5 Reasons Why Every Website NEEDS a Content Management System
According to a recent study, over 65% websites on the internet aren’t making use of a content management system (CMS). In an online world where content is king, this seems appalling, so we’re here to do our bit of education!
A CMS is a software system (often FREE) that enables easy editing of your website content, allowing multiple administrators to log in and keep it up to date. Being found on Google, (in our opinion the most important website in the world!) should always be a key objective of your business, no matter what industry you are in and having a CMS is a hugely important factor in it. To be ranked highly for your keywords/phrases, you need to show Google that your site is a resource for others. One of the easiest ways to encourage this is through lots of regularly updated and highly engaging pages of text.
With a CMS you can very easily (often even from your phone) post a news item, a photo of a job well done, or a testimonial to your site. The CMS will often ping Google (give them a gentle nudge) to alert them that new content has been added and that they should ‘index’ it (include in their results). Even somebody that is not very technical should be able to create a new page on the website, add a special offer, etc.
Without a CMS – a website will normally have to be maintained by a Developer, making it expensive, time-consuming and therefore normally neglected. I would go as far to say that any website that is more than 1 page, should ALWAYS be on a CMS.
Using a CMS does not need to be expensive, in fact in many cases it will save you money. While we do use some enterprise CMSs, we are huge advocates of some of the free ones too. We’ll be doing a separate article on those soon, as one-size does not fit all, but our favourites are; WordPress, Drupal, LocomotiveCMS and Magento.
Unlike other agencies, we DO NOT promote using our own CMS and would recommend to any business that they steer clear of them. In-house CMSs start off with great intentions, but can never compete with a CMS that has thousands of developers chipping in. Again – we’ll cover the reasons fully in another article, but you want to look for an Open Source CMS.
Below are our top 5 reasons why you should us a CMS:
With a CMS, no coding is normally needed to manage the site; this allows you to make changes to the site without having to depend on any professional developer. You can solely be in charge of your website and its content. Of course if you want a huge change done that the CMS isn’t able to do, then you’ll still need that developer, but if you choose an Open Source CMS, chances are the developer will be able to use an existing plugin, dramatically reducing the cost.
4) Great Tools
It’s easy to forget the tools that these CMSs have built in, from Spell Check and Spam prevention, these things are often left out of non-managed sites. Being able to quickly export data to a spreadsheet, send an email to all of your customers, or optimise all your news posts for Google in one go – these can really make a difference to your business.
3) Ease of Management
We recently took on a re-build for a small business owner that for over 3 years had been paying a developer to maintain his 120+ page website. The site was not mobile friendly, was struggling in the search engines and had links all over it that no longer worked. The customer would email the developer with a menu link change for instance, the developer would download the latest version of the site’s code and change the link in all 120+ pages, before uploading the files to the server again. To save time, he obviously resorted to a ‘find and replace’ search, but over the years this search had missed many changes meaning the site was complete chaos! Some links worked, some didn’t – some pages even showed an old phone number for the business!
Using a CMS – the customer would have gone to the menu, changed the text and that would update across the whole site instantly!
2) Search Engine Friendly
One of the best parts about CMS is how it offers to be SEO friendly! SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) is one of the most important strategies that need to be kept in mind when posting website content. SEO increases the likelihood for your content to show up on Google when searched for by users. So if you wish to appear higher in search results then Content Management Systems can prove to be of great help with their built in SEO tools like keyword monitoring and sitemap creations! Many even have tools that automatically carry out work on the site’s content to help the search engine’s understand what is there.
1) Easy re-designing
This is the one that is normally over-looked. I mean, who is thinking about their next website when they are getting one developed? Websites that have been built on Content Management Systems have their designs created and stored separately from the content. This allows you to change the look of your website whenever you want, without having to create all of the pages, products, etc again. There are even tools that allow you to export from one CMS and import to another!
So there you have it – that’s why you need a CMS. Keep an eye out as soon we’ll cover which CMS you should use for your business.