Why do you need to have a Content Management System (CMS)?

16.3.2010
Content Management System

What is a Content Management System? - A Content Management System (CMS) allows you to quickly and easily update the content of your website anytime, directly yourself without going though your web company.

It allows the structure to be created and managed by your web company and includes the layout, graphic design, navigation and typography.

Basically speaking, the Content Management System will allow a non-technical person to update the words and pictures on your website, without interfering with the general aesthetics set out by your web company.

<h3>What benefit do I get from having a CMS? </h3>

You can update your website quickly and easily, this means that visitors returning to your website are able to see fresh content, giving the impression that you´re an innovative company. This also suggests that the services and products your customers receive are also under constant improvement, and as a customer they will see this.

Your search engine ranking will increase and improve - Search engines like to see fresh and appropriate content — A CMS allows you to provide fresh content easily.

<h3>A CMS is instant and free!</h3>

Each time you have to ask your web company to update your website, it will cost you money. Even the best web companies cannot always respond instantly, so if you don´t have a CMS there is a time delay between you providing the content and it going live.

<h3>What types of CMS are there?</h3>

Off the shelf Content Management System - A software package that can be added on to your non-CMS website.

Advantages:

  • Cheap and powerful
  • Does not require high skill levels from your web developer

Disadvantages:

  • Doesn´t include features specific to your project, it is a one size fits all.
  • Can be difficult to use, with lots of buttons and features you´ll never need.
  • You´re dependent on two suppliers -  the software supplier and your web developer.
  • If the software supplier releases a new version, you either get stuck with an out of date version or have to upgrade.
  • You may lose features you like and this will incur a cost.
    There will be a limit to what the CMS can do, if your website really takes off, you may need to scrap it and start again.

<h3>Fully Custom Content Management System</h3>

The Content Management System is created specifically for your website.

Advantages:

  • It´s much easier to use, you only get functions you need
    You upgrade your CMS only when you want to, and only with new features that you need.
  • You don´t have to wait for a new feature to be developed for all customers, you can take advantage of new technology NOW.
  • A custom CMS can grow and change with your needs, you will never need to scrap it and start again from scratch.
    You are working with one supplier.

Disadvantages:

  • Costs more than an off the shelf solution
  • Your web development company needs to have better software skills to deliver a successful solution.
  • Why not modify an off the shelf CMS? - This is an alternative.
  • Take an off the shelf CMS and modify it for your particular project.

The problem with this though, is that you get all the cost and complexity disadvantages of a Custom CMS but only short term advantages.

You will be tied to a CMS version which quickly goes out of date with little or no chance of upgrading to the new version as your version is now specific to your project.

<h3>How to choose a CMS</h3>

Simple answer: try before you buy - If an off the shelf CMS is all you´ll ever need, it will be cheaper; but if you want flexibility and feel that your website will become more and more important over the coming years, you need to consider a Custom CMS.

Arkom Creative Technology develops Custom Content Management Systems for websites and e-commerce applications both large and small.

For a no obligation demonstration of a Custom CMS call 0844 375 0742 now and ask for Alan or George.

Alan Easter • Arkom Limited • t 0844 375 0742 • f 0844 375 0743 • w www.arkom.co.uk

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