CMS tool is critical for success of the website development project. In the first part of my CMS article series, CMS: A powerful tool for Non-Coders, I had discussed brief on CMS basics like its types, features, additional features and also its benefits. In this article, I shall discuss techniques to select the right CMS for your website project. Also, I will share some examples to help you master the same.
There are many CMS platforms available. Each comes with its own strengths and weaknesses. I share my 3D formula which will help you master your domain:
Dare to Read: It is pertinent that you acquire full knowledge about each platform. Hence, take out time, research and study about each CMS platform,
Dive in yourself: Get hands on experience of installing, developing and managing each CMS (at least one full cycle). This will give you ample clarity on each CMS features, ease of using and limitations of each CMS.
Discuss with experts: Join CMS communities, read reviews and feedbacks from other users to get a better understanding of the CMS’s strengths and weaknesses, share your experiences and ask queries. You don’t need to waste time by reinventing the wheel, learn from others and move on. Discussion with experts will give you full idea of what to expect from which platform and help you make an informed decision in future.
Now that you are ready, let’s move straight to the topic:
Selecting right CMS tool
Choosing the right Content Management System (CMS) for your project can be a challenging task as it can impact the success of your website. Let’s consider you are working on your client project. I share 7 steps technique you should apply when selecting the CMS for this project:
- Start with end goal: Before starting, you should plan your short term & long term goal. Do you want to remain a developer, or want to move up as advisor and working on multiple projects? For latter option, select a CMS tool that provides enough ease for your client to manage on his own, without you. Do not make a system which is complex enough to create and manage. Remember, if your client couldn’t manage, it will thrash your reputation. But ease provided to your client will always tag you as his advisor as well as generate a strong word of mouth.
- Define your requirements: Before you start your search, it’s important to have a clear understanding of your website’s requirements. Consider factors such as the type of website you want to create, the size of your site, scalability i.e. handling increased traffic, adding more content, the features you would need to support growth and the ease of adding those new features. This will help you narrow down your choices and choose a CMS tool that is best suited for your project.
- User experience: Consider the user experience of the CMS, including the ease of development and the ease of updating as well as managing content. Hence, you should choose a CMS tool that provides customization options, such as user-friendly templates, themes, and plugins. This will give you the flexibility to make your website look and function the way you want it to.
- SEO: Considering the SEO friendliness of the CMS is of utmost importance. It is one of the major factors for success of your project in future. It includes the ability to design customized designing slugs or permalinks, page titles, meta descriptions as well as the availability of SEO-friendly templates and plugins.
- Security: Consider the security of the CMS, including the frequency of security updates, the availability of security plugins, and the ability to handle sensitive information. Choose a CMS that has a strong reputation for security. You need to ensure that your website and its content are protected from attacks and other security threats.
- Future support: Technical expertise: Consider the technical expertise required to manage and maintain the CMS, including the need for coding skills and the availability of technical support. Choose a CMS tool that has a strong support community. This will ensure that you have access to the help and resources you need when you need them.
- Budget: Consider the cost of the CMS, including the upfront cost, cost of any add-ons or plugins. renewal costs of themes and plugins, ongoing costs for regular maintenance and hosting.
By considering these key factors, you can choose a CMS that is best suited for your project, meets your needs, and will help you achieve your goals.
Having considered these 7 steps as mentioned above, it may so happen that you arrive at multiple options of CMS tools, not just one. Hence to zero in on the most appropriate option, you can also have open discussion with your client and share the pros and cons of each option. Based on each platform’s usability, scalability, security, manageability, affordability and future supportability, both of you can mutually arrive at a better informed and well-accepted option. Let’s take some examples to apply this technique and understand it better:
Example 1: Selecting CMS tool for blogging website
For a blog website, WordPress is a good Content Management System (CMS) platform to consider. WordPress is widely used for blogging and has a large community of users and developers, making it a reliable and flexible option. Here are some reasons why I consider WordPress is a good CMS for blogging:
- User-friendly interface: WordPress has a user-friendly interface that is easy to use, even for those without technical expertise.
- Customizable themes: WordPress has a wide range of customizable themes that allow you to change the look and feel of your blog.
- Plugins: WordPress has a large library of plugins that can be used to add new features and functionality to your blog, such as SEO optimization, social media integration, and security features.
- SEO-friendly: WordPress is SEO-friendly and has many features and plugins that can help you optimize your blog for search engines.
- Mobile-responsive: Many WordPress themes are mobile-responsive, ensuring that your blog will look good on any device, including smartphones and tablets.
- Large community: WordPress has a large community of users and developers, making it easy to find support and resources when you need them.
- Cost: Most of the plugins in WordPress are freely available. Secondly, its free plugins are growing at a rapid rate with its adoption. Hence, it becomes very cost-effective to go ahead with WordPress as CMS tool.
These are just a few of the reasons why WordPress is a good CMS for blogging. With its user-friendly interface, customizable themes, and large library of plugins & developers’ community, WordPress is a great choice for bloggers of all levels.
Example 2: Selecting CMS tool for E-commerce site
E-commerce is very widely used type of website these days. According to a research, currently 39% websites are being developed for e-commerce purpose. Since, each e-commerce project has specific needs; there are more than one CMS option for e-commerce. To select the most appropriate CMS tool for your e-commerce project, you should be aware of some selected CMS tools other than the above mentioned 7 steps technique. These CMS are specifically good choices for e-commerce websites, brief on each CMS tool is as following:
Magento: Magento is a popular and robust e-commerce platform that offers a range of features, including product management, order management, and payment processing. It also offers a range of customization options, including themes and extensions.
Shopify: Shopify is a cloud-based e-commerce platform that offers a range of features, including product management, order management, and payment processing. It is user-friendly and easy to set up, making it a good option for those without technical expertise.
WooCommerce: WooCommerce is a plugin for WordPress that allows you to turn your WordPress website into an e-commerce store. It offers a range of features, including product management, order management, and payment processing, and has a large library of plugins and themes to choose from.
BigCommerce: BigCommerce is a cloud-based e-commerce solution that provides a simple and user-friendly platform for managing products, orders, and payments. With its easy setup and range of features, BigCommerce is ideal for those without technical expertise looking to start an online store.
These are just a few of the popularly used e-commerce CMS tools to consider. When selecting any of these tools for your e-commerce store, consider these in combination with 7 steps technique.
In conclusion, you must consider the 7 steps technique for any given project. If you apply this technique, I am 100% confident that you will never go wrong. Although, all of the above steps may or may not be applicable for same project, but being familiar and considering these steps will help you a lot to take an well informed decision and select the right CMS. By taking these steps, you can be confident enough that you have selected a CMS tool that will definitely help you building a successful website project.
I truly hope that you would like this article. I would keenly wait for your views. Please feel free to share your inputs / feedback / queries, if any. Also I am full time and passionate CMS developer. Do contact me on firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss, consult or hire my services.
If you want me to cover any particular topic in forthcoming articles, please share topic name of your choice. I shall be happy to help you.