CMS Smackdown: Sitecore VS. Ektron

September 30, 2014

Blog | Development | CMS Smackdown: Sitecore VS. Ektron
CMS Smackdown: Sitecore VS. Ektron

In today’s CMS Smackdown, we’re matching up two major .NET CMS – Sitecore (v7.2.0) and Ektron (v9.10) – and comparing their mechanisms for structuring content.


Round 1: Ease of Use

Both Sitecore and Ektron use a tree control which allows the user to see the hierarchy of his or her content. One of the major differences is that Ektron’s approach is more like a file explorer where you interact with folders on the left to see the contents or content items on the right (e.1).

 

e.1 – Ektron Folder View 

Ektron Folder - http://www.geekhive.com

Sitecore, however, uses the actual content items to build their trees (s.1).

 

s.1 Sitecore Tree Example

Sitecore Tree - http://www.geekhive.com 

 

The difference between these two implementations is huge! In Sitecore, a content manager is able to see all the content available on the site in a single view without ever having to drill down into the folder view. In a single click, CMs can select an item in Sitecore and edit it on the right. In Ektron, the user must drill down in the folder view: 1) click the appropriate folder, 2) click the content item in the right-hand panel, and 3) click the edit button on the details view which loads in the same panel as the content listing. Three clicks to edit in Ektron and one click for Sitecore. To edit a new item in Sitecore, click once on the new item, whereas in Ektron, you can follow the path I just mentioned, or you can click a back button to the content list and then click the item and click edit again

Round 1: Ease of Use goes to Sitecore  


Round 2: Url Configuration

The URL of a piece of content is pretty important to a website. By default, Sitecore uses the content hierarchy to build out friendly urls.

Sitecore:

For instance if my content path is:

Costumes > Game of Thrones > Jon Snow

My url will be:

http://www.mysite.com/costumes/game-of-thrones/jon-snow

Ektron:

By default, Ektron will build the url based on the template your content item uses and the content id.

For example:

http://www.mysite.com/templates/mytemplate.aspx?pid=123

Ektron, however, gives you the capability on any item to create a manual or custom alias for the item, or choose an automatic alias at the folder level which will then apply to any item created under the associated folder. For the automatic alias, you can select whether you want the aliases to be built from the folder structure (like Sitecore is doing) or if you want it to build the content alias off of the taxonomy of the item.

Examples:

Manual Alias:

http://www.mysite.com/jon-snows-awesome-costume-for-sale-now

Folder Alias:

http://www.mysite.com/costumes/game-of-thrones/jon-snow

Taxonomy Alias:

http://www.mysite.com/barbarian-costumes/sheep-skin/manly-men/jon-snow

Round 2: Url Configuration goes to Ektron



Round 3: Content Aesthetics

When I use a CMS, I want it to be visually appealing in a variety of ways. While both CMS’s do a great job without making the interface too overbearing or intimidating, Sitecore does a better job presenting the items in a clearer and more organized way. This is also where Sitecore flies past Ektron giving users the ability to add customized icons to content items (s.2). You can apply icons to content types, or folder types which helps content managers differentiate between items without the need to click them. The ability to configure the look and feel of content items is a huge win for a content manager.

 

s.2 – Content Icons

Sitecore Tree - http://www.geekhive.com

Round 3: Content Aesthetics goes to Sitecore


In the battle of Content Structuring in Sitecore vs. Ektron, Sitecore takes the victory. Sitecore’s content tree is simply easier to use and navigate then Ektron’s folder interface.

The CMS Smackdown isn’t over yet! Stay tuned for the next bout in our series where we’ll discuss Content Templating.

Questions? Requests? Tweet us @Geekhive.

 

 

 

Dave Cardine, UX and Creative Director, GeekHive

Dave Cardine

Marketing Technologist
Tags
  • Ektron
  • Sitecore

Recent Work

Check out what else we've been working on