In this age of digital relevance, quality content is becoming more important as it holds the key to achieving the impact, reach, engagement, and converts businesses and enterprises thrive to obtain. To help individuals or companies streamline their content creation and stay on top of every content they produce, Content Management Systems (CMS) have grown in popularity in recent years. Also, with CMS softwares, you can manage your content and website without the hassle of understanding code or waiting for the web admin to implement marketing.
What is CMS?
CMS is a software used to manage the creation and modification of digital content. It allows users to create, edit, collaborate on, publish and store digital content. CMS provides an interface that allows for the above without needing to write code from scratch.
CMS comprises content management application (CMA) and content delivery application (CDA). Content management application (CMA) is the front-end user interface that allows users to create, design, modify and remove content from a website, even with limited or no HTML knowledge. Content delivery application (CDA) is the backend interface that compiles the content, manages it, and supports the delivery of created content.
The main characteristics of CMS include intuitive indexing, search and retrieval, format management, revision control, and publishing. Other features are search engine optimization-friendly URLs, integrated ad online help, easy wizard-based install and versioning procedures, an admin panel with support for multiple languages, minimal server requirements, and full template support and customizable templates.
Content management systems are easy to use, even for someone with little or no technical knowledge. They have built-in search functions that enable users to find information easily by searching for it – like you would use a search engine. You can also remove, unpublish, update, and create content easily, adding new pages as needed – without waiting for a developer to write the code. Users can add content on CMS from anywhere with a device connected to the internet. Updates are easy to roll out.
Finding the best CMS for your business might be tricky. I’ll highlight ten content management systems that have stood the test of time, their features and why you should consider them. Shall we?
WordPress is the simplest and most popular way to create your website or blog from a single source. It is free and open source – meaning you can edit, customize and use it as you wish. It is used by 64.2% of all websites whose CMS we know, powering over 43.3% of all websites on the internet. It is free to download and install, and it accommodates beginners with no coding or programming knowledge. A few benefits of using WordPress to set up your website or blog include:
Its flexibility and adaptability for running large and complex sites, managing small businesses, and creating personal blogs. Its many themes are easily accessible, allowing companies to adapt to their changing needs. WordPress is easy to install and set up in a few minutes with little or no technical know-how. It can be installed via the hosting provider or directly from wordpress.org. The easy-to-manage admin dashboard has every feature to customize a site, from heading to layout, page creation, and content creation.
It has themes that give an array of choices for the look and feel of your site – some are free, and others can be purchased from marketplaces and third-party designers.
Plugins – small pieces of code designed to perform specific tasks – allow users to add features to the site. Plugins can also be purchased from third-party developers and activated as needed.
WordPress includes plugins for search engine optimization; hence WordPress sites tend to rank high for keywords. WordPress sites are responsive to mobile, have a built-in blog feature accessible from any device, and have a community that offers support.
Joomla is one of the best free CMS options since it has many inviting features. It is search engine friendly, mobile friendly, has unlimited designs, supports 76 languages, flexible and fully extensible, supporting multi-user permission levels. It’s an excellent open-source CMS for any website that needs comprehensive content management, especially educational sites or complex websites such as social networks.
Drupal is the second most popular free CMS after WordPress. It is also open-source and favored by developers. It is flexible but not beginner friendly, as you will need to hire a developer to set it up. It supports complicated websites with heavy data. You will need to have a hosting account and domain. Drupal has easy user management, ease of content addition, and different modules available – like a plugin. It has a great support community too. Adding extra items or changing appearance after setup gets tricky.
HubSpot is designed with a marketing edge excellent for marketers, content creators, startup eCommerce, and newbie web builders. It is great for generating leads, nurturing customer and their retention, and reporting web analytics. The following features make it stand out: user-friendly dashboard, ease of transition from one website to another, easy website builder, ease of publishing and editing, A/B testing, and standard hosting – no need for a third-party hosting, an advantage that your subscription covers.
Its lowest plan goes for $40 and its highest plan is at $3,200 per month, and it has a small collection of templates. Additionally, because it is an all-in-one platform, you do not have complete control of your site.
Squarespace is an all-in-one hosting platform with over 100 website templates to pick from, eCommerce, and marketing features. It has a website builder that has a drag-and-drop feature for easy customization. It has a free 14 days trial that does not require a credit card, a free domain for the first year of the annual website plan, and four price packages ranging from $16 to $46 per month. It accepts third-party extensions but no third-party integrations.
Wix is a design-driven website-building platform with the option to start free – it requires that you use a Wix subdomain and entertain ads. It has a drop-and-drag feature with over 500 pre-made design templates to choose from, making website building fun. Users can access animation, video background, and scroll effects to help express their brand. Wix is mobile-optimized, integrating blogging and social media. It does not have an eCommerce store available in the free plan, but users can access this option when they upgrade to the pro plan. You will have to export data manually once your business outgrows the platform.
Wix adapts to a cross-section of industries ranging from entrepreneurs, designers, musicians, photographers, developers, and restaurant owners, as it has specialized features to cater to the demands of these industries.
Bolt is a free, open-source platform allowing you to customize your site as you wish. Its features include: a slick interface, extensions, and multi-users – allows for task delegation and assigned roles, easy image upload plus automated resize feature, and is mobile responsive.
Ghost is another open-source tool that is compatible with third-party apps and with a built-in SEO. The user-focused nature and pre-made themes for personal and commercial use makes it suitable for blogging, newsletters and subscription-based contents. This tool, however, does not support e-commerce and standard websites. It has an open source and a premium version – both support basic sharing and SEO.
Shopify is a popular all-in-one hosting eCommerce site that takes care of marketing, payment, secure transaction, and shipping. It supports blogging, product page design, and a customer support portal. The users pay a monthly subscription to access the entire website builder, shopping cart functionality, and website launch necessities like domain name, hosting, and app store for expansions. It is ideal for anyone interested in selling digital or physical products online. It takes care of updates, backup, and security. It has a drag-and-drop feature, extensions, and themes, supporting physical stores with an online presence. It has 24/7 support and a community.
A con is the high cost of maintenance of add-ons. It has a three days free trial that does not require your credit card details. You can connect to an existing domain or buy one from Shopify or a third party. It is cloud-based and hosted, allowing users to access accounts from any device and anywhere.
Big Commerce is an all-in-one platform that offers hosting, security, backup, and CMS. It has a free trial plan that comes with a free domain and 24/7 support that includes email and live chat. It has limited themes and integration. It automatically upgrades when you exceed the sales amount for your subscription plan, which translates to an increase in the monthly subscription. Big Commerce can be used with WordPress to integrate the blogging option.
There are a lot of listed options to choose from when picking a CMS tool; some come with free trials, and others with subscription plans. However, when deciding, ensure you align the selected tools with the business’s goals, ease of use, and the resources available to spend.