Options for building a web app with blog features (Please no Wordpress, Drupal, or Joomla)

I am being asked to build a website for a realtor. They don’t want it to have a search feature as they are an apartment locator but what they do want is website with a blog feature, and the ability to put featured apartments that they can switch in and out of.

Eventually they want to make it more complex and little more data driven. I have built countless larval projects and mean stack applications but I since I am too close to them it may be helpful to hear opinions on what would be the quickest/ more feasible route to take.

I’d prefer suggestions outside of CMS like Wordpress and Drupal because I am mostly a JS and Laravel developer and also and not a fan of someone of the cms practices. Also, other frameworks or stacks are welcome.


One of my side businesses is web service for property management companies. Most of my clients using the service have over 100 homes they manage for their customers. I created a simple backend admin site where they can mark which ones are vacant (kind of like marking your client’s featured apartments). The admin site also allows the client to update all the information on each property. Along with a text description and the ability to upload/manage photos for each property, I made several different categories and features in various dropdown menus and checkboxes which they can simply select and then are automatically sorted and formatted when displaying the property information on their main site.

I used a MSSQL database to store the property data and then used php for the admin site and for pulling the property info info the main site.

You can make it as simple or complex as you want to do, but you definitely do not have to use a framework or Wordpress to implement what you have described.

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As @RandellDawson said, you don’t need a framework for this. A simple CRUD database admin can take care of this.

A problem with database-driven template/blog pages is every page starts to look the same, and only the main photos look different. But end-users/clients are usually not HTML versed and we can’t expect them to learn html just to update their page or customize the look of their page.

On one client, I made them several CUSTOM-TAGS they can insert anywhere on their text/copy, that way they can customize the look of their content page without knowing a bit of HTML. They just insert the tags as plain text in their copy.


Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Sed pretium,
accumsan, tortor enim mattis diam, in molestie quam nisi vel urna. [YOUTUBE=abcdefg,align=left,width=400]Curabitur velit metus, mollis quis enim eget, mattis semper risus. Proin
consequat arcu et tellus commodo faucibus quis nec ante. Mauris
suscipit dignissim finibus.

To display a bootstrap slideshow on their page, they just insert (using ID# of photos they uploaded)

To display an embedded Vimeo video:

Display a youtube video, with ID#

[PULLQUOTE@left@400px=This is a quote from some famous person]

[PHOTO=123456@right@400px=This is caption under this right aligned photo sized to 400pixels width]

Display other pages related to this page, using page id#

You get the idea…

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@owel - I like the idea of this for a blog.

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