More than DNN for Dummies, DNN for Professionals as well.
Updated July 07, 2015

More than DNN for Dummies, DNN for Professionals as well.

Dennis Ashe | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review

Software Version


Modules Used

  • Action Forms, My Tokens, My Redirect, Our own that we developed.

Overall Satisfaction with Evoq Content

We use it for our own website, but we also host and use it to develop websites for our Clients. Our business model is a SaaS to the MLM / Network Marketing industry.

We write a lot of our own modules in C# and also buy a few from other developers.

Clients like to control the content and look and feel of their website, with DNN they have the ability to do so but then leave all of the heavy lifting to us to manage the Hardware, Programs, SQL Server and provide the necessary Reporting to them.

  • If a Client needs to add a page for a special Event, they can do so without having to contact us.
  • If a Client needs to add or change content, text or images at any time day or night they have the ability to do so without having to contact us.
  • Our Clients do not have to know anything about HTML, ASP.Net, C#, SQL Server etc. If they know how to use a Word Processor then they can do most anything they need from a Content standpoint by just using their favorite Browser.
  • If they need a special Module to do accomplish a certain task and we don't have one then we can provide one of hundreds developed by another developer from the DNN Store. Most modules are less than $100.
  • Because DNN uses Skins that are a layer on top of the platform architecture they can have different skins for different pages or departments etc. On the DNN Store there are literally thousands of Responsive Skins available that range in price from $40 - $200.
  • The platform is scalable and of course SQL Server is as well. So no matter how large a company gets DNN can handle the task ahead.
  • I really only have 2 complaints and they are minor with DNN. First I think that DNN might need to do a better job of certifying Developers that sell modules. Create a standard if you will, much like Apple does with Apps, as not all developers are created equally and support on some modules is lacking with some developers.
  • The second thing is I would like to see DNN keeping Developers more informed about upcoming changes to the platform and better co-ordination with developers on time schedules of new releases. Many times it seems the Developers have to play catch up when a new version is released and all of a sudden you may have some Modules that don't play nice with the changes.
  • Neither of these are really a major problem as DNN and the community has evolved tremendously over the years and it is fairly easy to find solutions from the community.
  • The positive impact is that DNN is fast to deploy and extremely flexibly so we can provide any thing our Clients need in a very short period of time especially with all of the great tools and resources that are available to you. It is definitely a RAD Tool.
  • It helps us keep our cost down and our profits up in a tight economy and in a very competitive environment.
  • With DNN I have not found a negative to our ROI nor to our business goals. It only enhances our Goals and keeps us profitable.
I have also used the Ektron CMS software platform before switching to DNN. It is a good product but it is much more costly than DNN and the product has a steeper learning curve and no where near the resources available like the community support and most importantly the thousands of available Skins and Modules, almost everything had to be custom written with the Ektron CMS platform. But in fairness to Ektron they do have a lot of features already available in their product.

If you just need to implement a website that is dynamic but not real big in Data Processing almost anyone can do so with very limited knowledge as long as you know how to use a Word Processor and your Browser.

If you don't have experience with setting up a Server to run a website there are Companies like PowerDNN, Rackspace and WinHost that can help and I recommend them in that order if you are using DNN.

If you need a more sophisticated e-commerce website and don't have much experience with Servers, SQL Server etc. then you should find a consultant to help you install and setup not just the DNN Platform but also select the proper Modules to accomplish what you want to do.

If you need a highly customized website that is very data intensive and you are not experienced then be sure to save yourself the time and money by finding a qualified Consultant to help you. The beauty of DNN is that it can handle as simple or as complicated of an Application as you need depending on what your needs are and how far you want to take it.

Using Evoq Content

7 - Everything from myself as President/CEO, Programmers, Project Management, SEO, and Tech Support. We all use it everyday to run our company as well as to create solutions and provide customized products and services to our Clients which are located all over the world and speak different languages and use different currencies.
3 - We have Customer Support individuals with no knowledge of programming at all that can easily handle the day in and day out support that is necessary for our Clients. If they cannot answer a questions then we have the more technical individuals with Project Management and Programming skills to fill in any voids in their abilities. But overall you do not need to be a Gear Head or that Technical to support DNN.
  • Content Management of text and Images for individuals and Clients with little to no technical skills in the MLM / Network Marketing industry.
  • Sign Up and Management of hundreds of thousands of Members / Distributor and Customers in a Genealogical Structure.
  • The ability for us to build a SaaS Business Model and offer our Clients a cost effective way to have professional IT services no matter how small or large they are.
  • We have used it to build a complete Affiliate Network Retail Mall that pays Cash Back to the Customer from thousands of Retails across the planet.
  • We have used it to build a complete Green Mall that offers Customers thousands of well known 'Green & Organic' Products for personal, home and business use.
  • We have used it to build a Nutritional Analysis and Diet Management system that lets you create Menus and Plan your Daily Meals and offers healthy product to help you accomplish you weight loss goals. It includes Journals, Weight Tracking, Exercise Tracking, Activity rack and Graphically report your results.
  • We are developing a Health and Wellness site for a Client that allows people to find the lowest price for their prescription drugs from thousands of pharmacies across the country by letting the pharmacies bid for your business.
  • The prospects are literally endless with DNN.
  • We will be developing a Barter system for a new Client in the next 3 months.
We have no intention of switching to any other CMS platform because everything we are looking for in a good CMS platform DNN has. Affordability, flexibility, rapid application development, profitability, it runs on the Microsoft Windows ASP.Net Platform with SQL Server and then has the strength of thousands of resources.

Evaluating Evoq Content and Competitors

Yes - We used Visual FoxPro and our own proprietary software language called Webc. It worked great for many years but the time to deploy was much longer and development also took longer because we did not have the same Tool Set that is available today with DNN and all of the Microsoft ASP.Net, tools and software that integrate with DNN.Shorter development time and faster deployment means you can be more competitive and still make a profit.
  • Price
  • Product Features
  • Product Usability
  • Product Reputation
  • Prior Experience with the Product
  • Vendor Reputation
  • Existing Relationship with the Vendor
  • Positive Sales Experience with the Vendor
  • Analyst Reports
  • Third-party Reviews

Product reputation by far, was our main deciding factor in transitioning to DNN.

We have been in this business for 28+ years so our Customer Service and the Quality of our Product to our Clients are the number one mission to our company. Since our reputation is so important to us we wanted partners that felt the same way and DNN gave us everything we needed to accomplish our goals and meet our Mission of providing the Best Quality Product and Customer Service to our Clients we possibly could.

I would not change anything, we tried Ektron CMS Platform and even though it is a good it just didn't meet all of our needs. We researched the other alternatives and everything we found just kept pointing to DNN as the overall leader in this market for features number of deployments, available Skins and Modules and the Customer Support. Just do a search on the internet for CMS software and read for yourself the answers are easy to come by.

I only wish we had done this sooner as it has been the best decision we have made in years.

Evoq Content Implementation

I would never look back and question our decision to implement DNN not only as the Platform for our own use but also to use it to develop a complete turnkey system for our Clients worldwide. Everything you need is available and there is more expertise around the globe than you could ever imagine.
Yes - 

Here was the step we used to implement DNN into our organization.

We installed locally and bought a 1 year Support Contract, we only did this to get up to speed as fast as possible. We were eager to get started and implement for our Clients, since it had all of the CMS features we were looking for.

Once we had a grip on installing the platform and the Modules then we built a test site.

Once we felt comfortable we built started creating our own Custom Modules. This is not necessary for the average company as there are plenty available that will meet their needs.

Next we built our first Clients website and that was it. Total from start to finish was about 3 months.

Change management was minimal - Since we were already well experienced programmers, database managers and project managers we only had to learn which Tools we wanted to use to implement the transitions. But it was easy for us. The average company that only needs to build a professional website and doesn't need to do custom programming like we have to do will not have a problem with the implementation of this software platform. If a company needs help then there are plenty of resources available.
  • Just taking the time to read the documentation but it is this way with anything you dive into.
  • Learning to use the available resources and where to find them.
  • Learning C# since we needed to write our own custom Modules, but since we were already experienced programmers in other languages this wa snot that big of a deal.

Evoq Content Support

I don't see how it could get any better unless they moved their staff into our offices. You have available to you any type of Support you need or want, both paid and free from thousands of developers and consultants all over the world. You might even find some on Mars if you look hard enough.Also, with all of the available resources available from your Browser you can literally find the answer to any question you have in a matter of minutes.
Quick Resolution
Good followup
Knowledgeable team
Problems get solved
Kept well informed
No escalation required
Immediate help available
Support understands my problem
Support cares about my success
Quick Initial Response
No - 

We did at first when we made the transition from our old software development platform and tools to DNN. But once we felt comfortable with the DNN Platform and we got familiar with the Development Tools and found that the Development Community was so helpful we did not feel that it was necessary any longer.

After about 3-4 months we felt like we had a really good grip on how to use and develop with the product.

When we first moved over to DNN, about 5 years ago, we used their paid support with an 800 # and the help and expertise was excellent. If we had a dumb question we would pick up the phone and call, we never sat there on hold waiting. They were quick to respond with the correct answers we needed.

Their Sales team is also very helpful on selecting the correct version for your needs which in a way is also a Customer Service related issue.

Using Evoq Content

I have not found anything that was as user friendly and easy to use with tons of Community Support as well as Corporate Support like Training Videos, Forums, Blogs, Documentation, Wiki, Free CodePlex downloads, Free Modules and then the DNN Store that has thousands of Skins and Application Modules to accomplish everything you need.
Like to use
Relatively simple
Easy to use
Well integrated
Quick to learn
Feel confident using
  • Adding Pages and Content are a breeze for even the novice as long as they know how to use a Browser and a Word Processor.
  • Creating internal or external Links from images or text is extremely easy.
  • Creating a professional looking website is a no brainer.
  • Adding Forms that store data to a database is not for the novice but with the right Module and a little help can be done.
  • SEO is a little difficult if you do not use the proper available Modules and know what you are doing. But many people know how to do it correctly so you can get there with the right tools and people.
  • CSS and layout you may need a little help from someone that understand s CSS to achieve a knockout professional looking site but there are plenty of people and tools available for this as well.
Yes - Excellent, most Skins you buy today are Responsive and many use Bootstrap 3.0 so you really don't have to know a lot about what you are doing if you buy the right Skin in the first place. DNN also gives you Tools to accomplish Redirection and Device Detection so you have what you need to create the total Mobile solution.