Choosing the right content management system (CMS) can be a confusing process. With different platforms available at varying different price brackets, we’ve picked out the top nine features that you should be looking for when selecting the best CMS for your business…
Ease of use
First and foremost, you’re going to want a platform that is user friendly and functional. A CMS can be highly advanced and offer many perks, but if it’s difficult to use, then you’re not going to be able to make the most of it. The frustrations of a tricky platform aren’t to be underestimated, so ‘try before you buy’ to make sure you’re comfortable and confident with using the CMS.
Whilst most of us dabble with design tools, marketers don’t tend to be graphic designers. Choosing a CMS with a wide array of customisable templates and designs for landing pages and emails will save you a great deal of time and effort down, or investment in outsourcing to skilled professionals further down the line.
Once you’re sure of usability and design functionality, then performance is next on the list. Can the platform provide all of the functions you will require? Make a checklist of what is important to you; from the basics of email marketing campaign creation and blogs set-up, to the more advanced social media management and chatbot creation, all the way to reporting dashboards and testing capabilities. Assess what you’ll be capitalising on most and ensure the platform meets your needs.
When choosing a CMS, it’s important to ensure it’ll be able to take on the volume of data you require, whilst handling it safely and securely. Ideally it needs to be able to link up with other platforms and share data across these, especially if you’re gaining data from external sources such as CRM or interactive content platforms.
Extensions and addons
As marketers, we use a wide array of digital tools. Check that your best loved tools are compatible with the CMS you have your sights on, with necessary integration compatibility, or the options to support extensions or add-ons.
Help and support
Where the inevitable glitches occur or you need some advice, then customer support is crucial. Look for a CMS that has a good customer service record, with accessible points of contact. Some CMS even come complete with their own knowledge base sections, allowing you to cut out the middleman and self-serve when it comes to those niggling FAQs.
It isn’t always a guarantee that the platform you choose will have the fonts and colours required within their base package for you to fully personalise to your branding. Make sure the customisation options allow you to set to your desired preferences, or to upload specific fonts, imagery and designs to ensure all you produce on the CMS is fully on brand.
It is worth going with a tried and tested platform, and often popularity is a sign of a user friendly, well designed and functioning CMS that delivers results. Plus if a CMS is popular, then it’s likely to be receiving greater investment than less popular systems.
Ultimately, what can be the final decider on which CMS you choose will be your budget and the cost of the platform. Different CMS come in different price brackets, and the more you pay the more you get so it can be worth the investment to see decent ROI. Assess your budget carefully to decide what you want to allocate month on month to a CMS.