Does ExpressionEngine rely too heavily on paid addons to provide basic functionality that should come out-of-the-box with a commercial content management system worth $300? What is the base-level of functionality that you should expect from a commercial CMS?
I've recently had the pleasure of properly working with ExpressionEngine for the first time on a couple of client projects. The experience with EllisLab's flagship content management system so far has been mostly great; there is a lot of power under the hood and a solid methodology behind one of EE's greatest strengths: the ability to manage almost any kind of content you can think of.
EE has managed to do quite well for itself, despite costing $299 for a commercial license, and competing against hundreds of free, open-source products such as Wordpress, CMSMS, Joomla and Drupal.
It also has a strong aftermarket for addons, modules and plugins to add useful features that are not included in the out-of-the-box package. This can be great to enhance your website beyond the scope of what is normally provided by a CMS, such as e-commerce, calendar events, image galleries, etc.
But there has been one sour note that has been making me question whether I'll continue to recommend EE for new projects going forward: EE relies too heavily on paid addons to provide basic functionality that I feel should come out-of-the-box with any commercial CMS.
Here are just a few areas where I feel EE falls short of where it should be:
These costs all add up, and in my case, brought the overall cost of the CMS to much more than what I first quoted to the client. This is my fault more than anything for not doing the research and assuming too much about what EE would offer OOTB.
EE has a strong, passionate community who I'm sure will jump to its defence with the following:
These are all true, but I guess I'm really just questioning what base-level functionality should be expected in a commercial CMS of this price. What do you think?