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Customizing Content Management Systems

Websites can never be considered complete. Regular content updates are necessary if you hope to profit from your website. It becomes difficult to keep going back to your designer to get content updates on your website and HTML is definitely not your cup of tea, then you should consider using a Content Management System, known as CMS in the digital world.


There are two options available to you when you look for a Content Management System. One is that you have your web designer create a Content Management System for you. The other option is for you pick up a ready-to-use content management system and make some changes to customize it to your requirements.


Most small to medium sized businesses choose to use a ready-to-use Content Management System so that they can keep the cost of development within limits and be ready to use the software within a couple of days.


Most ready-to-use content management systems are simple to implement and require only a few changes to make it match your website. Customization of an existing Content Management System can be done by your web designer. Once this is done, all it takes to make changes on your website is access the system. Making changes become as easy as editing a simple Word document. Listed below are some of web design elements which need customization when using a ready made Content Management System.


Look and Feel of all the pages which are delivered by the Content Management System. One of the first things which needs to be customized in the look and feel of the content management system driven pages.This can be done by adding a customized header and footer. One of the disadvantages of ready-to-use content management systems are that they do not allow for unique graphical display. Most of them are restricted to certain layouts and color schemes. You need to conform to that.


Link structure or navigation structure. The link structure needs to be customized as per your website, and, once this is done, you can just choose the page for which you would like to make changes, and do it with the Content Management System. The navigation structure should also allow you to add pages under a specific link as well as adding a new link to the website.

Administration set up for easy management of the Content Management System is required at this stage, so that you can assign permissions to different groups of people to manage the website. You can also choose the type of editor (HTML or plain text) which you would like to use when creating the content and updating your website.


Most people prefer HTML editors. because they are very simple to use and are also known as WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) editors. Before customizing a Content Management System, you need to review the various modules that are available with the provider, and then you choose the ones which are most relevant to you.


Some Content Management Systems may also provide additional modules such as a shopping cart system, a newsletter management system, user tracking system, advertisement tracking system, and others.


Content Management Systems are sure to enhance the value of your content as delivered on your website, and, if you are tired of a website which is as old as the hills, it is time you upgraded yourself and got a CMS for your website


Popular Content Management Systems for your website

Choosing an off-the-shelf Content Management System requires a close evaluation of the ones which are available today. There are two choices here as well: you can buy one which is well-known for its quality of service, or you can use one of the free CMS’s. The problem with free or open source Content Management Systems is that you cannot be sure about the trouble-shooting aspect of the work; you can also never be sure about the longevity of the company.


Some of the popular Content Management Systems are reviewed below. Their technology usage and general information about them are outlined as well.

  1. Drupal: Drupal is probably one of the most advanced Content Management Systems available online. It is an open source product and is free to those who download it. Since there are thousands of people who contribute to the development of Drupal, it is quite updated and has some of the best community tools and marketing tools which can be found in a content management system. Thanks to its popularity, you will have no trouble locating a web designer who is familiar with this system. This is one CMS product for which you can be rest assured about support as it has a large online support network.
  2. MamboServer: Mambo is an open source software which is very popular. It is free and extremely easy to set up. It is a scalable system and can accommodate simple websites as well as large corporate websites. One of the key selling points of the Mambo Content Management Systems is that it is extremely simple to install and use. Some of the features which are available in Mambo are advertisement management, media management, content syndication, easy to use administration system and a multi-lingual interface.
  3. Open CMS: You might start thinking that the world is full of open source content management systems. OpenCMS is yet another open source Content Management Systems which is available free of cost. However, one of the key technological differences between OpenCMS and other Content Management Systems of their genre is that this system uses Java and XML technology. This makes its platform independent. OpenCMS developers believe that the system can support a wide range of websites and is also suitable for large corporate applications.
  4. Joomla!: One does wonder about the inspiration behind the various names of the Content Management System. Joomla! is one such application. Joomla is a high-powered Content Management System that is available free of cost. It iis becoming quite popular with the development community. The product is available on the open source platform and is very sturdy. Joomla! Is actually a continuation of the Mambo CMS system. The team originally designed Mambo before resigning from there en masse.
  5. Typo3: Typo 3 focuses on providing an open source content management system which is designed for corporate intranet and enterprise level applications. It is one of the most professional open source content management. Typo 3 addresses soft issues such as branding, version contro,l and even maintaining templates within an application. Typo3 is currently available free of cost, but it will not be long before such advanced content management system companies are purchased by a large software company. You only need to pay for the customization and you can be assured that Typo3 will help deliver your website content effectively.

For every free open source content management system, there is a content management system which is available on a paid basis. The choice of the right CMS should be governed by your requirements and your budget.

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