Content Management Systems

Over the past decade, we’ve began to see a rise in Content Management Systems (CMS). So what exactly is a CMS, you ask?

Basically, a CMS is a system in which your website and all of its content are maintained within a database underneath a simple user interface. This allows for editable content posts, plugins, and page-builder capabilties. These CMS systems are frequently used for blogs, popular news sites, and other sites with regular posts and/or updates.

Now let’s take a step back and imagine the life of a web developer back in 1995. Your client is requesting a twenty page site with a gallery, news section, and the possibility of posting articles. Wow. So, here you are face-to-face with code, and lots of it! Remember, it’s 1995, so every single feature your client desires will have to be created using custom code. This means HTML, CSS, PHP, Javascript and way more if your client is interested in e-commerce, login capabilities, or advanced security features.

Now, fast-forward to 2015, where our web world is crawling with CMS. Every morning on the Chicago subway, I see advertisments for Squarespace, a DIY CMS targeted towards small businesses and young artists in need of a quick portfolio. Now, YOU can create & maintain your own website with a simple monthly or yearly charge. However, it’s not as easy as it sounds, even in 2015. Here’s a few of the pros & cons:

PROS

  • Ability to create a website with no prior web coding experience.
  • Easily add content. Popular amongst marketing specialists.
  • You don’t have to hire a web developer.
  • Easy SEO (Search Engine Optimization).

CONS

So now we’ve learned a few new things about CMS, but which companies offer the best services? Is there a better CMS system? I’ve used all of the services listed below, but personally, I prefer WordPress & Drupal. How about we break it down for you?

WORDPRESS

  • Easy interface.
  • Frequent security and feature updates. Can be both good and bad, as some updates actually break your site!
  • THOUSANSDS of third-party plugins, so if there’s some kind of bizarre feature that you want, you can probably find it.
  • Assess to PHP & CSS. Very, very helpful to developers who want to customize.
  • Adding users with different permissions is easy.
  • Free.

DRUPAL

  • Uses highly-customizable modules. You can do almost anything in Drupal.
  • Good for complex sites.
  • A bit more stable than WordPress.
  • Can be a bit difficult if you’re not a developer. Very back-end friendly.
  • Free.

SQUARESPACE

  • Template focused.
  • Not developer friendly.
  • Highly moderated & controlled environment. Rarely breaks.
  • Not free.

WIX

  • Simple Drag-and-Drop interface.
  • Not developer friendly.
  • Strongest support infrustructure ever.
  • Not free.

JOOMLA

  • One of the easiest interfaces of all the competition.
  • Not as many features as Drupal & WordPress.
  • Strong developer community.
  • Less SEO abilities.

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