In honour of the release of Drupal 8 here is a list of 8 of the best Drupal designs. I chose these designs because they truly display the power of Drupal. Anything can be achieved on this CMS. If you have any other sites you think should be on this list, we would love to see them! Please post some URLs in the comment section!
This website is very well designed. It is beautiful to look at and very easy to use both on desktop and mobile. With a beautiful mix of bright colours, iconography, and professional photography this could definitely be one of the most beautiful Drupal sites. This site will make anyone's trip to Sydney, Australia far easier to plan. As you navigate through the different attractions and sights offered in the area you can easily save what interests you as a "favourite" and have a database of all the things you want to do. As everyone knows, you always have limited time on vacation; with this site you can easily see how close each attraction is to the other, and figure out how to get from one destination to the next, saving you time and headache. I really like the metro/flat design look they chose to use beecase it is fun and inviting, perfect for a tourism website. The mobile experience is also very nice, and very helpful tool for people navigating the streets of a new city searching for that exciting vacation experience.
This bold and beautiful Drupal site is all about making a statement. The rich photography contrasted with a bright pink highlight colour truly sets them apart from other brewerie sites. They have kept text information to a minimum and instead let the photography do the talking. They are setting a tone and creating an experience that gets people interested in what they do. I am not much of a drinker, but after cruising their awesome website built on Drupal I want to go to their brewery and make myself a custom cask of whiskey! The site has a very nice fluid layout that is very easy to use on a mobile phone. This website is a true testament to Drupal's power. This is no standard theme, this is a unique experience built on a powerful CMS.
This bright Drupal site has a very youthful look to it. I am intrigued right away, however I am not exactly sure what they do when I first hit the page. Is it a record label? Is it a music blog? Oh, its a branding agency. I like the look of the website overall; the bright colours and modern texture-patterns give a nice sense of energy and youth. However, the responsive nature of the site is a bit buggy. When you resize the window it does not collapse perfectly. But when you view it on a mobile device it is much cleaner. I have a feeling there is some code that detects devices and displays a more appropriate layout. The bright colours contrasted with the old-timey typography really gives them a memorable look.
The Labor D website takes a nice approach of letting the work speak for itself. The website is spacious, understated, and muted. They could have made it bright and flashy, they could have made the website as bold as their client work, however, that would distract from their portfolio. Their work is what is most important and the website's design lets it sing. The services section is brilliant. Very simple, fun to interact with, and memorable. This is a company that will stand out in a client's mind when they are deciding who to go with.
The Examiner is a great example of the large scale capabilities of Drupal. This site is very well designed for a news site. Most news sites are very cluttered and overwhelming. This site uses a nice colour coding system to organize the stories which makes it easy for users to find the type of news they are interested in at a glance. They use a tactic I have become very fond of which is to present the global navigation at the bottom of the page as well as the top. Instead of a site map, they give you the same exact options and functionality you found at the top of the page without having to scroll back to the top of the page. This appears to be a good way to keep people moving through out your site. The mobile version of the site is very nice as well. Simple navigation and cleanly stacked layout make this site a pleasure to use whether you are sitting on your couch with your laptop or on the go with your mobile device.
This is by far the greatest car site I have come across. All of the other super-car sites are pretty ugly. Tesla is not only revolutionizing how you make cars, they are revolutionizing how you market them. The Tesla site is a fantastic example of Drupal being very customizable. I think a lot of people fear having some standard theme that has simply been re-skinned. Teslamotors.com shows that a Drupal site can be very intriguing, beautiful, and very user-friendly. I implore you to investigate this site just to see how cool the cars are and see how awesome Drupal can be with the right designers and the right developers.
For a government website, it is quite nice. The Obama website for his presidential campaign was also very beautiful. Besides the recent HealthCare.Gov fiasco, Obama's administration has been very successful on the web. The White House is a pretty big deal, so if they chose Drupal to build a large scale and beautiful site, then so should you. Whitehouse.gov is clean and easy to navigate. Overall it is a pretty standard site. But not every website has to be a parallax, fullwidth, ultra thrilling visual experience. Remember, good design is how it functions. And this site functions very well. Information is easily found and there is not an overwhelming amount of action items begging for your attention. It might be getting some leeway because it is a government website, but overall it is a well made site. And they even made it mobile friendly.
Novation proves once again Drupal is no "one layout to rule them all" CMS. I have been very intrigued with full width websites. This beautiful site truly uses the screen real estate without feeling cluttered. I think Novation does it proper with high grade imagery and light typeface choices. It has that immediate wow factor that gets people interested in a company. They proudly put their work front and centre, because at the end of the day, thats what really matters.