Material Design, Business Catalyst, eCommerce and Dreamweaver

Material Design, Business Catalyst, eCommerce and Dreamweaver

In this post I want to give you a few helpful tips and hints about frameworks and Adobe Creative Cloud subscription, which includes Business Catalyst to host 5 sites for free.

Creative Cloud and Business Catalyst

As you probably already know Adobe Creative Cloud subscription includes and Business Catalyst which you can use to host up to 5 sites for free. That is changing starting with May 1st, 2015 and Business Catalyst won't be included for new members. This change has no impact on existing subscribers. Here is the link to information published on the Adobe Creative Cloud blog.

Bootstrap is not the only framework

Bootstrap or twitter bootstrap is extremely popular mobile first framework for web designers with a good reason. There are tons of tutorials, snippets, samples and templates created using this framework and available for free or as a paid products. Everything is just fine with bootstrap, just to let you know that there are and other cool frameworks out there which I found very useful. For the matter of fact, I am going to use Daemonite material framework which is based on Google Material Design guidelines and comes to us for free. You can preview samples from here.
Photoshop Plus in Dreamweaver using Daemonite Material Design


There are and many other free frameworks based on the same guidelines and here are links to a few of them.

Material Design with Polymer

Putting it all together

If you are about to use the framework, then chances are that you are going to use Dramweaver which has Business Catalyst extension. Having ability to create temporary site is also a big advantage. You can check your site using Google Page Speed, for example, or to send links to friends or clients and to ask for feedback and suggestions. You can always upgrade your site (what I am going to do) and to use full advantage of all in one platform taught for freelancers, startups and web designers.

eCommerce solution
With Business Catalyst you have all you need in one place for $38/mo or less, depend on how you are going to pay: monthly, yearly or bi-yearly. When it comes to resources then you may find an advantage on the side of some other solutions like WordPress, but keep in mind that 95% of the internet is rubbish and quality solutions are always very limited. Another aspect is that I am receiving responses from Brent Weaver and BC support team while I am still waiting answer on my support request sent to WordPress team. That's my experience.

Business Catalyst compared with other solutions
Let's compare eCommerce pricing and cost for a moment: WordPress is offering an eCommerce solution which is $300/yr. What you will get are templates and link to Shopify which will ask you for another $30/mo. Another solution suggested by Wordpress is Ecwid which is basically free to play around or to upgrade starting with $15. So far we can calculate cost to at least $500.

I have checked and other solutions like Microsoft Azure, Joomla and a few others. Azure is certainly most powerful solution for coders. Although they have a Microsoft Virtual Academy, I couldn't find quality instructions beside the very basic how to display modal window using JavaScript or how to get started with Bootstrap (which I already know how to use) in Visual Studio without any real World example of complete project and how to actually use their "easy to use" back end solutions. From its side, Business Catalyst offers real World examples and projects on BC Gurus site. I get started with Business Catalyst after watching only couple of videos.

Joomla is not a serious competitor while Magento is powerful platform which I haven't explored enough because it does not come with simplicity that I am looking for.

To summarize, Business Catalyst is the best and easiest solution for freelancers and startups which cannot afford back end support. Do not believe me by default, go and check available solutions and get your conclusions.

Conclusion

Before you get excited and before you decide which solutions to choose, go and check things on your own. This is the internet gentleman's, small water with lot's of crocodiles. Choose wisely church in which you are going to make your cross. From my side, I am suggesting you Blogger for easy blogging with some actual visits and traffic while my suggestion for freelancers and startups is definitely Business Catalyst and Adobe Creative Cloud.

Product used in this tutorial:
Dreamweaver CC 2014

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