Understanding Content Management Systems (CMS)

We’re all victims of our own success. One day we create something simple, it becomes popular, we add to it and before you know we have a mess on our hands. As projects grow from small startups to enterprise initiatives, organization and management are critical factors to ensure the continual success of the project. This is especially true with a websites, and implementing a Content Management System can help keep your projects on track.

What are Content Management Systems

Content Management Systems (CMS) are applications or services that are used to manage content and related resources in a logical format.

How Content Management Systems are Offered

These systems are offered in both installed and hosted solutions, fitting the different needs and demands accordingly. Some examples of resources found in content management system can be documents, media, and web content.

Why Content Management Systems Are Becoming So Popular

Web Content Management Systems (WCMS) are becoming more prevalent in today’s web society and are a requirement for just about any active website.

Web Content Management Systems facilitate the management of the web pages that make up a site as well as all of the images (GIF, JPG, PNG, etc), audio (WAV, MP3, etc), video (WMV, MOV, etc), Flash, Silverlight, HTML, ASP, ASP.NET, PHP and other source files the site may contain all in one centralized location. This makes it possible for multiple subject matter experts to collaborate on projects while keeping management overhead at a minimum.

Some Content Management Systems (CMS) and Web Content Management Systems (WCMS) help with not only management of the sites, but also offer creation tools to aid in the creation of new sites as well. This way you don’t need to be a subject matter expert on the content, you can use the tools provided to easily create the necessary content. The primary goal of a content management system is to facilitate creation, maintenance and publishing of a collection of assets that make up a site.

Important Features of Advanced Content Management Systems

Some Content Management Systems even offer Ecommerce functionality including:

  • Displaying offerings for customers to purchase
  • Shopping Cart engine
  • Credit card processing
  • Customer Account Self Service

Important Considerations When Looking for a Content Management System

  • Does the Content Management System facilitate SEO and SEM?
  • Does the Content Management System offer Ecommerce functionality?
  • Does the Content Management System support user management and permissions?
  • Does the Content Management System run on my supported platforms?
  • Does the Content Management System offer hosting?

Content Control

Often we make ourselves the victim by not putting ourselves in control of the outcome. Content Management Systems put you in control of the content. Integrating advanced functionality like ecommerce puts not only in total control of the content, but also give you the power to add applications that generate content and transactions. Major websites require updates and maintenance to prevent from going stale and becoming obsolete. Web crawlers give preference to sites that are regularly updated and being actively managed and content management systems can keep your projects organized and under control.