The Guide to Craft CMS Development

Craft CMS professional Ryan Masuga shares a practical method for developing Craft CMS projects and version controlling them with Git.

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The Guide to Craft CMS Development by Ryan Masuga

Be a better Craft CMS developer right now.

Masuga Design has developed sites on Craft CMS since 2013. I'm sharing everything we know about setting up Craft projects and versioning them with Git. We have continually refined our approach from one project to the next, and now you can immediately benefit from our trial and error by reading The Guide to Craft CMS Development.

Make More Money With Craft

If you can competently and efficiently produce a solid product and market your Craft skills with confidence, you're going to be able to charge more money for your services. Our average project quote has grown significantly over the last few years, and our efficiency in setting up Craft projects means we are more profitable on those projects. 

I believe after reading this guide you'll feel confident enough to charge what you're worth, and be more efficient so that each project nets you more profit.

Separate Yourself From the Cruft

Your client isn't just buying a Craft site - they're buying a better version of themselves - and they're trusting you to deliver. So what separates you from any other Craft developer? It's the details. With my practical advice on efficiently setting up and deploying Craft projects, you can turn out your best work and make your clients sing your praises.

Topics Covered In The Craft CMS Guide

How can I get a site up and running quickly? How should I structure my project? What security measures can I implement? How can I best customize the CMS for the client? I answer these questions and more by drawing from our experience developing with Craft.

Project Organization

Project Organization


I show you a sensible way to structure a Craft site for secure, no-nonsense development. It's the method Masuga Design uses to build Craft sites.

Version Control

Version Control


How do you version control a Craft site with Git? What should you ignore? I answer these questions and more.

Multiple Environments

Multiple Environments


Config settings, environment variables, and .env files. A setup for working locally and deploying remotely that isn't overly complex.

Resources

Resources


From Craft Stack Exchange, to Mijingo, to Craft Link List and beyond, I discuss various Craft resources and their relative merits.

Automating Installs

Automating Installs


Save a ton of time and whip up new Craft sites very efficiently by automating the installation and setup process. I share how we start new Craft projects. You're sure to learn something new!

Coming from ExpressionEngine

Coming from ExpressionEngine


Many ExpressionEngine developers have taken an interest in Craft, just like us. For those people, I have a whole section of info that contrasts and compares the two systems.

The Early Word on the Craft Guide

Andrew Armitage

Having read @masuga’s Guide to #eecms, if you’re working with #craftcms, would recommend you go here gomasuga.com/craft-cms-guide #craftcmsguide

Andrew Armitage
Johnnie|Moylan

Looks interesting: gomasuga.com/craft-cms-guide from @gomasuga - The EE version was excellent, more of the same please. #craftcmsguide #craftcms

Johnnie|Moylan
Ryde Digital

Looking forward to the new @CraftCMS guide from @masuga .. keen to learn this CMS #craftcmsguide

Ryde Digital

Tweeting about the Craft guide? Use hashtag #craftcmsguide

What People Have Said About Ryan Masuga's Guide to ExpressionEngine Development

(My goal is to deliver the same value in the Craft Guide!)

Richard Whitmer (@panchco)

well that just made my life easier the past 2 weeks. Thanks

Richard Whitmer (@panchco)
@outofcontrol

Just finished ! Some great pointers to improve your EE workflow, worth the investment.

@outofcontrol
Steph Boudreau, Developer

I enjoyed your guide for EE2 - there were some parts that were far more useful for larger sites than I generally work on, but I like the knowledge!

—Steph Boudreau, Developer
Todd Richards (@wbdzynr)

Yes, I’m lame and boring, but the is one of the best things I’ve purchased for my business since my Mac Pro (and cheaper too!)

Todd Richards (@wbdzynr)
Julian Matthews, Developer, The Story Group

Your first book fundamentally changed many things we do.

—Julian Matthews, Developer, The Story Group
Susan Wohlgemuth, Developer

I learned a lot from the book about better ways to set up the site and having a master config.

—Susan Wohlgemuth, Developer
Andy Gosling, Developer

Your guide has been incredibly useful - I’ve learned so much from it and it has increased my understanding of how ExpressionEngine works ‘under the hood’. The information on version control was particularly valuable. Many thanks for producing the guide - it’s become indispensable!

—Andy Gosling, Developer
Andrew Armitage, Developer, A Digital

Found the guide really useful thank you – still referring to it as we try to reduce some of the 'technical debt' on our early sites.

—Andrew Armitage, Developer, A Digital
Nick McNeill, Interactive Director, The Brandon Agency

We bought your book for a new dev that did not have any EE experience. It's very well done and has been a great resource for him. Thanks also for devot-ee. It's been a super valuable resource for my team over the years.

—Nick McNeill, Interactive Director, The Brandon Agency
Randall Ward, Developer

The guide was helpful, especially git sections and your config setup.

—Randall Ward, Developer

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About the Author

Ryan Masuga

Ryan Masuga


I've used Craft CMS professionally since 2013, and Masuga Design has recently started all new client projects with it - because it's very often the best tool for the job. View our Craft page for more info on Masuga Design's experience using Craft.

I live in West Michigan with my wife and three young kids.