Content management systems broke down barriers upon mainstream acceptance allowing anyone with a bit of common sense to create highly intuitive, functioning, visually aesthetic, user-friendly web content.
Choosing the right content management system for your business can literally make or break your digital presence and content strategy.
So, if you’re one of the individuals out there in the world-wide web still stuck in the dark ages, we’re here to show you all the various benefits that content management systems can have on your business and its growth.
Now let’s get to the basics.
What is a CMS?
CMS stands for content management system. CMS is a software or group of programs that are used to help manage the creation and organization of digital content.
Most content management systems also work as web content management systems (abbreviated WCM or WCMs), which specifically deal with management of web page content related to issues such as indexing and retrieval.
When it comes to content management systems, most of them have a front-end interface known as a content management application (CMA). A CMA is what allows individuals who are less-than savvy with web development and coding to manage their content in a more user-friendly fashion.
To date, the most popular content management system by far is WordPress. It by far dominates the market in terms of content management systems with a whopping 59.4% market share.
Even more crazy is the fact that WordPress literally is powering 26.4% of the web with companies such as The New York Times, People Magazine, Forbes and National Geographic all using this popular CMS.
When you use a CMS such as WordPress or Blogger, chances are you’re using it because you weren’t trained in web-development, and its user-friendly controls enable you to achieve your results without a massive headache.
They make the process easy and straightforward because literally anyone, even a 14-year-old kid can use a CMS like WordPress or Blogger.
There are two main types of content management systems. They are:
- Proprietary software
- Open source systems
Proprietary software is software that has been developed by a specific company and is distributed for sale, usually requiring a paid license.
Open source software is typically made available by project communities and available for use without the added burden of pricey licensing costs. They can be just as robust as proprietary content management software. Notable examples of open-source CMS are WordPress, Joomla!, Drupal and Magento.
How to choose the right one
There are several important factors to take into consideration when it comes to choosing which content management system is best for you and your business.
Individuals such as bloggers and artists looking to establish brand awareness and build an online community often look for different features in a content management system than large enterprises or e-commerce companies.
Are you going to be handling a lot of the responsibilities associated with your online content?
If so, you’ll definitely want to take into consideration how much programming experience you have under your belt. If the answer is not that much, then no worries, you’re in the majority. This simply means that you need to look for a content management system that is extremely user-friendly.
If you work for a major enterprise, and have a team of developers and writers at your disposal, then you’ll want to find a CMS that can support all of this and function properly with all of these components in mind.
You’ll want a CMS that is expansive and can handle business growth, versatile and offers optimal levels of security.
However, when it comes down to it, there are 4 ways fundamental ways that all content management systems can help any business, big or small, regardless of their nature.
4 Main Ways Content Management Systems Can Help
1. THEY GIVE YOU FULL CONTROL.
To put it simply, content management systems just make everything easy. Gone are the days when you must have a background in web development, visual design or coding in order to manage online content.
Content management systems offer easy publishing tools and help to make edits and revisions a total breeze. They include multi-level folder managements, and options to categorize your content and include tags so that everything is neatly organized and searchable.
Remember the days where you had to research and enter specific code in order to embed a video or image into your page, then trouble shoot when you had a syntax or placement error?
Platforms such as WordPress will allow you to embed pictures and videos by simply copying and pasting the image URL source directly into the text box. Then, you are able to customize the size, placement, description and alt tags all conveniently in one spot.
If you’re looking at it from less of a content development stand point and more of a web development perspective, they prove just as fruitful.
Popular CMS platforms such as WordPress offer users customizable themes and categorize them in terms of industry so that you can easily find one that suits your unique profession. You can customize font, colors, setup, arrangement and so much more.
Many content management systems also offer their own built-in analytics tools. Others offer extensions for such tools or plug-ins for more robust versions. These allow you to track engagement and conversions all conveniently in one spot.
2. THEY INCREASE EFFICIENCY
There’s no denying the simple fact that content management systems improve workflow. Everything is to the point and automatic.
They enable fast, efficient updates to a blog, page or site and convenient, user-friendly tools and options for enhancements and optimization without the need to understand coding, web development of visual design.
They also help improve efficiency when it comes to user-management by offering multi-leveled tiers of access and categorizing users based on stated preferences and permissions. You can have managers with full reign of the platform or contributors who are able to simply add content without the ability to modify or delete existing content.
From the content creation standpoint, platforms such as WordPress even offer post-scheduling options which help you to create a consistent and reliable flow of fresh content. Social sharing options are often also included in these packages, removing the pain of having to cross-promote on each individual platform.
Content management systems save you time and money. Point blank.
3. THEY CAN HELP INCREASE YOUR SEO RANKING
Content management systems also help to increase your organic search ranking in several ways revolving around relevancy, enhancing the user-experience and SEO best practices.
Fresh content is critical to your website’s SEO rankings because it increases indexing opportunities. This is why so many business have developed such an interested in blogging because they see the potential that these frequent updates can have on their organic search rank.
A solid user-friendly content management system will help contributors to keep your content freshly updated and also facilitate external contributions and user-generated content. If your content management system is complex, tricky or doesn’t offer features to help enable your SEO efforts, then you need to find a different one.
The user experience is a vital component in your website’s organic rank.
When your content management system enhances the user experience by having features that let’s say enhance mobile optimization, you get higher conversions, higher engagements and more traffic.
Google sees this and goes “Hey, people like this—I’m all about giving the people what they want—so I’m going to give this to more people”.
Features such as on-site search queries, tags and categories for specific content such as FAQs and Help pages and multi-level folder and file organization work to build trust with search engines. Users find these aspects favorable and as a result, search engines see your content as more credible and reliable.
SEO best practices
Content management systems also work because they help in the implementation of SEO best practices. Gone are the days where you have to be a whiz kid to get in on the SEO game.
With content management systems, you can create custom URLs, keyword enhanced H1s, H2s, rel canonical tags to avoid duplicate content issues and even optimize your visual content with the click of a button.
WordPress is amazing when it comes to this. The platform seamlessly integrates these options into the user experience giving you the option to add alt tags, descriptions and keywords to your images, as well as include location tagging and more.
It also boasts a wide array of extensions and plugins such as Yoast SEO to assist in these efforts.
4. THEY CAN IMPROVE BRANDING AND THE SPREAD OF BRAND AWARENESS
When you choose a robust content management system, you are able to open up access to all sorts of features and options that were previously only accessible to developers and coders.
Need a visual theme that’s in line with your brand identity? You don’t have to be an expert in HTML or CSS in order to do this. You don’t have to write pages and pages of code. You can literally just click on one of the endless customizable themes that so many of them have to offer.
WordPress has several options available for even their basic, free package.
With a good CMS, you can enhance the user experience and customize it to your liking so that your content is optimized to cater to your demographic in the best way possible.
It facilitates the creation of fresh and user-generated content, which increases engagement. When you have consistent and fresh content that is regularly engaged with, you are increasing your indexing, improving your SEO rank and establishing your business as an authority.
Other common features such as custom forms help with list building and social sharing tools also help to easily facilitate the distribution of your content and business by effortlessly spreading brand awareness.
Content management systems hold the keys to the success of your digital presence. They broke down barriers by enabling everyday individuals and business owners to take control of their digital presence.
A good content management system has a practically immeasurable ROI. They work optimize workflows, give you full control over the creation, implementation, editing and distribution of your content and they enhance the user experience and can help boost your organic search ranking, domain authority and identity.
When harnessed in the hands of a savvy individual, they really have the power to growth hack your business in ways you never could before.