Magnolia - Review From A Backend Developer
June 23, 2021

Magnolia - Review From A Backend Developer

Alan Livie | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 7 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User

Overall Satisfaction with Magnolia

Our public website runs on Magnolia. It allows Marketing to design rich content without developer input. It also helps us introduce new products quickly. From a development perspective it allows us to add functionality easily via REST APIs, Filters etc.
  • Intuitive UI
  • Very customisable - easy to extend functionality of the CMS to fit business needs ie filters, REST endpoints
  • Great team support - our account manager always helpful as are the support team
  • Difficult at times to upgrade versions - moving from 5.6 to 5.7 was time consuming, 5.7 to 6.2 also has been challenging but support from Magnolia has been helpful
  • To build and troubleshoot the CMS requires Java dev skills - it is a powerful CMS but one only businesses with experienced Java developers should consider Magnolia
  • Quick to get new products available on website - in past we needed lots of dev effort - now Marketing and Product teams can do this if a template can be reused
  • Marketing can easily create landing pages for campaigns
Overall it's usable but does require some training to understand how it works
Generally it performs well. We've had occasional issues where CPU spikes and things slow down but that might not be Magnolia-related.

I like how easy it is to extend and customise the backend server-side aspects of Magnolia through OO Java code when subclassing filters and adding new functionality as required into the request/response lifecycle. I also like the ability to build REST API at Magnolia server-side as it means we can protect sensitive session data without the JavaScript on the frontend ever needing to pass directly.
We also considered using Contentful as we were looking at alternatives for having greater control over WYSIWYG content. We decided the best path would be to instead upgrade Magnolia to the latest version to get the benefits with Stories.

Do you think Magnolia delivers good value for the price?


Are you happy with Magnolia's feature set?


Did Magnolia live up to sales and marketing promises?

I wasn't involved with the selection/purchase process

Did implementation of Magnolia go as expected?


Would you buy Magnolia again?


Magnolia is ideal if you want to offer your Marketing team some freedoms to create pages but constrain them in a way so the pages they create conform to certain agreed rules. It is also suited to teams who use Java in-house as extending functionality of the CMS will require Java skills.

Magnolia Feature Ratings

WYSIWYG editor
Not Rated
Code quality / cleanliness
Admin section
Page templates
Mobile optimization / responsive design
Publishing workflow
Form generator
Not Rated
Content taxonomy
Not Rated
SEO support
Not Rated
Bulk management
Not Rated
Availability / breadth of extensions
Not Rated
Community / comment management
Not Rated
Internationalization / multi-language
Not Rated
Not Rated
Role-based user permissions
Not Rated

Using Magnolia

15 - Sales, Marketing, Product Owners, Software Developers, QA Testers
3 - 
Skills needed at CMS side to support any issues with content creation, publishing etc.
Java skills in development team for support with Java backend issues
IT/DevOps support for assistance with any AWS issues around the hosting and load balancing, CDN etc
  • Website product pages, cart, and checkout
  • REST API as middleware between website and 3rd party API's (ie commercetools)
  • Website marketing content
We have invested a lot of time and energy into tailoring a solution that works for the company.
We think the new features in v6.2 will help us get to the next level
We also don't have the resources to rebuild a website platform from scratch even if we wanted to

Magnolia Support

We have an account manager, Bradley who goes out of his way to help us. We're probably one of the smallest clients he deals with and yet he treats us as VIPs.
The technical support we get from Magnolia team is always quick and we get lots of help and advice overcoming issues
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
We have a package that works for us
Yes - Yes, always are
Yes, our account manager Bradley has been great whenever we have blockers, especially during the upgrade from 5.7 to 6.2.
Upgrading Magnolia is challenging but the support team have helped us get to the point we're almost ready to go