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Why Premium Creative Agencies and CTOs Choose to Develop on RebelMouse vs. WordPress and Drupal

The Intersection of Design and Development: Where Your Clients Thrive

We started RebelMouse seven years ago knowing that there was a fundamental design flaw in the world of traditional CMSs: Every instance, on every platform, had to be updated independently. It's similar to an era when users had to manage their own Microsoft Exchange Server for email. The costs of managing, maintaining, and iterating on a CMS to keep it awesome and world class is typically a $10 million-a-year endeavor. But even then, these cost-prohibitive CMSs are still behind the times.


RebelMouse has solved this problem in a way that combines a creative expression layer on top of an iterative, highly secure, and scalable platform that is developer friendly. We enable content marketing and media teams to be lean and efficient so they can focus all of their time and energy on driving success. It's why we're the best CMS platform you could choose to help move your company forward in 2019.

RebelMouse: Cloud-Based and Always Iterating

In 2019, publishers need a high-performance site that produces sustainable reach and consistent revenue for publishers. Users need a straightforward content experience that travels easily across channels and platforms, including site, search, and social.

Our platform is the sweet spot in between those two needs. Needs that drive agencies made up of experienced WordPress and Drupal developers to create the best and highest-performing sites possible. But with RebelMouse, you get a cloud-based, API-driven, extensible, scalable, and secure environment that gives development agencies, CTOs, and technical teams a huge advantage in what they can deliver to their clients and teams.

Trying to manipulate big-box CMS platforms into something completely new and aesthetically pleasing requires design overhauls, numerous plugins, and frequent troubleshooting. On top of all this, every WordPress instance is totally distributed. This means that every single upgrade has to be applied individually to each instance — leaving 80+ million versions of WordPress outdated at any given time if left unattended.

This antiquated administrative process requires heavy, ongoing site management to keep these behemoths stable and updated. It's why there are entire agencies dedicated toward only managing and monitoring them. It could cost as much as $10+ million a year to keep a WordPress, Drupal, or custom CMS modern. And even then, these sites would still fall drastically behind what RebelMouse offers.

But it doesn't have to be this way. At RebelMouse, we blur the roles of designers, developers, and strategists to create a publishing experience that is built to support content creators, optimized for distribution and speed, and monitored and protected around the clock — all at a reasonable cost.

​Stay Ahead of the Algorithms

Media powerhouses like Google and Facebook are constantly changing and updating their algorithms. While these shifts may not always be as explosive as the friends-and-family update of January 2018 that devastated some publishers, even the smallest of tweaks can impact content strategy. It can be tough to keep up with these updates on top of creating quality content capable of sustaining reach across social.

Thanks to the massive scale of our platform, RebelMouse has access to deep data that often sheds light on the evolving algorithms of Facebook and Google. The dupoly generates more than 400 million page views and billions of impressions, and our insights allow us to see how that data shifts as the algorithms change. We then take this data and use it to fuel helpful platform updates and strategic recommendations for our clients.

For example, Facebook and Google both implemented heavy penalties for full-screen light boxes and pop-ups. Many media sites and brands didn't understand this update when it first went live and assumed it meant that they could no longer succeed on Facebook, accepting massive declines in organic traffic. At RebelMouse, we were able to quickly help clients understand the update when the algorithm changed so they could update their promotions accordingly, primarily by moving full-screen takeovers to second and third clicks so they are out of the view of Facebook and Google's crawl. It was also at that time that we discovered Instant Articles with a video in the lead media position has a massive advantage over other articles, so we updated our platform quickly to make it easy for editors to take advantage of this feature.

RebelMouse updates its platform weekly to keep up with the algorithms. As other publishers miss opportunities and windows for growth, content fueled by RebelMouse has already adapted.

If you're working for an agency, or your site is currently powered by one, here's more about the kind of experience you'll get by making the switch to RebelMouse.

The Perks of Custom Tech at a Fraction of the Cost

As you'd expect, we have a team of developers and designers ready to create a website from scratch that can meet any client's needs. But for agencies, our role as custom site builders expands and contracts as much as needed. We work with the languages of the open web, and help agency developers and freelancers acclimate to our platform quickly, allowing them to let their creative talent shine with full support from us.

No Developer Operations (DevOps) or System Operations (SysOps) Required

  • We are massively scalable, redundant, and secure. We have multiple CDN contracts, and have every New Relic and monitoring scaling tool plugged in to ensure that your site experiences massive, scalable performance for far less than custom builds.
  • Our infrastructure is hosted on Amazon Web Services' (AWS) cloud. Our 24/7 support team can help you track any errors that occur to help provide as much visibility as possible into every potential issue.

Multivariate (A/B) Testing Tools With Dynamic, On-the-Fly Staging Environments

  • Each new product update and feature release is deployed to a small percentage of traffic, and then A/B tested for performance impact.
  • Our testing includes how each version affects page speed and user experience. We then take these results and see how they correlate with conversion to goals — such as new shares, subscriptions, and purchases.
  • It's extremely fast to make changes to staged layouts, and easy to compare their performance to your or your clients' key KPIs.
  • RebelMouse testing tools are not a JavaScript plugin that rewrites script from the server. Our solution is full-stack and extremely powerful.

RebelMouse Design Is Flexible and Performance Focused

If you're an agency or freelancer operating as your own agency, our content and design suites offer ample flexibility to create enterprise-level experiences for your clients.

  • You have full control over logos, fonts, and color palettes out of the box, and you can completely customize these aspects and more to your liking with advanced HTML/CSS tools and flexible control over JavaScript.

RebelMouse Is a Creative Platform

Often times, agency developers may not be up to speed on the latest winning content strategies. By switching to RebelMouse, you don't just get full product support. You also gain access to a creative agency that's able to guide your site's strategies around content optimization, and drive success across all platforms.

  • Use a premium editorial suite with intuitive, sleek content organization capabilities that require just a few clicks from content creators.
  • The only limits are your imagination. Our team can build any custom features, or creators can leverage the premium suite already available, including contests, e-commerce options, collaborative networks, dynamic ads, and pixel-perfect placements. Between our design tools and APIs, there is virtually no limit to what content creators can do without special requests.

Proprietary Editorial Tools to Propel Your Content Ahead

Wouldn't you like to give your editorial team their dream tools?

  • Real-Time Insights: Adjust content strategy as needed with native stats like page views and time on site, visible right from within our Entry Editor.
  • Organic SEO: Leverage proprietary technology to see how an article's topic is already performing on Google's page one. Then, take that data and use it to set up every article for success in the search rankings.
  • Social: Make the most out of distribution through a proprietary, built-in influencer database that lets you define and reach out to your content's organic audience.

Agencies — treat your clients to a new kind of sustainable growth this year, and join our growing league of successful media properties. Request a proposal today to see what it'll take to include our platform in your portfolio of game-changing solutions.

If you're not an agency or freelancer currently working on premium sites, but you are interested in a site replatform, contact us today and let's create something viral together.

Publishers No Longer Have to Submit Their Site to Google News

Google's Publisher Center creates new opportunities for audience growth

Just before the start of the next decade, Google announced an important change to its Google News offering with the launch of Google Publisher Center. The new interface merges Google News Producer and Google News Publisher into one to streamline the partnership process for publishers.

Overall, the change should make it easier for publishers to manage their Google News settings, including updating themes, directing URLs to section pages, and configuring user permissions. Read the full list of features here.

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How to Find Work-Life Balance as a Remote Employee

Tips from our CEO on making the most of an office-free lifestyle

Working from home is becoming increasingly popular, with an estimated 66% of companies now allowing remote work and 16% operating completely office-free. RebelMouse is one of those fully remote companies, and over the years we've mastered how to stay close to each other despite being spread across more than a dozen countries. We believe working remotely is good for both our personal lives and our productivity. Read more about this here.

Still, working free from the shackles of an office environment doesn't mean every day is a dance party in your pajamas from 9 to 5. Working from home comes with its own set of challenges just like any other job.

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Inside RebelMouse’s Quality Assurance Operations

How We've Perfected Stress-Free Publishing

At RebelMouse, we like to refer to our enterprise publishing platform as "lean tech." Most publishers have a natural inclination to start doubling down on teams of developers who try to build unique experiences to help stand out above the noise. But they should actually be doing the opposite: Lean tech is the preferred way to cut through content saturation. By allowing RebelMouse to obsess over your product, content producers, editors, managers, and everyone in between can focus on creating quality content and taking advantage of opportunities to leverage distributive publishing strategies that create real revenue growth.

One of the major reasons we're able to maintain a lean tech environment is thanks to our approach to quality assurance (QA). We make updates to our platform daily to ensure our clients always have access to the most robust, high-performing, and secure version of our platform. Behind the scenes, this means having a solid QA structure that's efficient, creates less bugs, and catches the ones that do pop up before they go live. It's a system of checks and balances that's hard and costly to replicate on a custom CMS. Here's a glimpse into how it works.

Our Tech Stack Toolbox

  • Cucumber
  • Java
  • Junit
  • Maven
  • Selenium WebDriver
  • TeamCity
  • Zalenium (Selenium Grid)

Our Checks and Balances Workflow

Automated Regression Testing Cycle

The Lifecycle of a Product Update

When an update is first made to RebelMouse, TeamCity immediately triggers the start of automated tests to review integrity.

TeamCity Build

TeamCity Agent

The tests run in parallel on TeamCity's Build Agent. Next, Zalenium creates docker containers with browsers that matches the count of parallel threads. An Allure report is then generated from the test results, which shows the state of the application after the update.

Allure Report Pass

If a test doesn't complete successfully, the testing framework receives a video with a failed test and attaches it to the Allure report.

Allure Report Issue

Based on the report analysis, a QA specialist will create a "bug" ticket in our product management software to address the issue if needed. Then, information about the bug is immediately sent to the project manager and we begin the process of correcting the problem.

The media powerhouses we power can publish with confidence knowing that any product issues that arise are met with a tried-and-true process to fix the problem with little-to-no disturbance to their workflow. If you have any questions about this process, please email support@rebelmouse.com.

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