Why are people building social apps in PHP without Drupal?
Check out this chart of job trends in the number of job postings that mention the words "social" and "php" or "social" and "Drupal". It comes from Indeed.com.
There are currently 816 social app building jobs mentioning PHP skills and only 89 mentioning Drupal skills. As you page through the actual job postings (see links below the chart), you see evidence of lots of social publishing application development going on out there, but a lot of it appears to be heading down a path of custom PHP development.
So what's up with this? Drupal is the killer social publishing system. It's built on PHP. It saves a ton of time over building a custom system from scratch. Why are so many people who are friendly to LAMP in general and to PHP in particular deciding to reinventing the wheel? Which of the following do you think it is?
- They've never heard of Drupal
- They're vaguely aware, but not sure why it might be relevant to their projects
- They've actively evaluated it in the past, but rejected it.
- They know Drupal and like it in general, but it's just a poor fit for the current project for some reason
Without real market research, it's anybody's guess. My personal guess is that # 1 and #2 are the primary reasons. We have a lot of work to get the word about Drupal as a social publishing system. If they think Drupal is just another CMS, why would they consider it for a social publishing project or any web site that includes social aspects? It's not obvious.
The space between the blue Drupal line and the orange PHP line represents untapped potential for the Drupals professionals everywhere.
Here's a version of the chart that includes additional technologies for comparison.
|social php, social drupal, social joomla, social rails, social jsp Job Trends||social php jobs - social drupal jobs - social joomla jobs - social rails jobs - social jsp jobs|
The good news is that PHP dominates the market for web dev jobs that mention the word "social" both absolutely and in terms of growth. But Rails and JSP are definitely strong and growing in this area. Joomla is... not so much.