the latest version of the friendly cms

Umbraco 13 is here - What's new and how can it help you?

This week sees the latest release from Umbraco.

Version 13 is another step forward for the platform in its usability, and its suitability at the ‘enterprise’ end of the market. Improvements to the performance and extendibility of Umbraco are great for organisations of all sizes.

Read on for some of the highlights – and how they can benefit your roadmap and budget.

Webhooks improving extendibility

Umbraco is designed to be extended, both by developers creating custom features, but also via integration with the other platforms in your ecosystem.

Umbraco 12 added a content delivery API which runs on two-way integration between the CMS and your other platforms – this lets us use Umbraco in a headless ecosystem to power the content for apps, in store displays and more.

In Umbraco 13, we have the addition of Webhooks. Webhooks are a lightweight integration method based on a one-way request, triggered by an event – so something happens in your web application and we ‘push’ that information to another system to do something.

Unlike a traditional API, where the external system must periodically ‘ask’ for the update, the webhook only fires when there IS one, saving resources. They have different use cases, but where an update is one-way, a webhook can be a less resource intensive solution.

The implementation includes a back office UI too – meaning it’s possible to construct no-code webhooks inside Umbraco.

Serious about enterprise

We already know that Umbraco can work for enterprise clients like the ICO, and Novuna, but sometimes those with very large sites have had to work hard to create a scalable set up.

Recent developments at Umbraco HQ, like aligning their release cadence to Microsoft, adding ecommerce to the core product, and refining their headless offer are indicative of a business that’s growing up – and becoming a more serious enterprise candidate.

The latest version is no different, adding lazy loading content support, designed to help the very largest of sites perform better and consume fewer server resources (which can help reduce hosting costs – and reduce the carbon footprint of your digital estate). No matter the size of your website, a more efficient system is better.

All of those changes are making Umbraco more compelling and viable as an alternative to Sitecore, Adobe Experience Manager and other enterprise DXPs.

Block grid editor for delightful content creation

The latest version of Umbraco has improved the editing experience, meaning that content managers can create more flexible layouts with the toolkit that ships with Umbraco.

Most of our clients will have an extended content experience in place already either through custom development or an extension, but support for this editing style directly within Umbraco will help if you have a new project.

The more sophisticated the out of the box features get, the more you can divert your budget to things that really add value for your users.

Modernising the technology

When we comb through release notes, so many of the updates are to very detailed things low down the tech stack, like updating to .NET 8 and the switch to a Minimal Hosting Model.

If we listed them all here we’d likely see a lot of glazed looks and people starting to scroll their phone for something they suddenly realised was urgent…

But, the reason that you should care is that these changes fall under a handful of overarching purposes:

  • Making the underlying tech more efficient and performant
  • Making the platform more secure
  • Making Umbraco easier for developers to work with

All of which have a net impact on what you can get for your technology budget.

If you do want the full list, you can always check the Umbraco release notes.

Long term support

Another reason to get excited about v.13 is that it’s a long term support version – if you upgraded to 13 now, you get a full 3 years of support without another upgrade.

We recommend to most clients that they have some sort of upgrade roadmap in place. Moving from LTS to LTS is a good strategy where you want to keep your estate secure and performant, but you don’t need access to all the latest features as they are launched.

How Shout can help

If this is all feeling a little unclear, we can help you make sense of the upcoming Umbraco roadmap and how it aligns with your digital goals.

Whether you want to do full scale new web development, or you want a little advice on the best approach to keep your estate up to date, let us be your guide.

We’ve been working with Umbraco – and a range of other content management platforms – for decades, and are experts in the design, build and optimisation of digital products for a range of clients.

Chat to our friendly team about your digital ambition, and get the confidence to move forward.

What’s new in Umbraco 14 

13 May 2024

Umbraco 14, set to be released on 30th May 2024, brings exciting changes to the popular CMS platform. 

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