Experiences building custom Joomla extensions

This is a guest post from JS Webdesign about their experiences building custom extensions for Joomla using Joomlatools Framework.

JS Webdesign was approached in 2012 to build a custom application to capture, manage, and display the contact and profile information of the members and companies of the Wemeldinge business club.

Going custom

We considered using ready made Joomla components and looked into various CCK solutions but didn’t find any that suited our needs and/or where extensible enough to implement the features required by the client. After some deliberation we decided to go with Joomlatools Framework.

We wanted a tool which would alleviate the need for writing a large amount of repetitive code. At the same time we had to build a versatile solution that could easily be altered, and extended with new desired functions. That tool needed to support these requirements and Joomlatools Framework seemed to be a perfect fit.

We had never ever used the framework before and were excited to get our hands dirty.

Benefits

For the club’s site and yearly guide we had to store, track and publish members, companies, emails, addresses, phone numbers, business listings, etc.

On a yearly basis the club uses the data to create a guide where all the businesses in the village can be found. The guide also contains tourist information for the visitors of the village and is made available as an e-book on the website.

One of the key outcomes of the project is that the error rate of the various listings in the booklet dropped to almost zero. This was one of the issues we had with some of the ready made Joomla extensions we had used before.

What was also awesome is that we created the component for Joomla 1.5 (2.5/3.0 hadn’t been released yet). It took very little effort to bring the component into Joomla 3.0. It was a snap!

Be addictive

Once you start using Joomlatools Framework you don’t want to go back. We use it now for all our custom development and have build a lot of custom components for our clients.

One of our clients sells holiday and other real-estate in a village a few miles from where our company is situated. In the real estate space everything is about SEO and increasing page views. Each property listings need to be augmented using rich snippets to help search engines understand better what each page is about.

To help this company we built a real estate solution that allows them to easily manage their different property listings and publish them on their Joomla site, while including these rich snippets and other SEO improvements. The client saw a significant increase in page views.

You might say “nothing special there, this can be done with any tool” and you would be right. What stands out to us is that we built this application in roughly 2 days. Something that would take weeks using any other framework.

This is where Joomlatools Framework really shines. It’s fast to build in, and solutions are easy to extend and re-use.

Checkout some of our projects and extensions that we’ve also created with the Framework:

We have become fans for sure!

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