What Is a CMS? And How To Choose One For Your Website

So you’ve decided you need a new website. Maybe you’ve already started looking for design services. You’ve done some research and you realise there’s a lot to consider.

For example, what CMS you want to use.

But if you’re still unsure about what a CMS actually is, you’re in the right place. In this blog post, we’ll explain exactly what is a CMS and how to choose the best one for your website.

What Is a CMS?

CMS stands for Content Management System. It’s the tool you use for managing the content of the website.

Even a simple website needs a CMS. But what does it mean on a day to day basis for your business? Well, the CMS is where you upload the content for your website, like videos, images and text.

Whenever you want to make updates to the content, it’s through the CMS that you’ll do so.

So it stands to reason than that you’ll want a CMS that is easy to use. Particularly in small business, when the person likely to be making updates to your website is you or a junior member of your team.

Things To Consider When Choosing Your CMS

The first thing to consider when choosing a CMS then, is whether it’s easy to use. But we’ve mentioned this already, so now we’ll move onto some more important considerations from a website design perspective.

Search Engine Optimisation, or SEO, is a big part of any website’s success. If you’re not sure what SEO is, read this blog post before going any further: Website Design With SEO Is Key To Online Marketing Success

So, it’s important to think about your SEO strategy before selecting a CMS.

Is your CMS search engine friendly? What will your sitemap look like? Can you target keywords and input metadata into the CMS? Some CMS’s are built with specific URL structures; how do these impact SEO?

You should be asking yourself all these questions when searching for the ideal CMS.

Some CMS’s may be great for one type of website, but poor for another (a content site vs. an eCommerce site, for example). So, functionality is also a key consideration.

Consider plugins; which ones are you likely to need? (Plugins are applications you can add to your CMS to facilitate additional features or functions.)

The best place to start is to make a list of all the design features and functions you want your website to have. For example, hospitality businesses might require the following from their website:

  • Smart use of images and videos to showcase the venue
  • Displayed online reviews from Google, Facebook, or TripAdvisor
  • “Call to action” buttons to encourage bookings
  • An independent booking system

A CMS also includes features for configuring the website, posting stories, dynamically generating pages and pretty much everything else you’d expect of a modern website.

WordPress is by far the most widely used CMS. It offers plenty of plugins, including those designed with SEO in mind, and we’ve found that it works really well as a content manager.

Why WordPress Is a Good CMS

There are lots of reasons why WordPress sites come highly recommended, including:

  1. You want control over content creation and publishing, including uploading of images and files.
    • With Visual Composer, you can build the page exactly how you’d like it to appear so it’s easy to add elements wherever you’d like.
  2. You want public and private sections to your website.
    • WordPress is sophisticated enough to allow for several people to login and access private areas, like members or subscribers.
  3. You want visitors to be able to interact with the content.
    • There’s virtually endless possibility for social sharing and other interactive content via the long list of WordPress plugins.
  4. You want rotating, blog style content to display – for example, front page article summaries with ‘read more’ links.
    • WordPress began as a blogging platform, and remains a popular choice for many beautiful websites; particularly blog-heavy ones.

If you would like advice on design and development, you want to install WordPress as your CMS, or talk to a specialist about creating a custom WordPress site, contact us today. We’re experts in WordPress development and WordPress web design, so we guarantee we can create an affordable website that ticks all your business boxes.

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