Saturday, March 1, 2014

62- What CMS Is and Why It Is Important to You

What CMS Is and Why It Is Important to You

What CMS Is and Why It Is Important to You

First things first. CMS stands for Content Management System. It pretty much describes itself. WordPress, Drupal, and Joomla are all examples of a CMS, but a CMS can be custom made should you feel like reinventing the wheel. Unless your website is completely static, or you only want to update it once a year or so, there really is no good reason to not use a CMS to develop your website. 

They take up more room on the server and put a larger load on the server to deliver a webpage, but really the load is not a big deal and content loads pretty fast. I bring this up because if you only want a static page that never changes, it would be less of a security risk - since CMS's are so popular there are a lot of people at work to hack the software and the websites made with them - and there are easier options to create a simple page like that. That being said, if you want to be able to easily add and change content on your website, or if you have no coding ability, then using one of the three options above is a better way to go.

For a full account of the differences between these CMS's, follow the first link at the end of the article. All three have reasons to be used, but I feel for the majority of people looking to make their own website, either for business or personal use, WordPress was the easiest to use and setup. WordPress also was the easiest to update, made even easier in version 3.8.

A CMS is really awesome for a few reasons:

They simplify adding and modifying content.
They simplify the process of customizing your site's design.
They simplify making changes to the structure of your site.

Basically, a CMS makes everything easier. You can get your hands dirty modifying code to make your site unique, or you can use the tools they provide to customize your site. Once a CMS is installed, you can have a working website with real content as quick as you can produce the content. A blog can be up and running in minutes.

Adding content through a CMS is usually as simple as clicking "Add Post", writing a blog post, and clicking "Publish". Simple as that you just added an entire page, that looks like the rest of your site, and it could have been done in a matter of minute. If you have to use a WYSIWYG editor to do the same thing you are looking at a significantly longer time to create and upload the page to your website through ftp. 

If you are hard coding your site, you are likely doubling the time to get a page up using an editor. Now, multiply this time by the number of pages and posts you plan on having on your website, both now and in the future. The time savings and convenience offered by a CMS is clear when you think about it and have a little education on what they are and what they do.

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