Things to Look for in a Web CMS?
Once you have decided that you will need a CMS driven website, you will have to choose a CMS that is perfect for your business and suits your requirements. No need not buy an enterprise-level CMS if your work can be done by a simple CMS with less functionality. Consider the following points:
The most important criterion to select a CMS is its vendor. The CMS vendor should be professional, ensure your website’s security, provide seamless support, have reputed clients, use the latest technology and provide regular updates with improvements, fixes & enhancements.
You also need to consider the time taken by the vendor to deploy the CMS or to move the content of your existing website to your new site running on CMS. The vendor should follow proper migration strategies and use automated tools for the same.
CMS Should Fit Your Requirements
You should have clear defined set of requirements and the basic functionality you need from a CMS. You should even consider your future requirements, vision and goals as you are going to spend on a CMS that works well for you for the next few years.
You should even consider your business’ primary function. The requirements of an eCommerce business would vary from the requirements of an enterprise.
- Look for the editor, its features & how much control it allows over the appearance of your website.
- Proper management of images, files, videos etc. is important; see if there are editing tools for them and whether you can attach files. Also check how they are displayed to the site visitors and whether they are indexed by the search function.
- Website’s search functionality is necessary to have. You have to check for its indexing, search speed, ranking, customization etc.
CMS should be user-friendly and operated without much technical knowledge. It should even be flexible and allow continuous updates without the help of any professional. A non-technical person should be able to use it easily. Content editing interface should be contextual, interface to build templates and content modules should be intuitive and there should be a flowchart based workflow approval interface.
In case of the requirement of feedback form or a community on your website, your CMS should support the same. You should also know about the tools that are there to communicate and interact with customers if you need an interactive website. User Roles & Permissions
If you have many administrators, you might require setting user roles and permissions. Some users might only require editing, while some users might require publishing on your website. To cater to this need, you will have to look for CMS that supports multiple roles, specially if you are an enterprise.
A CMS should have standardized back-end to provide a good user experience. The features (like edit, view, delete etc.) as well as the UI (including check-boxes, radio-buttons) should be standard and remain same across all the sections of the CMS.
Extra & Unnecessary Features
Well, if you want a simple website, you don’t require all the fancy & sophisticated features that you find in an enterprise CMS. Never select a CMS that offers the maximum features, instead look for the one which has all the features that you require. No need not pay for the features you don’t need.
Select a CMS that allows you to customize as per your choices and preferences. A perfect CMS for you will be the one which provides you the flexibility to put your own ideas and innovate, allowing you to design your site according to your creativity.
Multiple Website Support
If you are an enterprise or a growing business you might require multiple websites. A different website for say a different product or service or a different website for a different country you are operating in or a different mobile optimized website specially for your smart phone users. If not right now, maybe in future you might want multiple websites as your business expands.
So you need to see whether a CMS supports managing and running multiple websites or not.
This again is important to have if you have your branches across different countries of the world or different language speaking countries. If not now, may be in future you might think of expanding and targeting foreign countries. So this feature is equally important to have in a CMS.
The choice of a CMS will totally depend on your business requirements along with the above essential features that are not only good to have but necessary to have in your CMS. You need to prioritize your needs, shortlist them and then evaluate various CMSs.
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