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Is It Worth Investing in a Content Management System (CMS)?

Content Management System

Imagine if you wanted to set up your blog or website and had to build everything from scratch.

You would have to use HTML, CSS, JS, to build and set up your database, administration interfaces, as well as login, authorized admin.

Then keep and update the information on your website.

All these can be overwhelming for a non-developer to handle.

The other way to go about all this is the use of a content management system (CMS). The evolution of content through to the technological advancement of the World Wide Web has moved from the hands of a few to those of the masses.

What is CMS?

A Content Management System (CMS) is a framework or an application that lets users create, modify, manage, archive, report, and publish their services, products, or other information to the public space.

It works more efficiently with structured contents such as documents or database records, but may also be used to manage content such as visual and audio files.

The Graphic User Interface (GUI) that comes with CMS makes interacting with a website's database user friendly. Based on the set templates, the contents of a CMS are typically stored in a database.

How Does CMS Work?

CMS allows users to manage content from an internal user interface referred to as a dashboard. There are a good number of CMS frameworks available with one-click installs. This makes it possible for a non-tech savvy client to use, navigate, and manage.

Most of the top-ranked CMS applications for small startups are open source and free to use. This means you do not have to be proficient with other components such as JavaScript, HTML, CSS, PHP, and MySQL.

Building a website with CMS is analogous to playing with your childhood plastic bricks. You can select what bricks work best to build your site. It allows you to write text and insert pictures and graphics directly from a control panel on the dashboard.

Websites are built with databases similar to Excel spreadsheets, with a secure and easy-to-use interface.

Types of Content Management Systems

  • Coupled or Traditional CMS: Traditional CMS has only been around 30 years. Over that time, additional forms of CMS have been developed. Traditional architectures attach the backend to the frontend of a website.

  • Decoupled CMS: Decoupled CMS architecture divides the backend and frontend management of a website into two disparate systems. It allows the technical employees in your organization to develop and create with flexibility, without forcing marketers to use software that’s too technical.

  • Headless CMS: Headless CMS architecture is similar to decoupled CMS architecture, but lacks a defined frontend system in which to publish. In a headless CMS environment, the system has lite content management and editorial capabilities but then publishes to a web-service or API that can transmit content to any system with Internet access. As a result, a headless CMS can publish the same content to a website, an app, a wearable device, or any device connected via the Internet of Things (IoT) because the content isn’t bound by a predetermined content structure.

Having your CMS hosted on the cloud can also help with proper backup and security, so you don’t have to constantly worry about backing up. With reliable cloud services, you can seamlessly manage your content safely over the cloud.

Benefits of CMS

One major benefit of a CMS is its collaborative nature. Multiple users can log on and contribute, schedule, or manage the content to be published. Because the interface is usually browser-based, you can access your CMS from any location and by multiple users.

The second benefit is that it allows non-technical people who don’t know programming languages to easily create and manage their own web content.

The WYSIWYG editor of a typical content management platform allows users to enter text and upload images without the need for any knowledge of HTML or CSS language for web development.

When a company uses CMS to publish its pages, it reduces its reliance on front-end engineers to make changes to the website, making it quicker and easier to publish new content.

CMSs come in different specs, each with its own set of features and advantages. Some are better suited for blogging; while others may be custom-made for eCommerce sites with features for pricing and accounting functionality. Specifics will vary based on your company’s needs and resources.

Here are some questions to consider in the evaluation process:

  • What is your budget?

  • What operations does the CMS need to maintain?

  • What are the technologies that the CMS needs to integrate with?

  • How easy is it to create and edit content?

  • How many different groups of users will there be?

  • Is the platform SEO-friendly?

  • How large is the developer community?

Getting answers to all the above questions can really guide you in selecting the right CMS for your business or organization.

Cloud Back-up for your CMS

Just like your computer gets damaged or hacked and you may need to reinstall your OS and start from scratch so is your website. Backing up your computer helps prevent data loss if anything unfortunate occurs, perhaps even more so.

Beyond taking the necessary security precautions to protect your website, you should also backup your website regularly. That way, if something unfortunate does occur, you won’t have to completely start over. Instead, you can easily have your site restored from your previous backup.

Simply put, a website backup is a copy of all of your website data and information.

The features available to you for backup depend mostly on the backup provider. As a general rule of thumb, the more the data that’s included as part of the backup, the better for you.

This is especially the case if your website runs on a content management system like WordPress, where you’ll need all of your site’s files, content, media, and databases to get it up and running again.

Website backups should be done on a regular basis. It won’t do you much good if you were to restore an old backup. The best-case scenario is either daily or weekly backups depending on how often you update your website.

Online backup services can greatly simplify the process. All you have to do is sign up for a service and the rest is taken care of for you. You don’t have to worry about remembering to back-up your website, or even securing your backups the right way.

Back up types to consider include:

  • Off-Site Backups: Your data is very important and needs to be protected from hackers or hardware failure. This means that you should have a backup that is located at an off-site protected location, not just on the conventional website server. Look for an online backup service that gives you the option to have off-site backups.

  • Automated Backups: If you were to create the backup for your website procrastination would probably stop you from getting it done as and when due. Our lives are busy, and you probably have a handful of website-oriented tasks you’re trying to complete every day as well. Automated backups take care of things for you at specified or scheduled times.

  • Redundant Backups: This is where your website files and folders will be stored in multiple server locations. Or, you’re having backups of backups made. This ensures that a single event won’t bring down your backups or storage, and you have multiple lines of defense, instead of a single point of failure.

Before choosing a content management system, it is worthwhile to evaluate your company’s information management practices and overall business goals with respect to the publishing of content.

You will need to begin by making a list of the business challenges you are trying to solve as well as any specific requirements you might have.

This will help you select the right content management system; the one that supports your business requirements rather than the most popular or most talked about.

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