I'm considering doing some web design and development for money but something that has been on my mind for awhile now is, when designing websites for clients do they need to have a back-end for the admin to log-in and add new content to the pages? As I'd imagine it would be difficult for a client with limited techincal knowledge to edit a HTML or PHP page in it's raw format and would be a bit expensive to pay someone everytime a client needs a new paragraph inserted into a page.

If the back-ends are required for designing and developing websites professionally is there software or scripts out there that auto-generates a back-end for editing content on pages for clients or does it need to be done manually?

I know CMS like Joomla and Drupal exist and have a back-end but I was wondering if there's anything in existence for websites that are made up of PHP pages created from scratch?

Sorry if this sounds stupid.


PHP pages created from scratch

If it is from scratch then I'd imagine you'd have to design the back-end management from scratch. In fact I'm doing this now as we speak.

I'm creating a simple login page with a mysql database so the client (or rather my friends) can add content and upload pictures. It shouldn't be too difficult.

I see so would it involve storing content within the pages into a database then when a client wants to edit the content it is taken from the database then posted back into it with the client's edit? Is there anything you could suggest either keywords for searching with or books on how a back-end administration section could be developed? I've tried Google with 'Creating a back-end to a website' and had no luck.


Have you considered just using a "standard" CMS? There are lots of them already written and in daily use...

Standard CMS as in?

What I'm also getting at is if anyone has any experience with developing websites for clients if they usually demand an easy to use back-end to the site for them to edit page contents

What I'm also getting at is if anyone has any experience with developing websites for clients if they usually demand an easy to use back-end to the site for them to edit page contents

Every client different. If you are just breaking in to this line of work, you are probably working with cost-conscious small scale clients. They will probably want a way to tweak the content without paying someone else to do it. Some developers offer a package deal where they pay for the web site and get N hours of maintenance for one fixed price.

Oh I see. It is much clearer to me now. Thank you griswolf.

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I developed a few 'simple' CMSes myself (php/mysql), but they are not for the easily fazed! So many bugs! Browser compatibility problems! If you're not an experienced coder, be prepared for a labour of love. I loved the challenge, but I nearly jacked in the project so many times.

At the heart of your CMS should be a WYSIWYG editor. When file-handling is important (upload images/flash/documents) in addition to general WYWISYG editing, I use Spaw2 from Solmetra. If file management is not an issue (can't imagine that it wouldn't be!), CKEditor and TinyMCE are good alternatives. File management is a commercial option on some of these editors.

As mentioned, your page content, articles, blog etc will be stored in a DB. You may want to look at php->XML parsers for creating feeds/podcasts.

SEO will be a major factor when setting up your CMS. This is one of the areas where out-of-the-box CMSes really shine. I couldn't get close to them with my paltry efforts.

Hi ardav. I have used Joomla in the past but going to get a little practise with Drupal since it is more SEO friendly as well a few others before I dive in and do it for money! Best not to rush things like this.