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Content Management Systems are the main cause of the saturated web design market and the many, ahem, headache-inducing websites around today.
If you have ever heard the term Content Management System, or CMS, but have no clue what on earth it means or how it relates to you and your website, this post is for you. If you do know what a CMS is but aren't sure whether it is a blessing or a curse, read on!
If you're a web designer who disagrees with my opening statement, you should probably close this tab now before the ninja-like Red Giant reaches out and slaps you.
Ever heard of Wordpress? Joomla? Drupal? Those are all examples of Content Management Systems. For the benefit of our technologically challenged readers I am going to use small words to explain this.
A CMS is basically internet-based software which is supposed to help web designers create websites without doing any (or limited) actual coding. Websites created using a CMS are styled using pre-designed templates which can be found all over the internet. Most of the code is automatically generated by the CMS and all the lazy "web designer" has to do is click on a few pretty buttons, copy and paste some content into the software and voila! A new website!
Will that website look very good?
Will Google love the website to bits and skyrocket it to the first page?
Will your website look the same as 50 other websites on the Internet?
Bad web designers designing bad websites.
Content Management Systems have created a crisis. Because anybody, and I mean anybody, can create a website using a CMS, we now have a situation where every dog and his owner are starting "web design" businesses. Of course, they have figured out that this web design thing isn't so difficult after all and they can easily make money being a professional web designer.
The result? More "web designers" doing the rounds than wrong calls by Bryce Lawrence. More importantly, however, there are more disgruntled customers than South Africans who'd like to ring Bryce's neck.
Truth be told, Content Management Systems are actually extremely useful tools for web designers. When used in conjunction with solid web development good practice, a CMS can assist in creating powerful websites in a fraction of the time. In fact, we design almost all of our websites using some form of CMS. Heck, even the Red Giant Design website is built in Joomla!
The fantasy that a decent website can be created with no coding knowledge is exactly that - a fantasy. If you want to design a great website in a CMS, a lot of tweaking has to be done behind the scenes to make sure everything does what it should do.
A CMS shouldn't be used to develop websites. A Content Management System should be used to manage content. Go figure.
Do not be fooled by any fancy talk of Content Management Systems. If your web designer intends to use a CMS, make sure that he is going to design a custom template for your website (not find one the Internet) and ask him why he feels a CMS is necessary for your website.
More importantly, check out his portfolio! Do not hire a web designer if you haven't seen quality examples of his work before.
If you need a quality website designed and developed properly by people who aren't just looking to make a quick buck, please contact us and we will gladly help you.
If you have any questions about Content Management Systems or anything related, please comment below and I'd be happy to provide answers to the best of my ability.