When it comes to having a new website built for your business, there’s only one option for the platform on which it should sit.
Without question, you’ll need a content managed website - known more commonly as a ‘CMS’.
But how do you find the right one for your business? And, more importantly, how can you be sure to pick a CMS that will grow with your organisation and which won’t need replacing in a year’s time?
Thankfully, all it takes is this simple, 5-step process:
Step 1: Look local
Sure, you’ll find a wealth of digital marketing firms across the UK with funky names, tantalising pricing and a multitude of fantastic customer testimonials, but when it comes to your website, it still pays to look local.
Remote support for such websites is certainly no bad thing, but if you want to meet the people who will be designing your CMS-based website, it’s made all the more easier if they’re in the same county as you.
Equally, if training is required, or if you’d like regular meetings as part of the service, you’ll end up paying far less for a local company (plus you’ll be supporting the local economy!).
Step 2: Explore the ease-of-use
Ask to see the CMS in action. This will help you get a feel for how easy it is to use, and just how quickly you’ll be able to pick it up.
A great content managed website will let you update pages, add new pages and perform basic page layout tweaks without needing to be a designer or web developer, and it should be as easy as using Microsoft Word.
Step 3: Ask about security
Now the GDPR is in full swing, and with cybercrime regularly hitting the headlines, the security aspect of any CMS is more important than ever.
The CMS you choose should be built with a security first mindset, and the company providing it for you should be equally as up-to-speed with all things GDPR.
If you’re met with blank expressions or waffly replies about security (both in terms of the CMS itself and the hosting), keep looking.
Step 4: Seek examples
A great CMS is nothing if the websites it produces look terrible or perform poorly from a user’s perspective.
Ask to see it in action from a web visitor’s point of view. Check mobile compatibility and ensure you’re happy with the flexibility of the design across a number of sites before saying “yes”.
Step 5: Look beyond the CMS - what else is on offer?
The CMS is only the start. We’re assuming in this post that you’re also employing the services of a digital marketing company to create the website for you, therefore it’s definitely worth investigating what else they can do for you.
Once the site has been built and launched, can they offer content marketing, social media management and on-going marketing support?
Your CMS, no matter how good it is, can quickly fall into disrepair or become entirely outdated from a marketing perspective if it doesn’t come with great marketing aftercare from the provider.
Finding the right CMS isn’t easy, but with systems like SilverStripe now affordable and approachable for businesses of all sizes, anyone can use our 5-step process above to supercharge their web presence.