How many times have you come across a Term, a Tech Abbreviation or some sort of Jargon; today is Website CMS (Content Management System)? Maybe it is out of habit or wanting to go all into an ego drive to look “smart”. It also serves as a good checkpoint once in a while to re-visit some of these and maybe give a long form explanation.
So today I want to bring your attention to CMS or Content Management System. In a quick summary it is the control panel to your website where you manage your media content (pictures, videos and audio) as well as your written or text content. If you have an online store this is usually where you will add in products and also manage orders.
There a many CMS systems out there that are Open Source meaning they are FREE to get and use, but may have some functional limitations. Among the many CMS types I have a preference for 2 namely WordPress and Magento. There are others but these 2 are my choices for corporate to ecommerce stores.
Abbreviate as WP. This is very popular and the easiest to adopt, use and manage for all. This is a platform originally built for blogging so the focus was and is the user experience. Users will find that this is a friendly platform. Yet with anything there are downsides and for WordPress it is plugins. Plugins are small programs you either get for FREE and install it to WordPress or purchased. It is common to find WordPress sites with 15 to 20 plugins and this is the problem or the cause of it. Due to so many plugins if you update any each can potentially cause minor errors which can bring the whole site down. So usually the approach is to prevent plugins from self updating.
WordPress – WooCommerce
It is the same, or rather they are more or less “related”. Just that WooCommerce is far more popular and used. But do note that like WordPress there are some limitations in the functions.
Sometimes abbreviated as MAGE. This is good for large variety of products. But is not the easiest to work with and maintain. Yet its huge set of pre-built-in features is like a dream come true, but can be overwhelming. With anything you will need to learn over time. Magento was built as an eCommerce platform and therefore all the functions are very online retail based right from the Dashboard you first load.
Corporate/Simple Website vs eCommerce
I am not too sure why there is always some sort of confusion here, but as long as no purchasing with payment is done online the site is just a website. So you really need to have an understanding of the goal of the site. Are you using it to brand or just inform or is it to become a sales channel.
- Corporate site: WordPress
- Easy to learn and manage;
- Drag and drop content;
- Little to no technical ability required.
- Can be hacked or brought down if not secured well
- Additional functions and features need to be bought
- eCommerce Site (1 – 2000 products): WordPress / WooCommerce
- Easy to add and manage products
- Limited functions
- More features need to be purchased (Cross Sell, Up Sell, etc)
- eCommerce Site (1 – 15,000 products): Magento
- Optimised for large inventories
- Many in-built features. (Promotions, up-sell, cross-sell, related products, etc)
- Secure and harder to hack or break
- Requires a mid to high technical knowledge
- Need HTML and CSS knowledge
- Inventory management is simple, need to upgrade
About WIX, Shopify and the rest..
These too should be examined and looked into but do note that these are paid serviced platforms. Customisations are possible but at a cost, features are available and also at a cost. And also there are things like domain, hosting and security to be addressed as well.
You are only good at a few things and the rest you are and will unlikely be great at. So it is either you get the capability from someone else or else you outsource it out. Many will want to try to do the website development themselves but do note what you will invest in is your time.
Let me know if this post has been helpful by making a comment below.