A Complete Beginner’s Guide to CMS? Top 5 Content Management Systems
CMS stands for Content Management System. It is a software application that allows users to create and modify the content for presentation. CMS stores all the content like text, images etc. in a database. So you don’t have to develop webpages to do that. To make it easy, CMS helps you to create and run a website even though you know nothing about coding. Imagine how tons of people are engaged in blogging. Not all of them know coding to design their blog site. But with the help of CMS they are able to create and edit content and share it globally.
CMS can handle a lot of other factors too. You can manage some behind the scene activities like SEO using it. Besides, once you create the content you don’t have to optimize it for different devices. CMS automatically does it. It integrates with other digital platforms like social networking sites and makes sharing content with other applications much easier. In short, CMS completely takes care of creation and sharing of content so that you can look into other important aspects of your website.
Below are some reasons which might help you understand the importance of CMS.
- Change your website’s look easily: There might be times when you would want to change the layout of your website, the colour of the background and text, the appearance or placement of certain buttons. A CMS provides you with a lot of in-built themes. With just a few clicks you can change the appearance of your website.
- Update Content easily: CMS allows you to add or edit content, insert images and make other necessary changes. You can do these tasks very easily without having to get involved in coding or making new HTML documents.
- Supports multiple accounts: If you have a team working to manage the content, then CMS allows different accounts to have access to a site. They can log in and update the content. You can also give admin access or restricted access to different people based on how much control you want them to have over your website.
- Extend functionality easily: There are a lot of plugins which allow you to add pretty much everything you want to add. And believe me, even if you haven’t heard of coding, you can still make a very professional looking website. The plugins are available for different purposes including e-commerce, social media, mailing lists etc.
- Make regular updates: Wherever the software supporting your website undergoes an update you will be notified. Simply downloading a patch will give you access to new functionalities. It’s advisable to backup your work before updating as a precautionary measure. Regular updates lend you the capability to adapt to the changing technology.
- Advanced SEO tools: Content management systems have a lot of tools and offer plugins which can ensure a higher rank of your website and drive more traffic. You can check how dense your content is with keywords. Besides, there are regular updates to adapt with the technological changes.
- Save time and money: Having a static website entails spending a lot of money in hiring a web designer, a web developer and approaching them for additional changes at times. But once you invest in a CMS you can do almost everything on your own instantly, without having to wait to see the changes live on your website.
Top Five Best CMS Platforms
After knowing what CMS is and why you should invest in a CMS, let’s now know in detail about the five most popular CMS platforms.
WordPress is definitely not a new word today. In fact it is the most popular site builder and supports more than 33% of websites in the world. This platform is extremely flexible and can be used for multiple purposes. With WordPress you can start a blog, run an online store, create a business website etc. You can also customize WordPress according to your needs.
In WordPress content, design and functionality are independent of each other. So you can modify anyone without seeing even the slightest change in the other two. WordPress offers a host of free and paid themes which you can apply with just a few clicks to control the appearance of your website. There are multiple plugins which can be easily downloaded to enjoy extended functionalities. There is no doubt that WordPress is super easy to use taking into account the number of people who use it.
- WordPress gives you complete control over your website. Since your website isn’t associated with any other web hosting company , it can be moved as per your wish.
- It offers you with a lot of extensions and add-ons with which you can make your website look and function exactly the way you want.
- There are thousands of templates which you can use on your website. With different customization options you can change any fragment of the template and make a completely unique website.
- A lot of commercially helpful tools like SEO, email marketing, E commerce, lead generation etc are integrated with WordPress and can work wonderfully well with it.
- If you are not using one of the WordPress hosting companies, then important aspects of your website like security , backups all become your sole responsibility. Slightest carelessness can lead to loss of your valuable data.
- It is not a built-in drag and drop website builder. So it becomes a bit difficult for the beginners to get acquainted with it and learn the basics.
- Security is a greater concern with WordPress . It is an open source platform, so it is easily accessible to hackers.
Joomla is an open source CMS. It is extensively used for building websites and applications. The interface is intuitive and allows users to inspect all its functionalities once they have signed up for it. Since the support structure is volunteer-driven , Joomla is free to use. There are multiple features and add-ons which attract users from all over the world.
Joomla is multilingual and supports around 75 languages. It helps you build responsive websites which can be easily accessed on all devices. The interface is very user friendly , so working with Joomla isn’t a tough job. You don’t have to worry much about the security as it provides two factor authentication to reduce the risk of hacking. With Joomla you can stay fully updated . It doesn’t require a lot of hustle. Updates can be done with a single click only.
- Since it is an open source, licensing fees are not something to worry about. Codes can be used for free.
- You can run an online store and manage your content on the same platform with Joomla since it supports a lot of ecommerce features.
- Deploying Joomla is super simple and takes just some minutes.
- There is a huge user community that bestows users with tips, tricks and tutorials to build their website.
- You can create SEO optimized sites with Joomla.
- Joomla is a bit more complex than WordPress. So if you do not have experience in website development , then implementing your own custom designs might not be easy.
- When multiple modules, plugins and extensions are installed at a time, Joomla shows compatibility issues.
- Despite there being several plugins and templates users have not found those enough to build a website of their specific choice.
Drupal is an open source Content Management System which can be downloaded for free. Millions of reputed companies use Drupal for their websites. It confers benefits in terms of cost, security, flexibility and accountability. After deploying, you can modify it to any extent.
You can create different types of content using Drupal like blogs ,articles etc and adjust the functionality suitable for the content type. With a plethora of plugins you can tweak pretty much everything as per your requirements. You can manage your page graphics with ease. There are in-built templates but you can edit other elements for complicated page configurations. There are features which make management of the page content very simple.
- You can create different types of content text, video, polls, forms and manage them easily.
- Although it provides for thousands of themes, it allows users to develop their own designs.
- It integrates with SEO and social media tools that helps in sharing content and boosting the website traffic.
- Organizing the content becomes very easy. Customs lists can be created and content can be categorized based on URL addresses.
- It is not easy to use and has a very steep learning curve.
- Being a comparatively new system, it is not compatible enough with other systems or softwares.
- Since it is loaded with innumerable tools and options , it’s loading time is more in comparison to WordPress.
This is a very flexible CMS platform suitable for enterprises and supports a lot of moving parts. It is an open source software and has multiple add-ons . Users have revealed that customization is very easy on this platform. It is favourable for beginners and also for big, commercial websites which require a lot of functionalities.
It integrates with a lot of other softwares. Starting from e commerce tools to SEO tools to analytics tools it is compatible with all of them. You can organize and manage content very easily and can even recycle old content. The backup feature keeps the pat version of your works safe allowing you to make changes without having to worry about them. Magnolia CMS ensures a meaningful user experience by sending notifications on what you might need. They can be on available software upgrades, content interaction etc.
- The learning curve is not steep. It is very user friendly and easy to work with.
- All your data will be completely safe with Magnolia CMS. It provides an impressive security service.
- Being very flexible, making modifications becomes extremely easy. So users can build a website that exactly fits their needs and imagination.
- There is no administrative dashboard.
- Magnolia lacks compatibility with its older versions. So migrations can be complicated and expensive.
- Uninstalling of modules is not systematics. Users find it too messy.
Wix is a cloud-based CMS platform. You can create your own website or run your online store using Wix. It can be used for multiple purposes like blogging, hosting an online forum, booking appointments and collecting details through forms.
There are a lot of templates which allow you to create your website and store exactly the way you like. The extent of personalization it offers is commendable. It is very flexible and scalable. Whenever the traffic surges it has tremendous capabilities to handle that. They offer a free plan which provides pretty much all the basic functionalities for building a website. But if you want to avail e commerce facilities then you can invest in one of their premium plans.
- It has options for drag and drop editing. It is easy to use and very user friendly with a smooth workflow.
- A lot of free templates are available to design the appearance of your website. Besides, a blank template is also available to build your website from scratch.
- You can create SEO optimized websites with Wix.
- When you use the Wix free plan it is mandatory to carry the wix branding on your websites.
- The drag and drop feature interferes with your creativity and limits certain options.
- You are not conferred with unlimited bandwidth or storage under any plan.
You might be coming across a lot of CMS platforms everyday while browsing for websites and going through their content but probably you were not aware of what CMS actually is. Hopefully now you have a basic knowledge on that.
We discussed the 5 most popular CMS platforms and even compared them. If you are about to start blogging or build a commercial website then this can be helful to pick the most suitable one to build your site.