The vast majority of business owners will agree that it’s important to have a fresh, up-to-date website. Most companies will hire a web design and development company to help them create a well thought through and professional online presence. As part of the development, you’ll have the opportunity to discuss the content management system (CMS) your site will be built on.
A CMS makes websites easy to edit and add to without any coding experience. Your web design company will start by installing a theme and use the default customisation tools to change the way the site looks. Alternatively they will create a bespoke theme that is tailored to your requirements. Working with your web design company, you can specify what aspects of the site you will want control over – for example certain images or page copy – so you can make the changes yourself.
As well as making the website content easier to edit, the CMS easily enables the website functionality to be enhanced through the use of ‘plugins’. Plugins are pre-written code that perform certain functionality. Using plugins makes it easy for developers and site owners to easily add great new features such as contact forms, maps, social media planning tools, page caching to speed up your website’s load time, security and so on. They are often free and there are thousands to choose from. However, it’s important to discuss a plugin with your web design company before installing it via your CMS. Not all plugins will work well with your site and the functionality may not be quite what you are looking for. In these instances, it may be better to have a piece of bespoke code written for your site that creates the exact functionality you need.
A CMS will also update the core functionality and security on your site. For example, WordPress is constantly issuing updates and the latest versions give the site owners control over users, subscribers and menu items, to name but a few.
Here at The Marketing Campaign Company we have built quite a number of sites on WordPress. Wordpress is ‘open source’ so it’s free for anyone to use and has the largest user community of any open source CMS – which means it is constantly being upgraded and enhanced. Although WordPress was originally built primarily for blogging sites, it’s now very flexible and secure. There are alternatives, such as Joomla or Drupal, and some are better suited for certain types of sites, such as Magento for e-commerce businesses.
Here we’ve detailed some of the features of each:
|Drag & Drop Content||Plugin available|
|Image Resizing||Plugin required|
|Spellchecker||Plugin available||Plugin available|
|Content Scheduling||Limited||Plugin available|
|Web-based Translation Management||Plugin available||Limited|
|SEO Friendly URLs|
*Information from SocialCompare.