A good content management system (CMS) is critical to the success of many modern organizations. And while your small company may not need all the content production bells and whistles that a multimillion-dollar enterprise requires, you still need a reliable CMS to build a successful digital experience for your customers as well as your in-house team. If you’re shopping for a CMS for your small company, keep an eye out for these key features.
An intuitive editing and publishing interface
If a content management system (CMS) is the heart of your digital experience platform, an overly complicated user interface can clog your company’s arteries. First and foremost, your CMS should be easy to use. Look for a CMS with rich-text editing, which enables you to copy and paste content from Word or Google Docs, format the text and track any changes. You should also be able to drag and drop photos and videos into your content, preview pages before publishing and update previously published content.
Tools for collaboration
The best CMSs facilitate collaboration among your team. Look for a CMS that allows contributors to create, edit, optimize and visualize pieces of content (assets) from the same view. Viewing features show who is looking at an asset in the CMS, while locking features allow simultaneous editing of a single asset. You should also be able to start a conversation right in your CMS and receive notifications (via email, Slack, etc.) on the discussion. These types of tools can streamline communication and help your small team stay nimble and productive.
Tools for SEO
Search engine optimization (SEO) tools are essential for boosting your brand’s visibility, and a good CMS can do the heavy lifting for you. Look for a CMS that adds SEO attributes like title, description, keywords and metatags to every asset and page. A good CMS can also create SEO-friendly URLs automatically based on the page’s headline. The best CMSs can even assist you with keyword selection, providing insight into search-traffic volume so your site can rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs).
Social media integration
No matter the size of your business, you can leverage the enormous power of social media to connect with your customers. With a modern CMS, your website and social media platforms can work together to provide a seamless user experience and boost engagement with your brand. You can configure social accounts and schedule content directly from your CMS, and your CMS can optimize your content for various social channels. Make sure your CMS allows you to easily add buttons throughout your site so users can bookmark, email, print and share your content on social.
A CMS that enables your team to create robust workflows—including internal approval processes and well-defined user roles—can help guard against unwanted changes to your website. Look for a CMS that allows you to easily view recent publishing activity as well as any revisions, so you’ll know who published what and when. You may also be able to apply two-factor authentication for all access points to your CMS, providing an additional layer of security to ensure your content and data are protected.
Accessible customer support
If you’re running a small business, you likely don’t have time to waste in a phone tree when you need assistance. You may also need more than a FAQ section, tutorial videos and community forums for guidance. When shopping for a CMS, look for one that offers access to a live support team to help you learn the software, troubleshoot any issues and solve unique business challenges as they arise. A CMS that’s backed by a team offering best-in-class support can help keep your business moving forward.
Tools for analytics
The best way to gauge the success of your digital content is to analyze it. A good CMS offers built-in analytics (or analytics integrations), allowing you to view site- and asset-level traffic data right on the platform. With these types of tools, you can see everything from pageviews of a particular blog post to overall trends over time. By using a CMS to track content creation and measure its performance, you can shape an effective content strategy for your small business.
A good CMS can help you manage your website with ease so you can grow your business. Just make sure the CMS you choose has the features your small company needs to succeed.
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