Narrowing down your CMS choices

As a business owner, you want to make sure your website is responsive, user-friendly, and packed with features that will delight your customers. But before you can choose the perfect content management system (CMS) for your website, you need to understand what a CMS actually is and what it can do for you

A content management system is a platform that allows you to create, edit, and publish digital content. A good CMS will make it easy for you to manage your website without any prior coding knowledge. It will also give you the ability to scale your website as your business grows

There are dozens of different CMSs on the market, so how do you know which one is right for you? Start by evaluating your needs and then compare those needs to the features of the most popular CMSs. Once you’ve narrowed down your options, you can begin testing out the various platforms to see which one feels like the best fit

What are your needs?

The first step in choosing a CMS is to understand what kinds of features you need for your website. If you’re planning on selling products or services online, then you’ll need a CMS that offers e-commerce functionality. You’ll also need to consider whether or not you need a mobile-friendly website—most people browse the internet on their phones these days, so it’s important to cater to that market. Other important features include lead capture forms, live chat support, and integration with third-party applications like email marketing platforms
When evaluating different CMSs, be sure to keep your specific needs in mind. The last thing you want is to invest time and money into building a website on a platform that doesn’t have the features you require

Compare apples to apples

There are two types of content management systems: open source and proprietary. Open source platforms like WordPress and Drupal are free to download and use, but they require some technical knowledge in order to set up and customize. Proprietary platforms like Squarespace and Wix are easier to use because they come with pre-built templates and drag-and-drop editors—but they come at a price tag ranging from $10-$50 per month. When comparing different CMSs, be sure to evaluate both open source and proprietary options in order to find the best fit for your needs

Test it out for yourself

Once you’ve narrowed down your choices, it’s time for the fun part: testing out the various platforms! The best way to get a feel for how easy (or difficult) a particular CMS is to use is by trying it out yourself. Most open-source CMSs offer demo sites that allow you to explore all of the different features without having to set up an account or enter any credit card information. For proprietary platforms, many companies offer free trials lasting anywhere from 7-14 days. By taking advantage of these demos and trials, you can get a better sense of which platform is right for you before committing to anything long term

When choosing a content management system for your business website, there are many factors to consider—but don’t let that overwhelm you! Start by evaluating your specific needs and then compare those needs against the features offered by popular open source and proprietary CMSs. Once you’ve narrowed down your options, test out each platform using demo sites or free trials until you find the perfect fit for your business.