Why choose our bespoke CMS Doddle?

By Naomi Worden 12th September 2023
Graphic of a person working on a content management system
We describe Doddle as a Content Management System (CMS) however it’s much more than that!

What is Doddle

Our clients use Doddle not only to manage content on their websites but also to integrate with other internal systems, as a Shop as well as a CRM among many more uses. It can manage the production of promotional posters and even manage entire day-to-day operations. 

Doddle is referred to as a proprietary system which is sometimes seen as a negative but we strongly believe the positives far outweigh any perceived negatives.

What is a proprietary system?

Doddle is software built and managed by SimpleClick - we retain the intellectual copyright and use of it is through a license agreement. This means the code is not available publicly, so it cannot be copied, modified, or distributed by others outside of our organisation.

This is in contrast to open source software where the source code is publicly available to be modified.

Doddle was built in this way to allow SimpleClick to have full control over the software and from a need to provide custom, bespoke functionality for clients where an off-the-shelf solution was not suitable and other open source platforms were too much of an uncontrolled risk.

So, why choose Doddle and not WordPress or other open source platforms?

When we pitch for work, we are often up against off-the-shelf and open source products such as WordPress, Umbraco, Shopify, and Magento. There can be some hesitation about using proprietary software, however for those clients we have converted, they can really see the benefits.

  • Flexible. Bespoke requirements can be achieved - there are no workarounds or compromises, we can deliver solutions that exactly meet our client’s needs.
  • Full control. All code is managed and supported by SimpleClick and therefore released in a managed process. Other systems that are built from plugins and themes are reliant on many different teams of developers to keep that code up-to-date, free from vulnerabilities, and compatible with infrastructure updates. There is no obligation for the developers to keep these up-to-date or support them long-term. With other systems, such as WordPress itself, WooCommerce and other plugins need frequent updating which can become very time consuming and costly to undertake. There is no control over when these updates are required, making it difficult to plan and budget.
  • Secure, less vulnerable to attacks. Other open source systems such as WordPress are open to exploitation due to the popularity of the platform. Plugins in particular are susceptible to software bugs, hacking and viruses and it does happen a lot. Doddle is more unique and centrally managed therefore there is a much reduced risk of security issues.
  • Not reliant on lots of plugins for additional features. Our sites are built containing all the functionality you need and fully tested to ensure compatibility. This avoids slowing down the site with lots of, often unnecessary, code contained within plugins where only a small portion of functionality is actually used by the site.
  • Improved performance. This covers both Doddle itself and the front end. Code is written and optimised as a whole instead of oversaturating the codebase (and database) with many plugins that can slow everything down as with WordPress and similar platforms.
  • SEO Optimised. Doddle has inbuilt SEO optimisation capabilities that allow control over elements such as page titles, meta descriptions, robots settings, open graph information (used by social platforms), URLs and canonical URLs, redirects, site structure, image meta and more.
  • Optimised sitemaps. This means you are not reliant on the often poorly constructed sitemaps produced by WordPress, due to its category system and tagging that can create duplicate content.
  • 3rd Party Integration. Doddle can be integrated with other third party systems in a way that best meets client needs rather than an often inflexible ‘out of the box’ solution.
  • Design. Fully customised designs can be produced, tailored to our clients and not dependent on choosing from existing pre-built themes. Whilst selecting from pre-existing themes can appear to save money initially, there are often customisations that are required which incur additional code and can also mean your website ends up looking like another website rather than being unique to your business.
  • Content widgets. Doddle contains a large library of widgets that can be used to construct website pages via a drag and drop interface, meaning fully flexible page layouts can be created quickly and easily where required.
  • Dynamic pages. Templated pages are available alongside individually created pages which can pull content from libraries and display in a standard format. These are used for product pages, jobs, events etc. where a consistent page design is required. 
  • Regular feature releases. Doddle is being continually developed to add functionality and new features. These are released to clients via managed release cycles.
  • Intuitive. Easy to use with a user-friendly interface and navigation alongside drag and drop page content creation, Doddle can be successfully used by non-technical people with minimal training. One of the main complaints with platforms like WordPress is the complexity and the big learning curve involved in using it and training others to use it. Every installation is different depending on the theme and plugins, making it far more complicated to use and understand. Doddle was named because it has been designed to be a ‘doddle’ to use. 
  • Drive development. Our clients have an active role in helping shape the future direction of Doddle and how it is developed in terms of new functionality.
  • Scalable. There are no limits on users, pages, or transactions. Doddle has been built to support high-traffic websites. Doddle also offers multisite support, where additional sites to be managed from the one system, allowing assets to be shared across sites.
  • Powerful. It’s more than just a content management system. There are endless possibilities in how Doddle can be used to power various business systems and manage business processes.
  • Fast support response times. Unlike waiting for a developer of a plugin to fix issues and bugs to an unknown and often long timescale, regardless of how critical to your site/business it is, SimpleClick have complete control over the code and will always assess issues and fix issues in a timely manner, giving you peace of mind your website is fully supported.
  • Controlled ongoing costs. A license fee is payable and this is known at the outset of the project. This covers usage, managed updates and core feature releases.

Why choose SimpleClick?

As an agency, a big plus point of SimpleClick is that we work in partnership with our clients; we want our clients to do well and will offer support in helping to achieve this. We have worked with many of our clients for a number of years; a testament to our customer service and our product.

We are responsive and on-hand to provide support for our clients long-term. Our team has a wealth of knowledge and experience to ensure you are fully supported as a business.

In conclusion

Whilst bespoke, proprietary software can appear more expensive at the outset, in the long run, it can save money plus provide a more robust, secure, and easy-to-use system that exactly meets business needs.

When embarking on a new project, it’s worth remembering that there are alternatives to open source solutions such as WordPress, Umbraco, Drupal, Joomla, and often those that warn against selecting proprietary software such as Doddle are those that offer a solution based on one of these open source platforms - remember that their views are not unbiased! There are also a lot more suppliers of these systems so they will have an overall larger voice; however, it pays to have an open mind and investigate all available solutions.

We recommend doing your research and speaking to a variety of suppliers to find the solution that best suits your needs both now and in the future.

Talk to us today

If you have a project that you think Doddle could be used for call us on 01473 655669 or email [email protected].