Drupal As A Headless CMS

Denis Peszka
Author: Denis PeszkaTech Lead

Drupal is well-known for its flexibility. Thus, anyone can configure it in multiple ways for different purposes. If you are tech-savvy, nothing stands in your way to boost Drupal possibilities. How can you do that? Among others, through headless CMS website development.

Headless CMS Drupal

What is headless CMS? How does it work?

Let’s treat Drupal as a system divided into two parts. The first one – back-end – contains content, database, and other components necessary for website management. It is not available for the visitors. The second one is the front-end – everyone can see it. Thus, visitors interact with it during every session.

In traditional attitude, Drupal provides an administrative back-end, which enables to make modifications. Then, they are displayed in the front-end in HTML form. In headless Drupal, you still use classic back-end for administration purposes. However, the front-end side can use different technologies to display content. As a result, you can use React, Vue, or other technology for the front-end because the whole communication on the back-end – front-end line is held through API.

Headless Drupal – Key Advantages

There are dozens of reasons why it is worth treating Drupal as one of the best headless CMS. Among others:

  • it is a future-proof solution – a headless attitude vastly facilitates a website's redesign process because it doesn't demand significant back-end modifications.
  • it provides better workflow – the front-end programmers have more room for maneuver. In many aspects, their actions don't depend on back-end programmers' work. As a result, everybody can focus on their tasks.
  • it guarantees increased page speed – with headless Drupal, you can use different frameworks, e.g., React, which can prominently boost a website's speed and efficiency.
  • it facilitates responsive web design– headless websites can be easily adjusted to mobile devices, which is crucial, e.g., from the SEO and UX perspective.

Free Headleass CMS Drupal – API First Initiative

If you want to bet on headless, Drupal is one of the best CMS for this project. Why? It is a well-known technology with default functionalities perfectly suited to the headless attitude. One of them is a well-designed API.

API is a vital element in the headless jigsaw. It is responsible for communication between Drupal back-end and the front-end technologies. Drupal set up an API-First initiative, which put an immense strain on API development for smooth and easy Drupal integrations with other technologies. Such an attitude is critical in choosing CMS for building the headless website.

Headless Drupal And… - Examples Of Front-End Technologies

Many technologies can be easily used in headless with Drupal back-end. Beneath, we will focus on JavaScript frameworks that make a perfect match with CMS Drupal.

Headless Drupal And Vue

Vue is a highly flexible JavaScript framework. It should be a first choice for designing a dynamic but straightforward user interface. According to many programmers, Vue is easy to learn from scratch. What distinguishes Vue from other JavaScript frameworks is its outstanding speed and efficiency. Finally, it is easy to integrate with other apps or programming languages, e.g., Laravel.

Headless Drupal And React

React is a project supported by the Facebook community. Thus, there are no doubts about its stability, future, and quality. React is the right choice for single-page applications or mobile apps development. Thanks to React, you will be able to integrate with Drupal back-end plenty of non-standard solutions. The framework's structure can be beneficial when you think about a website's search engine optimization.

Headless Drupal and Gatsby

Gatsby is a versatile framework. Among numerous advantages, we can distinguish its speed (thanks to static page files implementation). Besides this, Gatsby enables downloading data from different sources simultaneously, which is crucial in a headless attitude. Moreover, the framework provides high security – during the website resources loading process, there is no code execution from the user side. Such a solution minimizes the possibility of hacker attacks.

Headless CMS Drupal – Summary

If you are sure about implementing a headless website or application, without any doubts, Drupal is a worth considering solution for its back-end. Not only the extended API but also the variety of technologies that can be integrated into the front-end, cause that Drupal is meant for headless.

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