The Web's Best Kept Secret

  • by Shala Graham
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For almost three years, we've designed and built websites on Adobe's Business Catalyst (BC) platform and we think of it as the ultimate web system that meets all website needs for about 95% of organizations. (Check out our latest Business Catalyst powered website for the Reel Water Film Festival!) Despite the very large partner community (us web developers) worldwide, it seems to be the best kept secret on the web! As I talk with organizations about their website needs, describing Business Catalyst to them, I have yet to find someone who says they have heard of it, but they all get excited about how it can make their website really work for their organization. So it’s time to share the good news of Business Catalyst! Let’s dive into three key reasons why we think organizations should be using Business Catalyst for their websites.

SECRET 1

Robust 5+ systems in 1, with powerful built-in tools

When you visit Adobe’s Business Catalyst website (www.businesscatalyst.com), the first thing you will see is “Say goodbye to 5+ systems.” And it is true! The platform has an integrated content management system (CMS), customer relationship management (CRM) system, built-in site analytics, email marketing and eCommerce. Some of the built-in tools include secure zones, a document/media manager, site-wide search, customizable forms, photo galleries, event bookings, blogs, news and FAQs. No installation necessary, they only need configuration to meet your needs, such as auto-responders and categorizing, and styling when you are ready to use them. And for those butterfingers out there who are prone to accidents, there is also an archive and rollback feature that allows you to restore the web pages to previous states over the past 90 days! Whether you are on a PC or Mac, using any of the leading web browsers, you can edit and maintain all the content on your site without being a tech nerd like us.

Our favorite built-in tool is the Web App tool. This feature packs a punch, streamlining the development of a variety of features. We use web apps to create feature sliders, job boards, calendars, sponsor profiles, staff listings, searchable directories, case studies and more. We don’t have to use third-party plugins or extensions, as is the case with popular open source CMS tools like Wordpress or Joomla, and we can custom develop these applications without expensive programming, allowing the client to have advanced features without the high-end costs.

SECRET 2

Maintenance, security and support by Adobe

System upgrades and maintenance are automatically implemented by Adobe, so there is no need for a maintenance budget to simply monitor and upgrade the system or plugins, ensuring constant security. We’ve worked with those popular open source content management systems since 2007 and found it to be a pain, and a security risk, to stay on top of the system and plugin upgrades. Before you could install the upgrade or security patch, you had to make sure that all the plugins that were installed were compatible and tested. Sometimes they are, and sometimes they aren’t.

Help, live chat, and unlimited system support tickets are all included in the hosting subscription provided by Adobe. When we submit any support ticket or question, we are guaranteed an 8 hour response window, though we usually hear back in 2-3 hours. Of course, live chat is instant!

SECRET 3

Great for Nonprofits, small and large

Don’t be deceived by the name…this platform is a catalyst for all types of business, even the business of fulfilling the mission of nonprofit organizations! Using the built-in features and web apps, you can drive newsletter sign-ups, send out and track HTML email newsletters to your supporters, capture and export the data of people who contact you online, manage volunteer sign-ups, drive event registration, take online donations, create member-only portals, track how often documents are downloaded from your website, embed amazing campaign videos, integrate social media commenting on your blog, develop a searchable affiliate directory with map, sell downloadable products, accept grant applications and much more! It is really amazing what you can accomplish in Business Catalyst.

We hope that you are getting excited about Business Catalyst and what it can do for your organization. If you are interested in learning how Business Catalyst can help you drive your mission forward, contact us for a free consultation.

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