- Rahul Neelakantan
Introduction to CMS
A content management system, often abbreviated as CMS, it’s a software that helps users create, manage, and modify, i.e. work with content.
It is made of two core parts –
- Content management application (CMA) – This the front facing part of application, where the user interacts & adds content.
- Content delivery application (CDA) – Behind the scenes, backend part of application, which handles maintenance & delivery of content.
Types of CMS
- Component Content Management System – Organizes content at a granular level, i.e. every table/paragraph/etc are stored & versioned. Instead of managing it page by page. With these type of CMS we can do maximum content reuse. They are not used often in major products.
- Web Content Management System – This type of CMS lets users manage digital components of a website. Examples are WordPress, Drupal, etc. for which the user can get started with it, with very little prior knowledge.
- Document Management System – A document management system (DMS) is a system used to receive, track, manage and store documents and reduce paper. These systems allow for create, update, delete, search, tagging of electronic documents/images, etc.
- Digital Asset Management System – It allows for storing multimedia content like Video, photo, other multimedia and graphical content. Similar to Google Drive, etc.
- Enterprise Content Management System – it allows for collecting, organizing & delivers organization’s documents with security features. It also has a certain retention period, ensuring no unnecessary documentation content takes up space.
WordPress Dominates CMS space
WordPress is the leader in CMS space with over 39.0% market share, currently powering more than 75 million sites and powering more than 35% of internet. It is still growing thanks to its robust community. Here is the market share of each CMS.
CMS Market Share, Why is WordPress still Popular?
- It’s open source and free – WordPress is open source available in GitHub, anyone can download it and use it for creating his/her website.
- Straightforward to use – The user just needs to concentrate on the content, rest of the complex inner workings are taken care by WordPress.
- SEO-friendly – WordPress is SEO friendly out of the box, due to the following reasons.
- Proper HTML markup – Uses HTML5
- SEO-friendly permalinks – you can configure these as per your need.
- Title tag and Headings – Every page needs a title by default and allows for headings.
- Easy content creation – Search engines give better rankings for good content.
- Optimized Images – Easy to update ALT tags, descriptions, etc.
- Top-notch Security – so that your site doesn’t get hacked.
- Mobile Optimization – Comes with AMP support by default. AMP is Accelerated Mobile pages, standard formed by google.
- Highly customizable – Everything on WordPress is customizable from header to footer. You can change themes, add widgets, etc.
- Has plugins for almost everything – If you want to build forms, you have a plugin for that, if you want to optimize for SEO, add new widgets, for every minor/major change, you want to do on WordPress, we have a plugin. There are thousands of plugins both free & paid.
- Good hosting support – All major host support WordPress, like GoDaddy, BlueHost, WordPress.com etc. They also give free SSL with WordPress.
Do you really need CMS?
How much control are you willing to give up?
Building a system with some architecture will always have pros and cons. So, any new requirements to the system, need more work as to make the architecture support it. There is always a difference in building something from scratch verses modifying existing architecture.
How often will content updates be necessary?
If all your future work is supported by the same architecture then it makes sense to go with CMS. If architectural changes are needed sometimes, it’s better to have a system built based on the necessity to handle future scenarios
Have you budgeted for up-front costs?
Most of the CMS have some up-front costs, i.e. either you’ll be building the CMS from scratch or buying it off the shelf, both are costly affairs.
Are you prepared for ongoing maintenance?
Having an CMS means we have to commit to it, i.e. some scenarios might not work, to handle that there may be cost involved it updating it or buying supplement programs.
CMS (Content Management System) is a very useful tool to manage content. If you’re writing blogs, then having a CMS like WordPress, Drupal, etc. would be very useful to create blogs with it. If you’re working with files, Google Drive, One Drive, Dropbox are the right tools. So, everything depends on the use case, but be aware that these tools make your life easier.