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Wagtail

3.9
(9)

Wagtail is an open source CMS written in Python and built on the Django framework. Built by developers for developers, It offers a fast attractive interface for editors where content can be created and structured intuitively.

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Wagtail review by Dan D.
Dan D.
Validated Reviewer
Verified Current User
Review Source

"The Unreasonable Effectiveness of Wagtail"

What do you like best?

In my 10+ years of experience as a web developer Wagtail is hands down the best CMS I've ever used or worked on. We've been using Wagtail in production for about a year in an organization with an annual budget of 4M. I thought winning over the content editors would be a challenge, instead they turned into huge advocates after the initial training.

But to leverage its full potential you really need to agree with the philosophy behind the technology. I've read other Wagtail reviews with the complaint that editors "cannot update the HTML code". This is by design. The philosophy (named The Zen of Wagtail) is in my opinion the best part of the CMS. You can read the official details here (http://docs.wagtail.io/en/latest/getting_started/the_zen_of_wagtail.html).

But to summarize:

The CMS should get content out of an admin/editors head and into a database as effortlessly as possible, the designer should call the shots on how things look (with html/css), and the programmer should be using a programming language (not a user interface).

That philosophy sounds basic: make things efficient for all roles involved. But it has lead to design decisions for how the CMS works that are just brilliant.

From an editor standpoint it is a dream come true. Every entry screen is custom coded to accept the data they need to enter. Custom data entry screens means the editor can make fast work of the task. And the editors I work with all agree that they really like this kind of system.

From a technology standpoint, this puts the programmer in control of a modern MVC platform that is designed to get stuff done quickly. And they get to use all the tools they're familiar with (git, python, database migrations, unit tests, etc).

The way the custom entry screens for the editors are built produce two outcomes: 1. they are ridiculously easy to build and 2. they keep all the design files (html/css) in a place that lets the designers modify them with ease. (We have web designers that do layout work.)

By recognizing the three roles and requiring them to work efficiently you get a race car of a CMS.

What do you dislike?

Wagtail is a relative new comer, and even a year ago I was afraid it was more of a toy than a mature software product. I'm convinced that it is not a toy. And the problems that it solves are solved extremely well. However, being new means there isn't the plethora of pre-built components that are available from the PHP counterparts. The Awesome Wagtail list is okay (https://github.com/springload/awesome-wagtail) but I really wish there was an equivalent to wordpress.org/plugins.

Recommendations to others considering the product

Wagtail is different from other popular CMSs, you need to reframe your thinking into the three roles: editor, designer, and programmer. Each role has tools to do their job very efficiently. One person can do/be all three roles and switch between them as needed. However, you need all three roles, including a programmer. If you don't have a programmer you need to find one. Or if you want to just click buttons in your browser to build a website then Wagtail is not for you.

What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?

Our business revolves around content creation and delivery. We've been able to increase the amount of content we can publish without needing to increase the team size. We also completed three very creative projects that we were previously understaffed to complete before the switch. We saw a big upswing in traffic through those projects and management informs me they were very successful.

Because we switched to python we are also integrating machine learning (TensorFlow) into our search systems that we would have only been able to dream about in our old system. This should further reduce labor, increase our capability, and integrate seamlessly into our wagtail search system.

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Wagtail review by Simon F.
Simon F.
Validated Reviewer
Review Source

"Flexible and easy-to-use CMS"

What do you like best?

The streamfields feature radically simplifies the job of designing templates. You don't have to do so much work in advance, you can just create flexible page types and add the content you need. The interface itself is quick and enjoyable to use.

What do you dislike?

As with any CMS there are a few features we wish were already included such as it being less possible for one user to overwrite another users's changes, etc (in my mind two editors shouldn't be able to open a page at once).

Recommendations to others considering the product

Like any open source software the support is, of course, dependent on community, or the skill / focus of the agency you use to build and maintain your site. Get a good agency!

What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?

With Wagtail we were able to develop and launch a site within 40 days, which I think says it all.

What Web Content Management solution do you use?

Thanks for letting us know!
Wagtail review by Ashley S.
Ashley S.
Validated Reviewer
Verified Current User
Review Source

"Customizable for developers but mediocre usability "

What do you like best?

I like that as a developer, I can create a custom content management experience for each of our clients. It is fairly easy to create new fields in the code.

What do you dislike?

While the backend is fairly easy to configure, the user interface is challenging for a non technical user to edit. Some of the functionality is hidden, like changing the page order and choosing a new page could potentially be confusing to a user since there can be many options to choose from. Also the rich text editor inside of wagtail is mediocre. Users cannot update the HTML code and it will add unnecessary paragraph tags, which leads to some headaches for our team.

What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?

The business problem we are solving is how to allow users to edit their website without interfering with our development schedule. Since the development team can add a variety of fields to the CMS, it is easy for internal users to change out photos or links without having to get into the code base.

Wagtail review by Harry R.
Harry R.
Validated Reviewer
Verified Current User
Review Source

"My favourite django cms"

What do you like best?

It is a great piece of work goldarn it! Use it please. From the initial set up process it is fast, in fact there really isn't much you can't do if you set your mind to it. I primarily use it to create a help section for a website and it has been breeze, adding and image is simple, formatting them just as simple. And it looks and feels great when your using it.

What do you dislike?

The only downside that I can see so far is there is a steep learning curve if you want to do any real development, I haven't really done much development using Wagtail, but I have watched others and I think once you become comfortable with things like the terminal and template languages it would be fine, but until then quite hard.

Recommendations to others considering the product

If you haven't worked with the terminal and template languages, and template hierarchy then get a developer to set all this up for you.

What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?

I am creating a help section for a website, so my main role is content management, adding videos and step by step guides. I have found this process to very straightforward and manageable as a WordPress developer.

Wagtail review by User in Hospitality
User in Hospitality
Validated Reviewer
Review Source

"Fun to use"

What do you like best?

User friendly CMS, all the features you want, good layout and formatting. It is a fun platform to use if you're into coding and open source programming.

What do you dislike?

Could be confusing at first, but once you get the hang of it, it's easy! Can appear not using friendly, which can be a good thing because it is trying to attract a certain client/customer/user.

Recommendations to others considering the product

Do it only if you know open source, otherwise it will be too difficult and you should use another platform like Squarespace or Wix. If you like coding and open source platforms, use it! You will not be disappointed.

What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?

It helped create and manage our website which in turn helps business. The layout looks great and we have gotten a lot of compliments on our website. It has helped our customers find information faster, quicker, more efficient, and with ease.

Wagtail review by Richard H.
Richard H.
Validated Reviewer
Review Source

"New open source CMS worth considering"

What do you like best?

Wagtail has been developed with the web manager in mind. It helps simplify the management of complex websites.

Thought has gone into everything from how Wagtail features are labelled to predictive text for image searches. All these little things help to save time. From an interface point of view, I'd liken the design to being something Apple may produce.

I find some of the well established CMS solutions cumbersome, slow and confusing. Bolt-ons and extra modules make the experience far from seamless and bug ridden. The website we had before was built on Concrete 5 and we had many problems. With Wagtail there may have been one ... or even two in a year. But nothing more. This gives confidence in the robustness of the code base.

I also like the fact that new and exciting websites are being built on it., like: http://www.destinationspace.uk/ .

What do you dislike?

With it being a new open source CMS, people can be wary about using it. But there's a strong support community building up. And if you look on GitHub, there's plenty of action around the platform (be warned, only go there if you are a developer!)

For the less technically minded, you can see some of the sites that have been built on it here: http://madewithwagtail.org/

It's built on Django, so there should be plenty of people around who can quickly learn how it works, if needed. A number of digital agencies have embraced the CMS already.

What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?

I launched a website using this CMS one year ago and it has performed above expectations and we've seen site visits more the double to over one million. So it's more than proved itself to be Google friendly and technically robust.

I'm also told that due to the way Wagtail is created it takes around 20% less time to build with than Drupal. So there could be some big revenue savings.

Wagtail review by Ben R.
Ben R.
Validated Reviewer
Verified Current User
Review Source

"Lovely CMS built for Django developers"

What do you like best?

How easy it is for developers to set up your page structures and how flexible it is (by extending Django).

What do you dislike?

I love most parts of Wagtail, there is only a few minor dislike and that was justified by the developers (not opening links in a new tab).

Recommendations to others considering the product

It's a great CMS, would totally recommend (for Django developers)

What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?

Having an easy-to-use and flexible content managed website.

Wagtail review by User in Sporting Goods
User in Sporting Goods
Validated Reviewer
Verified Current User
Review Source

"Wagtail review"

What do you like best?

easy to review drafts of blog posts and simplifies the overall build out of a post.

What do you dislike?

seems like my team has limitations at times in how they can customize a post's layout.

Recommendations to others considering the product

Ensure that it will meet all of your brand's needs.

What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?

general blogging. while the platform has limitations, it does get the job done.

Wagtail review by Administrator in Construction
Administrator in Construction
Validated Reviewer
Review Source

"WagTail Review"

What do you like best?

It’s free!! You really can’t best that. You can get used to the product pretty quickly.

What do you dislike?

Can be a little slow, but I’m sure there is ways around that.

What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?

Website creation. It has tripled our profits & allows us to change our interface as needed to fit the business demands.

Kate from G2 Crowd

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