Content Management System: what is a CMS?

CMS are valuable allies for creating a website easily, optimizing it for search engines and developing an online business. They are used by both large groups and small businesses. Here is how a CMS works, its many advantages and a list of the main software on the market.

A CMS, or Content Management System, is a platform for creating and managing a website or application.

Who uses CMS?
CMS can be used by anyone who wants to create a website without having to rely on web development experts.

Content management systems can be used in many fields, from e-commerce to blogging, through the creation of showcase sites or online portfolios.

Why use a CMS?
CMSs are useful because of their accessibility. They represent a real saving of time and energy to establish a presence on the internet. They allow you to create and personalize a website very quickly, without even mastering computer languages. This is why more and more professionals are using a CMS, from e-commerce pure players to large B2B companies.

In the digital age, developing your brand's presence on the internet is no longer an option but a necessity: it's hard to take advantage of the competition without it.

As such, using a CMS can be a valuable asset, as it helps generate more qualified leads with minimal effort. At least when it is well exploited and perfectly suited to the needs of the company.

Indeed, not all CMS are equal, whether in terms of quality, ease of use or native features. Choosing a CMS is done according to specific criteria that vary depending on the type of business and activity that it carries out. In addition, you should know that there are traditional CMS, which are the most popular solution or headless CMS, interesting for those looking for a light and flexible alternative.

In addition, there are now alternative solutions to WordPress such as the CMS Hub, oriented towards inbound marketing, or Prestashop and Shopify, dedicated to e-commerce and dropshipping. These solutions are particularly interesting for professionals. Be careful to carefully study the different options in order to choose the CMS platform that is best suited to the company. Changing solution implies migrating your website, a project that must be carefully prepared.

Create and manage a business site in-house without technical knowledge
Before the appearance of CMS, it was imperative to master the art of computer programming to create a professional site or blog internally. Or possibly outsource the design and management of the various internet media to web developers. A choice that has not only disadvantages but which represents a more or less high cost.

In addition, it involves calling on the service provider as soon as a change needs to be made on the site. It is for all these reasons that many companies prefer to turn to a CMS: its predefined options and its various functionalities make it possible to create a website and to update it regularly, without even knowing the basics of computer coding.

Easily produce SEO optimized content
Having a professional site is good. Making it known and generating as many qualified leads as possible is better. But to appear high on Google and other search engines, it is essential to apply good SEO practices.

Here again, a CMS can be of great help, because it is often able to analyze content, monitor page performance and offer concrete solutions to optimize SEO.

Quickly develop the visibility of a brand on the internet
Creating a professional application or site from A to Z, without using any pre-designed tools, can take a lot of time and energy. Using a CMS is much less time-consuming: depending on the software used and the complexity of the web project, a few minutes to a few hours are enough to ensure the presence of a business online.

Simplified editor to easily format the text and integrate images, predefined templates, shared access to promote collaborative work: everything is done to make the creation of web content as intuitive and fast as possible. If necessary, many CMS even allow you to connect from mobile devices, which is practical for creating and managing content anywhere.

Build a scalable site
Technologies and the habits of Internet users are changing very quickly: to survive and continue to develop, companies must constantly adapt to them. This is where another major asset of CMS comes into play.

Indeed, content management systems are regularly updated to meet the new needs and expectations of consumers. For example :

  • Automatically adapt content to smartphones and other mobiles, essential in the mobile-first era.
  • Propose more “trendy” designs.
  • To build a site in Growth Driven Design.
  • Integrate more extensive security measures to meet new regulatory requirements for the protection of personal data. Options that make the CMS a valuable development tool for all brands.

How to choose a CMS?

To choose your CMS, pay attention to these criteria:

  1. Your needs
  2. Your development knowledge
  3. Your CMS budget

1. Your needs

The first question you should ask yourself when choosing your content management system is the nature of your site: What do you want to build?

Indeed, some CMS lend themselves particularly well to the construction of blogs, while others will be more relevant for the creation of an e-commerce site for example.

Compare the functionalities of the different CMS, take a look at the compatible plugins, and you will be able to create a first filter among all the possibilities available to you.

2. Your developing knowledge

Many CMS such as Hubspot's CMS Hub or Wordpress allow you to create a functional website without being a programming expert. Prefer this type of content management system if you do not have knowledge of computer languages.

However, many users want the freedom to add their own code to their site to customize functionality down to the smallest detail. If this is your case, be sure to choose a CMS that allows you to do this.

3. Your CMS budget

How much money do you want to invest in building your site or application? Be careful to plan your budget well so as not to have any surprises in the middle of the course. Here is a non-exhaustive list of factors to consider to optimize your CMS budget and choose the right system:

  • CMS cost
  • Cost of CMS plugins
  • Theme cost for your site
  • Programming costs (if applicable)
  • Maintenance costs

Added to this are costs independent of your choice of CMS, but to be taken into consideration all the same:

  • Domain name registration
  • Accommodation costs

What are the most popular CMS?
  1. CMS Hub
  2. WordPress
  3. SquareSpace
  4. Shopify
  5. PrestaShop
  6. Magento

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