Why do Websites need a Content Management System (CMS)?
I always ask clients to consider the following question… What does it take to get someone to return to your Website after they have seen it once or twice? The answer is fresh content! Not only do site visitors respond favorably to the fact that your site is more than a static brochure. Perhaps what may even be more important, search engines respond to changing content as well.
The capacity that CMS platforms have to broadcast feeds of fresh content to other locations is vital. With 22% of new domain Websites on the Internet now using WordPress as a CMS, it’s time to make the shift from passive HTML and Flash, to a system that allows you to be in the driver’s seat while the CMS works in the background to generate Really Simple Syndication (RSS).
A recent Forrester report states that nearly a quarter of American adults who use the Internet are now described as active ‘creators.’ They “write blogs, upload original audio or video, or post stories online.”
In September, 2009 I shifted my entire DesignWise theory to reflect this change… and began using WordPress as a content management system (CMS) for future Website design – one that would empower my clients and enable them to become creators. The following is a work-in-progress, much like WordPress itself. My intent is to provide readers and more specifically, my DesignWise clients with a handy set of reference pages that will make it easy to go from ‘know-nothing-beginner’ to experienced ‘creator’ in a graceful, step-by-step manner.
We host and build Websites using WordPress as a CMS, customized in so many different ways to make unique and personalized feature-rich, powerful, site designs. Then we coach you in taking over content management at whatever level you choose. Yes, you can get a free blog account at WordPress.com but, these are quite limited in freedom and flexibility.
Take a look inside a password-protected WordPress dashboard in this helpful video tutorial:
I like visual tools, so you will find a growing collection embedded videos like the one above, as well as a collection of links to informative coaching blogs and other WordPress resources. I am assembling an ever-changing set of my favorite WordPress Plugins. And I am adding and expanding this resource in a set of “child pages.”
It’s important to start by understanding why WordPress is a superior content management system and this relates to the fact that it is created, organized and assembled from component parts that are all stored in a database. This means that it is capable of being instantly reformatted for delivery to different types of devices that are calling for the content. Have you looked at your current Website on a smartphone? Lots of other people are doing so and those numbers will continue to increase.
WordPress is Free and open source software, built by a distributed community of mostly volunteer developers from around the world. WordPress comes with some awesome, worldview-changing rights courtesy of its license, the GPL.
You have the freedom to run the program, for any purpose.
You have access to the source code, the freedom to study how the program works, and the freedom to change it to make it do what you wish.
You have the freedom to redistribute copies of the original program so you can help your neighbor.
You have the freedom to distribute copies of your modified versions to others. By doing this you can give the whole community a chance to benefit from your changes.
WordPress grows when people like you tell their friends about it, and the thousands of businesses and services that are built on and around WordPress share that fact with their users. We’re flattered every time someone spreads the good word, just make sure to check out our trademark guidelines first.
Every plugin and theme in WordPress.org’s directory is 100% GPL or a similarly free and compatible license, so you can feel safe finding plugins and themes there. If you get a plugin or theme from another source, make sure to ask them if it’s GPL first. If they don’t respect the WordPress license, we don’t recommend them.
Don’t you wish all software came with these freedoms? So do we! For more information, check out the Free Software Foundation.