupal-powered site with Privatemsg, a module that allows users to message each other from within the system. The module includes the ability to search messages, block users, and send message notifications via email.
- Panels: Quickly create custom layouts using a drag and drop interface. Panels makes it easy to create landing pages, node pages, and other functions, while enabling integration with other systems.
- Custom Breadcrumbs: If a breadcrumb path back to home isn’t enough for your site, use Custom Breadcrumbs to set parameters for any kind of node. The latest version allows you to include PHP snips as part of the breadcrumb title and path.
- Simplenews: This module makes it easy to develop and maintain mailing lists while managing registered and unregistered users.
- Ubercart: Make Drupal your e-commerce platform by installing the Ubercart module. This is the most popular add on for online stores. With hundreds of addons for the module itself, site owners get a lot of power and flexibility.
- Voting API and Fivestar: Give site visitors a way to easily rate your content. This not only helps webmasters decide what content to emphasize, it also guides users to the best content on the site.
- Calendar: Offer your visitors full calendar functionality allowing users to view by month, day, and year formats. New functionality allows users to post videos in a date on the calendar, among other powerful features. Also requires Views and Date API.
- CCK: Design your own content fields using this powerful module.
- Protected Node: Build in secure node functionality using this module. When installed, every attempt to access a protected node will redirect users to a password authentication before the user is allowed to load the page or download content.
- Menu Block: Display more menu items in deeper hierarchy using this module. MenuBlock enables the construction of custom menu trees that go well beyond Drupal’s basic functionality.
- Search Config: Choose from several options for search implementation and define what nodes you want indexed using this powerful module.
- Printer, e-mail and PDF versions: Give users the ability to print content from your site with ease. Often screen formatting isn’t printer friendly, so visitors will appreciate the convenient flexibility of getting a print format view of your page. The ability to convert to email or PDF format helps users share your content with others.
Tom Walker is a blogger (who prefers WordPress) and designer based in the UK. He works as an editor for an online supplier of HP 343 inks and other print media supplies. Much of his time is spend administering their blog, CreativeCloud.
Antti's notes: Drupal, like WP, can be extended by the users. WordPress has plugins, Drupal has modules. If you are running site with Drupal, I'd love to hear your thoughts about this list of Drupal modules. What modules are the most important for your Drupal site?