Technical considerations when using Site Studio for multisite projects

When contemplating the migration or build of websites using platforms like Acquia Site Factory (ACSF) and Acquia Site Studio, the technical architecture forms a critical foundation. This article seeks to offer insights into some core areas that should be considered during the planning and execution stages.

Migration of Content

Understanding where your content is coming from can set the tone for the entire migration process. Some key points to consider are:

  • Source of Content: Is it a lift and shift from an existing platform or a full-blown redesign? Is this from and earlier version of Drupal (If so Acquia have tooling to help) or from another CMS
  • Mode of Migration: Would you rely largely on automation or opt for manual content input?
  • Content Typologies: What delineates a component from a field? How do you distinguish structured content from unstructured? Do you need both in your site and can they be segmented by content type?

Technical Development & Governance

When initiating a multisite or multi-brand build, you should be prepared to answer questions regarding project governance. This ensures that there's no divergence from the established route. Points to ponder include:

  • Identifying key stakeholders and understanding their influence.
  • Documenting the objectives and scope of the platform to create a mutual understanding among all participants.
  • Ensuring a seamless enhancement process to accommodate future additions.

Development Considerations

The development phase is undeniably paramount. Here, we break it down into a few key sectors:

  • Development Responsibilities: Depending on the project's scale, you might engage multiple agencies or teams. It's crucial to establish clarity on roles and responsibilities, especially if there's a split between agencies handling different components.
  • Development Roles: From Technical Architects to Front-End Developers, each role needs a clear delineation of responsibilities.
  • Repository Architecture: Your decision here affects where components and features are developed and maintained.
  • Workflow: Mapping out the developer and component builder workflows is pivotal. Factors like security policies, dependency management, and communication strategies must be considered.
  • Specification of Features: This revolves around establishing and maintaining a consistent record of design and feature specifications.
  • Integration: Mapping dependencies and strategizing the deployment of Site Studio components can streamline the development process.
  • Testing: Establishing rigorous testing protocols ensures the quality and stability of the final product. Factors to consider range from regression testing to visual regression testing.

Roles, Permissions, and Configuration Management

Establishing user permissions and roles can be an intricate task, especially when multiple agencies are involved. Decisions here affect what functionalities and components users can access.

Configuration, on the other hand, defines how your site functions. With Site Studio, configurations that outline components, styles, and templates are bundled into packages. When shaping your configuration strategy, the key is to ascertain how these packages are deployed across different sites in your factory.

Developer/Designer Workflow

Maintaining a harmonized workflow between developers and designers can significantly influence the efficiency of the development process. Establishing individual environments for component development and setting clear processes for validation can smoothen the workflow.

In conclusion, when embarking on the journey of building or migrating sites using platforms like ACSF and Site Studio, a meticulously planned technical architecture can be the difference between success and setbacks. Addressing the above early in a project will set a robust foundation for a successful project.

To find out more and to read our detailed guide to developing Sites at Scale visit our tutorials at