What to look for in your CMS for 2015

Choosing a content management system is one of the most important aspects of the web design and development process. You will need to verify the program’s server database to ascertain that it is compatible with the web hosting tools and programming expertise you have. For instance, understanding how to use bluehost and wordPress can significantly streamline this process, ensuring that your chosen CMS and hosting provider work well together. The server language is also important, since it is likely that you will perform some back-end programming in the process of customization to suit your specific needs.

The following are a few other important points to consider before making your final CMS selection to ensure you get the best service in 2015.

Wordpress CMS

1. Security

Security is the most important aspect to consider in a CMS, especially when you need to share content and sensitive information. Most of the CMS solutions in 2015 have comprehensive security measures in place for users as well as developers. Extended privileges include options for setting access levels and permissions according to user roles and expertise levels.

It is helpful to use CMSs that also have captcha functionality to sift humans from robots as well as a sandbox where your team of developers can create, test and debug possible functions and links within the website before changing anything in the live site.

2. Add-ons for business and commerce

A CMS software suite is the key you need to transform your small functional business site into a powerful eCommerce platform with all the tools needed to succeed e.g. POS systems and shopping carts. You might also like to include a custom help desk, inventory management and live chat functions.

In order to move to the next level, choose CMSs with the best reviews regarding eCommerce functionality. These should have the ability to track affiliate income e.g. sales of your products by third party vendors and clicks on ads on your site. Have a development team that can fully customize every feature, layout and function so that the corporate image reverberates throughout the site.

A large active online community would also be helpful since you can get ideas on other add-ons that you might need and have a support forum when you run into any walls. As you grow, you will need additional tools e.g. project tracking, contact management, file distribution and document management. Choose CMS that has the capacity to handle exponential growth and the needs that go with it.

Blogging using WordPress CMS
photo credit: Robb Sutton / Flickr

3. Ease of use

This may not seem so important where you know the programming language of the CMS and can comfortably handle the backend customization. However, you should know there is a difference in the ease of use for standard web-building tools, which you should consider when choosing the CMS for your site. If you are new to web design, you may need a step-by-step guide; hence you will want a CMS with style and site-setup wizards.

Other functions that are helpful to have include undo, spell-checking as well as drag and drop features, which make it easier to upload a professional-looking website in a short time.

Moreover, of course, user support and customer service is important. Find out what solutions you have open: how you can connect with support personnel, access to online developer communities, discussion forums, blogs and online tutorials among many other aspects. You should be able to find help easily when you need it.