Web site content management guide  

How To Choose A Cms That Doesn't Suck
By CMS Critic
We are constantly exposed to content management systems day to day and have a huge number of them (and itís growing too!) in our CMS list.

We have noticed more and more that people are having a hard time deciding how to choose the right CMS for the job.

Itís not an easy task for some people, and for that reason weíve created this article with the hope that it can free some of you from feeling overwhelmed.

When you first realize you need/want a CMS, there is the fear that the CMS you select will:

1. Suck your time and money into a spinning vortex.
2. Suck your page rank down the tube due to poor optimization.
3. Just plain suck.

How do you avoid this?

Start by Following these DO and Do NOT tips:

The DO NOT List:

1. Do NOT pick your CMS based on the fact that you found a pretty theme for it. Themes can be created quickly and easily.. and quite frankly, choosing based on this factor alone is bound to give you a headache.
2. Do NOT just buy something without trying it first. You wouldnít do it with a car (we hope) so donít do it with your content management system either. We can pretty much guarantee that if you approach a vendor and tell them you are curious and interested but want to demo first, they will make it happen or risk losing your business.
3. Do NOT throw tons of money (cause we all have tons of money right?) at a developer and have them make something custom just for you. Itís not worth the investment.. there are plenty of well supported systems out there and itís much better to have others who know the product as support options rather than just one person.
4. Do NOT assume that because the CMS costs money, it must be better than itís Open Source alternatives. While this MAY be the case in SOME instances.. it is most certainly not always the case. There are a large number of Open Source CMS products on the market that are much better than some of the commercial offerings.. and vice versa.
5. Do NOT go to the Drupal forums and ask them if WordPress or Drupal is the best.. you will get a biased answer. This is about as intelligent as walking into a Ford dealership and asking them if they think Ford

is better than Chevrolet.

The DO List:

1. DO take your time and explore your options. There are TONS of resources out there (this is the internet for peteís sake!) that can help you in your search. We think This Site is the best. (like how we slid that in there?). If you have a hard time finding help, then ask and weíll direct you.
2. DO try the product first. We donít recommend demos as they are already installed. Itís best to download the package, find a cheap host somewhere and try to install it and see what happens. If you get lost somewhere and need help.. hit the forums for the applicable package. You can start your hunt for the perfect product by reviewing this cms list or reading some reviews.
3. DO ask other webmasters of sites that you like. Some may or may not be willing to tell you what (if any) CMS they are using but it never hurts to ask. Frequest webmaster forums or un-jaded sites such as ours!
4. DO remember to fully research the product you are considering.. explore some themes, plugins and see how the community treats questions from new users. This will give you a good feel for the product.

So now you know what we think you should do and shouldnít do. Letís cover some additional tips.

1. Make sure that you check to ensure that whichever platform you are evaluating (PHP, .NET, JAVA) your hosting provider, if applicable, supports it.
2. Check the Showcase pages (if any) for the product you are considering.
CMS list at CMSCritic.com


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