Avoiding Common Mistakes in Multisite Selection: Top Pitfalls to Watch Out For

Over the years, we have been involved in more than 100 multisite implementations. So we know what the biggest pitfalls are for companies starting with multisite or wanting to replace their current multisite. These pitfalls are as often in technology as in how this technology is used: the multisite configuration. What are the pitfalls?

Not enough flexibility in design

Not enough flexibility in design

It is crucial to analyze beforehand how flexible you are in influencing the form of the websites within a multisite. Within the multisite, is it only possible to customize the logo? Or, for example, can you also implement corporate colors and specific styling (rounded corners or not), add your own fonts or even change themes within the site, giving all parts a different shape?

We regularly come across (failed) multisite implementations where the stakeholder of an individual website complains about the limitations in the template when it comes to implementing the branding of the individual brand, for example.

Too little structure and layering in multisite architecture

Too little structure and layering in multisite architecture

Limited flexibility in the multisite architecture can pose a risk to the success of implementation and adoption by content marketers. Therefore, look closely at the structure of the multisite framework and pay extra attention to components such as the master template, the ability for child themes, central updates and integrations.

If the framework is insufficiently put together, it can lead to additional costs for customizing the structure and can also lead to lower usability for content marketers, which can result in lower adoption and usage of the CMS.

This, in turn, can lead to lower productivity and higher TCO (total cost of ownership). It is therefore important to fully understand the layering of multisite technology and choose a solution with sufficient flexibility to meet the needs of the organization.

Too dependent on a development partner

Too dependent on a development partner

Every marketer hates going to development for every little thing. And so, with a multisite, you have to carefully consider in advance which things you want to be able to modify 'no-code', i.e. independently. Consider, for example, the styling of components, the addition of an extra language or the complete layout of new pages. These are things that go beyond a simple text change or adding a news item. Of course, these more complex changes to the form are related to the flexibility of the multisite CMS.

No multicontent options

No multicontent options

With multicontent, you can create and manage content globally or locally in a multisite structure. This can save costs by avoiding duplicate storage of media files and reducing the number of operations required to edit or replace them.

In addition, the multisite does need the ability to set up access control for content creation and editing, which can help increase productivity and efficiency and ensure security.

The lack of a multisite vision

The lack of a multisite vision

Perhaps the main pitfall we see with multisite implementations. There is often too little knowledge of multisite, resulting in the choice of a CMS that has never been set up for multisite purposes, such as WordPress, for example. Both the implementation partner and the customer lack a good vision of scalability and manageability of such a solution. A mediocre structure is set up that depends on plugins and lacks all flexibility. Multisite is a discipline and there are CMSs that are specifically designed for this.

Needless to say, we assume you won't fall into these 5 pitfalls of multisite selection. If you're in an orientation and would like a second opinion? Send us a message and we'll be happy to tell you about Plate's multisite vision.

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