Joomla Overview - What Is Joomla?
Joomla! is a CMS (Content Management System). A Content Management System is really just a fancy word for a website structure or architecture that helps you manage the website's content better. If you intend on building a website with many pages or interactive features, then you will need to build it using a CMS of some type otherwise it may be too hard to manage in the future. You can also automate many tasks using a CMS and / or the additional extensions, making your job even easier.
Why Choose Joomla?
There are many different CMS's available today (....apparently in Europe alone there were more than 500 different CMS's available in 2009...). This makes choosing one difficult if you are a "Newbie" or do not have much experience building websites. Some are free, others are not free and can cost thousands of dollars per year in licensing costs.
Joomla! is an Open Source Software - created and maintained by a community of developers - and is completely FREE. This makes it ideal for website entrepreneurs who are planning to build an online empire of multiple websites, too.
Extend Your Joomla!!
There are literally thousands of Joomla! extensions available to extend Joomla's capabilities & functions (the core includes most of the essential features you will need to begin with) and most if not all of the additional extensions are available for free or at very little cost. These additional extensions offer endless capabilities to the Joomla site, including Shopping Carts, Subscription Management, Download Directories, Video Galleries, to name just a few. You can also restrict users access to only parts of the site, and allow only the site's administrators permission to change sensitive settings or delete content, so it has a lot of flexibility which makes it ideal for e-business sites.
How Easy Is Joomla To Use?
Joomla! is also one of the easier CMS's to use - so if you are a Newbie & have never built or maintained a website before, Joomla! is an excellent choice. Additionally, there are thousands & thousands of other Joomla! users world-wide, and many forums and other websites that can provide advice and troubleshooting etc if you should ever need it - an important factor for anyone who is not very technical or experienced. at building or running an online business website. These are just some of the reasons Joomla! is often the system of choice for small business or home users who want a professional looking site that's simple to deploy and use.
Joomla! has been developed for everybody. It's licensed under the GNU/GPL license, is easy to install and administer and is reliable. Joomla! doesn't even require the user or administrator of the system to know HTML to operate it (although some knowledge of HTML & CSS will come in handy if you ever want to customize the look of any templates, components or modules etc, however you can always hire a freelancer to do this work for you if you don't feel you are capable of learning). Joomla! is built using the php programming language however you do not need knowledge of php to build or manage a Joomla site.
Benefits Of Using Joomla for e-Commerce & Other Types Of Sites...
Joomla! CMS also has another important attribute for e-commerce & other websites - pages in a Joomla! site are stored in the website's database & are "created" dynamically whenever a visitor visits them or clicks on a menu link etc - Dynamic pages are regarded as being great for SEO (Search Engine Optimization) & dynamically loading websites tend to receive better ranking (and therefore the ability to attract more traffic). There are also many SEO extensions you can install which will help with SEO, plus there are other things you can do to improve SEO (....such as turning on the option for SEO URLs located within Joomla general configurations, & other "Tweaks")