Content Management Systems

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When it comes to professional looking websites, content management systems are the gold standard in today's marketplace.  Not all content management systems are created equal.  Our team has an in-depth knowledge of the various systems, and can also create custom website and web app solutions when needed.  Our full-service agency's knowledge and experience ensures that you get the right website and features to stand out above your competition.

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What are Content Management Systems?

Content Management Systems (CMSs) are websites that provide multiple users with the ability to easily manage (create, edit, archive, publish, and distribute) website content or data. Many of today's most popular websites run off of a CMS, due largely to their ease of use, modular design, and valuable management tools. Designers, programmers, and clients alike can easily add articles and content to a site if it uses a CMS system.

Without a CMS, in most cases, a web programmer would have to manually connect to a server and change the site's code in order to edit the content. With a CMS, responsibility for the site's content can be spread out as needed. Similarly, the modular design of a CMS allows media, widgets, or entire pages (or even an entire website design) to be quickly removed or changed. Best of all, making those changes can be made live immediately, as removing media, widgets, or pages generally does not break the site.

The most popular open source content management systems available today are listed below along with their key features, benefits, downfalls, and our experts’ verdicts:


Wordpress

Simple, Quick, Effective.

  • Wordpress is the world's most popular blogging and content management system.
  • Wordpress mobile apps allow you to update your site or blog from anywhere.
  • There are a large number of plugins available to extend, alter, or integrate WordPress.
  • A majority of the newest themes are also equipped with mobile web and responsive versions.
  • Managing your pages, media, and comments is simple with the built-in, user-friendly Dashboard.
  • Read more about how we create WordPress websites here.
“Wordpress is the world's most popular blogging system and content management system.”
Screenshot of Wordpress’s back-end dashboard. Click to enlarge.

The Good

WordPress is very search-engine friendly right out-of-the box, while other CMSs (like Joomla) contain certain setting configurations that are required to maximize search engine effectiveness. WordPress is also the easiest CMS to learn.

The Bad

Due to its popularity, WordPress is the prime target for hackers and malicious bots. If your installation of WordPress is kept up-to-date, this isn’t much of a problem. However, the number and frequency of updates can grow exponentially with the number of plugins installed. For this reason, we recommend avoiding unnecessary plugins. 

The Verdict

WordPress is the ideal choice for a blogger or business that needs to edit their own website, but doesn't want a system with too many options. We recommend WordPress for most of our clients due to its extendibility and maturity. However, larger, more complex websites may want to consider other options.

 

Joomla

Flexible, Extendable, Powerful.

  • There is a huge pool of community resources available to provide support, with over 200,000 members.
  • Joomla is free open source software.
  • Developer-focused.
“Joomla has a healthy balance of technical flexibility and ease-of-use.”
Screenshot of Joomla’s content editor. Click to enlarge.

The Good

Much like WordPress, Joomla offers a massive number of plugins (known as “Modules” or “Components”), which can dramatically improve the functionality of your website. 

The Bad

Joomla isn't quite as simple for users to edit content (like WordPress) and it has some quirks which can add extra time and management to the project. It’s also missing some out-of-the-box features that WordPress has, such as quick post previews.

The Verdict

While Joomla was previously our go-to CMS due to its flexibility and wealth of plugins, WordPress has sped past Joomla in every respect. It’s simply not worth investing your time and money into in 2016.

 

Drupal

Enterprise-Level Content Management.

  • Drupal is also free and backed by a massive community (like Joomla).
  • Ability to manage multiple websites and templates from one place.
  • Almost all plugins are completely free.
  • The same templates, plugins, and databases can be shared across multiple sites.
  • Has the greatest capabilities for advanced and complex sites without the need for much custom coding.
  • The most developer-friendly of the CMSs.
“Drupal has the greatest capability for advanced and complex sites...”
Screenshot of Drupal’s content editor. Click to enlarge.

The Good

Drupal has out-of-the-box capabilities for massive, complex, and/or multi-site projects. Drupal enables us to effectively manage your site on a level above most other content management systems. Additionally, the way Drupal incorporates plugins allows the plugins to closely work together in ways that most CMSs cannot.

The Bad

Drupal's ability to manage complex sites comes at a cost: it is also quite complex. The default administrator UI can be overwhelming for the unfamiliar, so we advise letting us create a streamlined UI to avoid unnecessary confusion or mistakes by your staff.

The Verdict

Drupal is an excellent choice for those companies interested in an enterprise-level site with complex features. If you’re looking for a lot of functionality at a lower cost, Drupal can be your best friend.

 

Magento

Ecommerce with Expandability.

  • Magento is both a CMS and ecommerce platform.
  • It offers a more powerful ecommerce platform than using a standard CMS with a shopping cart plugin.
  • Small business and enterprise level hosting are available, both include technical support.
  • Integration of multiple user types, allowing for discount pricing per group.
  • Offers Payment Gateway integration, including PayPal.
  • Product listings can be imported as .csv files.
  • Multiple shipping rates are avaialble based on shipping tables of carriers or flat rates.
  • Support for variations of products, selected from drop-down menus.
“Magento: a more powerful eCommerce platform than using a standard CMS with a shopping cart plugin.”
Screenshot of Magento's back-end dashboard. Click to enlarge.

The Good

Magento is an excellent ecommerce platform, but also includes typical CMS features that allow for a full-fledged site. This content management system puts your site’s sales first, which is a big step above a CMS with an ecommerce plugin.

The Bad

If your site isn't going to be ecommerce-focused, or you’re already using a CMS and can easily add an ecommerce plugin, setting up a Magento-based site probably isn't worth the time. Also, setting up customizable products can be time consuming and the extensions and first-party support can be expensive.

The Verdict

Magento is the best out-of-the-box ecommerce platform you'll get for free. If your ecommerce site is starting from scratch, go for it.

 

Read more about...

Wordpress | Joomla | Drupal | Magento

All Content Management Systems and their logos are property of their respective owners.

Why are CMS Platforms so Vulnerable?

People believe that since WordPress, Drupal, Joomla, and other publishing platforms are such popular CMSs, that it makes them the safest options from hackers and malicious bots. This, however, is 100% false. Open source CMSs may be the best options to manage your website, but they can have a lot of security flaws if not deployed and managed correctly.

What Makes Content Management Systems Such a Popular Target for Hackers?

Open source CMSs don’t cost anything, making them the most widely used CMSs. Hackers install a CMS website on their own servers and try to diagnose vulnerabilities within the system. Once a vulnerability is identified, hackers can use it as a virtual gold mine. They can create a process to make an automated system to launch mass-scale attacks on a targeted CMS.

Another issue is the administrator panels for CMSs, which are—by default—left in plain sight. Webmasters that don’t hide their administrator panel are a more vulnerable target than those who do. Additionally, a lot of webmasters use weak passwords which can be bruteforced by hackers to gain access to the administrator panel.

Why Does Green Group Studio Recommend an Open Source CMS?

Although content management systems can be vulnerable because of their flaws, there are also a few benefits when it comes to using CMSs:

  • CMSs are exceptionally customizable, allowing web developers to meet any of their clients’ unique needs when creating their website.
  • They have user-friendly backend systems that allow anyone who isn’t experienced with programming to edit their website and create custom content.
  • CMSs may come standard with many vulnerabilities, but since they’re open source, Green Group Studio can fix these issues with our Cybersecurity Services.
  • To learn more about giving your website the gift of a user-friendly, secure content management system, or to find out whether your website needs are better off being met by a custom or open source content management system, call the experts at Green Group Studio today!

         



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