Because your website is now such a vital tool to your business, choosing the most suitable Content Management System (CMS) will be a decision with long-lasting implications.
Technology investments should always be preceded by a set evaluation process to clearly assess your corporate needs and requirements. When choosing a CMS there are 4 questions of particular importance to be answered:
1. Who’s going to be using it?
With different departments using an integrated CMS, your solution should cater for the skill-sets of all your staff.
- What is the technical ability of your editorial team? A CMS with an easy in-line text editor would be best for HTML-illiterate editors.
- What programming language are your developers’ skilled in? Systems based on .NET, for example, are not ideal for a team of PHP programmers.
- Does Marketing need to use the CMS? A system with simple tools for making small website design and layout changes will save you time and money.
2. Does it integrate?
Reviewing your current software should be a priority before you begin searching. If the CMS you choose doesn’t easily integrate with your databases, for example, this will cause your developers all kinds of headaches.
Also consider future software requirements. A CMS that easily connects both to your current infrastructure and to other roadmapped investments will avoid complex and time-consuming development in the years ahead.
3. Where can it be hosted?
If you can host the CMS in the cloud rather than on servers at your own premises, you should examine this option.
The cloud has obvious benefits, but you must consider where your data will be stored, how it will be accessed, and how secure it will be from unwelcome eyes.
4. What support is offered, if any?
What’s the standard of after-sales training and support being offered by the potential CMS provider? How accessible is this support, and is the vendor out to delight you as a customer?
Lastly, what level of training will your staff need, how will it be delivered, and is it part of the package?
Never rush – get expert advice.
You should never rush or be pressured by a vendor into committing to a solution. Take time to answer these questions, and to align the answers with your budget and business goals.
It’s also useful to visit relevant customer forums to gain a better understanding of the suitability of your CMS options. But if you have any doubts, you should seek impartial advice specific to your requirements from industry experts and vendor agnostic software integration companies.