Every business strategy, from marketing to manufacturing, is spun around improving customer satisfaction. This truism is no news to us, but the notable fact is that it applies to even our business website and content. Why? Because if you wish to build a customer-centric company, your website – the face of your company, should reflect the same.
You need a strong content management system (CMS) which makes it possible for your website to adapt to and evolve with your customers’ ever-changing tastes and preferences. Especially if you are a startup, you have to make sure that you are picking the right CMS for your company since, for most startups, the major conversion point from a lead to a customer is the website.
A content management system can indeed help you effectively create and manage your digital content, and it can provide an interface for all your employees to collaborate within; some of the most famous ones include WordPress and Joomla (see more). The type of content management system you choose for your company can make or break your whole marketing setup, which makes it absolutely crucial to select the right CMS.
Here are a few basic questions you need to ask yourself to ensure that you pick the right content management system:
1. Can you edit the content easily?
Before investing in a tool, it is paramount that you find out how easy the CMS is to work with, especially for content editing. Check to see if you can easily insert images, update texts, upload documents etc. It is also important to check if it’s easy to add new web pages. Why? Your website needs to change with the demands, requirements, and trends, and the CMS should make that easy for you. Ask your web partner to give you a thorough demo of the CMS so that you can get firsthand experience before investing in it and thereby make an informed choice to purchase.
Here’s the takeaway: Make sure that the CMS is very intuitive and friendly to use for both the tech and non-tech employees.
2. Is it SEO-friendly?
One of the most important points to remember is don’t choose a CMS which can negatively impact your efforts to search-optimize your content.
Here are some things you must keep in mind:
- The CMS must allow you to add unique titles and labels for your post, tailored to suit the content of the page and also SEO optimized.
- The URLs the CMS generates for your web pages should be neat and simple, instead of www.abc.com/page189$XZ2–that’s not good for your SEO.
- Your platform must be able to integrate with other SEO optimization tools.
3. Did you check to see how secure the platform is?
Hire a web designer or a tech expert to analyze the potential security issues and see if your CMS can address them or can accommodate tools that can address them. For example, if someone hacks your website, what actions will the CMS company take? To clarify the security issues, you should also take the time to read the online reviews about your CMS company, get in touch with previous users and get a first-hand opinion if possible.
For example, if the existing users tell you that they are having to constantly upgrade their system with security code patches, that’s not a very good sign and you probably should consider a different CMS company.
4. Does the CMS require any licensing fees?
There might be some costs you are neglecting, and for a startup, that might not bode well.
For some CMS platforms, a one-time fee or a licensing fee may be required to use the product unconditionally, which in many cases is reasonable. But for some platforms, you might incur additional charges whenever you want to update or upgrade, and you must keep such costs in mind before picking out a platform. In some cases, even adding additional plugins and extensions might cost you. Make sure you know how much cost the CMS platform might incur now and in the future too.
5. Will the CMS work with your server or technical configurations?
Not all website hosters are compatible with all content management systems. You must make sure that your CMS will work perfectly with your IT configurations. If you are not adept at doing so, hire a freelancer to help you check whether the CMS is compatible with your web server, because obviously you shouldn’t end up spending your dollars on a tool that might not even work for you.
In many cases, your IT configurations block out a number of websites, especially those that seem like personal blogs. Check to see these limitations first. For example, some IT departments block-out the majority of the WordPress blogs and in such cases, you won’t be able to access the platform using your office IT configurations. Not good!
6. Can the CMS accommodate web analytics?
If you are running a business, you need metrics to measure your progress. That makes it extremely important to ensure that your CMS will accommodate the tracking and measuring of your performance. You must check to see if it can integrate with analytics tools like Google Webmaster and Google Analytics.
To measure your lead generation and lead activity and understand how you are doing and what changes you might need to implement, your CMS must also be able to integrate with lead generation tools.
Here’s the takeaway. Selecting the right content management system requires two things:
- List your needs, requirements and business goals
- Strip down the CMS feature by feature and review each one to understand how well it fits with the above list
About Niraj Ranjan Rout
Niraj is the CEO and Founder of Hiver, an app that turns Gmail into a powerful customer support and collaboration tool. Read more about Hiver in Business Insider, Inc., Hubspot, and Lifehack.
Follow Niraj on Twitter @nirajr