Should you use a content management system for your website?
1. Do you need to update your content more than once a month?
2. Are you planning on running a blog on your site?
3. Will non-technical people be updating/maintaining the site?
4. Do you require the ability to manage your site’s content from remote locations (w/o using special software)?
If the answer is yes to any of the above questions, you could benefit from a content management system. If you answered no to the above questions, you don’t really need CMS. It may not be worth the extra expense and time it takes to manage it. CMS can also affect your search engine results with complicated coding.
Sometimes its better to hire someone to manage your site for you, or teach someone in your company to update it with web editing software. Every company has different needs and you should weigh all the options before deciding.
Choosing a CMS Platform for Your Website
If you are thinking of incorporating CMS into your next website, be sure to do your homework. Content management systems add complex code to your site that can affect the searchability of your site.
There are many different approaches to CMS from free systems like WordPress, Drupal and Joomla to custom-developed systems. To help evaluate the options for your company, here are some questions to ask your web developer.
1. Is this system standards-compliant? You don’t want a lot of complicated code added to your site. Remember, simpler is better. Ask to see an example of a site built to current W3 standards.
2. Can you edit page title and description tags? This is an important component to search engine optimization that many CMS platforms don’t include.
3. Can you move stuff around? You should be able to move pages and sections around without a lot of fuss. Beware of rigid templates and expensive fees for moving a simple box.
4. Is it Easy to Make Changes? The point of CMS is to be able to make lots of little changes. It shouldn’t take more than 2 minutes for most people to make a simple change. Sometimes it can take up to a half hour or more.
5. Does it support Google Analytics? Beware of “integrated analytics”. Google is the standard.
If this sounds complicated to you, that’s because it is. These questions are a good start. The goal is to find someone who can answer then honestly and explain what they mean.