We understand the requirements of our clients and help them build rich, elegant and effective websites using Content Management System tools . In this way our customers become independent
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WHY SHOULD I USE A CMS
There are several possible reasons for using a Content Management System, but the main reason for using a CMS is to make creating and editing of content simple and easy. Often developers forget that this is the main purpose of a CMS and in search of more and more functionality, they cripple themselves (or their customers).
Content doesn’t just include text however. Sometimes the content you need on a site is a contact form or user authentication system. The trick is to find the CMS that provides the functionality without sacrificing ease of use for yourself or, depending on the situation, your customer. A good CMS will allow you to spend more time focused on the design of the frontend then on implementing extensions or functionality.
5 MOST COMMON MISTAKES
MISTAKE 1: CHOOSING A GEEK FRIENDLY CMS
First and foremost it is imperative for those developers building sites for customers that they remember that not everyone is as tech savvy as you are.Even if you’ve found a CMS that you like and work well with, it doesn’t matter unless you’re making the site for yourself. The most important factor in the site should be whether or not the customer can use the site like they imagine it should work. So, in the long run, it will be better for your health if you pick a CMS with a simple admin interface, even if you have to customize it more to meet the customer’s needs.
MISTAKE 2: BIGGER IS BETTER
Beware of any CMS, open source or not, that cites its huge following as reason to use their system. Don’t be taken in by the promises of a huge, helpful user community, and all the beautiful extensions or plugins the systems already have to offer. It’s a TRAP!
Just because many people are using a CMS, does not make it good. Take for example the huge amount of people who insist on running Linux. I still have no idea why people wish to inflict that kind of pain on themselves. Similarly, picking a CMS based on a following is an extremely bad idea.
Another reason why people will choose these types of CMS’s is because they see that there is a huge community of developers or amount of money behind a certain web application. To this I turn to a favorite quote of mine:
“I wish developing great products was as easy as writing a check. If that was the case, Microsoft would have great products.”
If you haven’t guessed, that’s a quote from Steve Jobs explaining why it’s better not to be the behemoth. What really matters is the people behind the product and that they are the right people for the job. Not how many people you have working for you.
When it comes the open source CMS’s, often we find that there is nobody tracking development or finding the right people to make what others need. The averagecommunity member becomes the main source of functionality and the result is a huge jumble of average extensions and functionality with a few nuggets buried so deep you’ll never find them. So I repeat my advice to beware of the behemoths.
MISTAKE 3: GOING WITH THE LITTLE GUY
Again, this is the same as #2, where in an attempt to recover from an unfortunate run in with a behemoth you pick an overly simplistic CMS. Always make sure to check that the CMS you are looking into does include extensions with the functionality you will need. Many times you may stumble upon a promising CMS, but do not invest in it until you have found that it offers what you need. Unfortunately some of the best CMS’s out there are still developing.
MISTAKE 4: NOT DOING RESEARCH
Always, always do research before settling on a CMS. Check sites they give as examples. Email the administrators of those sites and discuss the pros and cons of the CMS. Talk to developers and keep an open mind.
There does come a point however when you must invest some time in testing out the system and attempting to build a site. Do so for yourself before ever promising to use the system for a customer. Sometimes you may believe you have found an extension or module that will work and upon testing will discover it is seriously flawed. Other times you may discover that the only way to get a module that functions properly is to purchase one.
MISTAKE 5: ALLOWING AN IT GUY TO PICK THE CMS
Never, ever, ever allow an IT guy to choose your Content Management System. It is a rare breed that understands both code and a friendly user interface. Whether you are a big company or small group of freelancers, it is imperative that whoever the Mac guy is among you, sign off on anything that the IT guy presents. It may be a headache, but making sure that the CMS you use has a good user interface is essential and will save you a lot of pain in the long run.
WHAT TO LOOK FOR IN A CMS
There are many things to look for in a content management system but here are a few of the more important ones:
- Quick and easy installation
- Simple administration interface
- Quick and easy extension of CMS for extra functionality
- Simple template manipulation
- Helpful user community