Review: Tridion R5 Web content management shines
R5 trumps other WCM software with outstanding usability, depth
The smell of success
Measuring the success of these campaigns -- and your overall Web presence -- is another task where Tridion R5 excels. In the case of e-mail, built-in statistics showed whether visitors read e-mails. I then drilled down to view the click-through rate for each link in the e-mail. Moreover, R5's general Web analytics match up well to stand-alone products such as WebTrends and Omniture. For example, R5 overlays helpful statistics on each Web page about the popularity of content. When I spotted sections with little interest, the system's A/B testing feature helped me modify the message and verify if changes increased interest in various articles.
Beyond targeting content to different Web servers, R5 provides additional slants on scalability. One, called BluePrinting, let me share (ghost) content, layouts, and visitor profiles from a parent Web site to many other sites, which is essential in managing global sites that require some localization.
Using the graphical BluePrinting interface, I quickly created various country sites and language repositories. But what I liked the best was the how R5 handles most of the logic automatically. For instances, I had Canada English and French sites; the French site automatically displayed English content (based on content pulled from the U.S. English pages) whenever a local translated version was not available. What's more, when the original English content changed, an e-mail notification was sent to employees who managed the international sites so they could update their translated pages.
R5 includes basic content versioning. Still, I believe you should take a hard look at the optional Archive Manager. This module let me retrieve an archived Web page or an entire site for a specific date, time, or visitor profile. It's easy to configure the system to keep records for a certain time -- and schedule or manually remove content. Beyond keeping a site copy for historic needs, this system would also be very valuable for regulatory compliance or in legal liability cases where you might need to prove use of trademarks, say.
I have a hard time finding fault with Tridion R5. It does just about everything I look for in a contemporary Web content manager. Content is easy to create and manage; you can then deliver it in multiple ways. Personalization is perhaps the hottest topic these days, and R5's audience targeting keeps up with the big names in this area. I was also impressed with the way BluePrinting handles global Web sites. If there's a slight weakness with Tridion, it's connecting with other systems. But even here, the business and portal connectors, plus R5's XML architecture, should make integration with back-office systems possible without requiring a complex integration project.