Selecting the right CMS and implementing it properly can be the difference between success and failure of a web development project.
It's been an interesting ride watching the development and evolution of content management systems over the past 25 years. When we first started building websites and our clients wanted the ability to update them themselves, it seemed pretty simple. We used a database to store the content and simply built our clients a simple interface to update that content. Boy have those expectations changed over the years! It's no longer enough to just maintain content. Now we expect a CMS to be a platform that allows us to manage our web content, our brand, maybe even our social media properties. It is our belief that there is no out of the box CMS that can do all those things well. However, with the right experience behind them, they can be very powerful. We have truly built hundreds of websites on all sorts of content management systems over the years. We've got true web developers with experience to help you achieve your goals.
Each of these systems has their pros and cons. It's our responsibility to help our clients understand the benefits and weaknesses of each and select the CMS that best suits their needs. Then, we create a plan to leverage our development skills to close the gaps so our client has a solution that works.
How do you overcome weaknesses of modern content management systems?
For over 25 years, we have been building, managing and fixing content management systems. Because we have had a long-term commitment to having true web developers on our team, we have the ability to get "under the hood" of these systems and do the hard work of actually correcting the programming challenges they have. The most common issues we come across with today's most popular content management systems still revolve around search engine optimization. It's almost as if the people programming these systems don't care about marketing. Well, because SEO is such a strong part of our business, we do. So, our web developers know how to make the adjustments needed to keep content management systems from creating things like blocked content sections or duplicate content.
Which is the best content management system?
Like our dads told us, make sure you use the right tool for the job. The right CMS depends on a handful of variables that are specific to your business. In our discovery process, we will ask you questions like: Do you have an ERP we are integrating with? Does your team have familiarity with a current CMS? Do we have HIPAA or other compliance concerns? Of course, this isn't an exhaustive list, but you get the idea. Our job is to bring best-in-breed content management systems to the table and guide you to selecting the right one.
What about proprietary code and homegrown content management systems?
The reality is that no CMS is truly ready to go out of the box. So, whether your web developer is going to use plugins and widgets to make the website fit your needs, or they are going to custom-code adjustments; your website is going to have proprietary code in it. There is no getting around that, and we won't sugarcoat that reality for you. We will do our part to improve the CMS in a professional way and back it up with the same customer service we have provided our clients for over 25 years.
Will I own my website?
That depends. You will absolutely own the content, but some content management systems are offered in a SaaS platform. HubSpot CMS is this way. You don't own the underlying architecture, but you do own the content. With other platforms like Drupal or WordPress, yes you do own the website, and it is portable from one host to another.
Is WordPress safe?
If you set it and forget it, no. WordPress is great because it is free. But because it is free and everyone can access the source code, it is highly susceptible to security issues if it is neglected. In our WordPress hosting environment we pay close attention to each one, and we will not allow clients to remain in our environment, if they choose to neglect their website. That puts our other clients at risk. Of course we offer turnkey WordPress web hosting so our clients can trust that we've got them covered.