Are you struggling with your content management system? It’s time to evaluate whether your CMS is truly working for your business.
If you’re looking to determine if your CMS is working for your business, you’re going to need a site which is backed by a content management system that makes it easy for you to rapidly publish content. As you achieve success online and manage to boost your site visitation, the business and technical requirements that you may need are likely to change. It’s wise to evaluate if your CMS is capable of delivering today and in the future.
In this article, I’ll provide you with some helpful ways for determining whether your CMS is working for you, how you can fix things if you’ve outgrown, and the options you have if you’re required to start with a new CMS.
Let’s start by asking a few questions.
Is your site speed up to scratch?
Over time when you’ve had the same site up for a while your pages can begin to lag. One of the best ways to evaluate whether your page speed is up to scratch is by using Google’s Page Speed Insights tool, or if you’re looking for more visual breakdown of your site speed, try “think with Google”.
Both these tools will help you to assess if your site is no longer performing at a level which is suited to modern user needs. Not only this, but you’ll be able to improve the speed of your pages providing a better user experience and higher search engine rankings by following the tips provided.
If you’re a user of a CMS such as WordPress, you’ll be able to adjust these items quite easily, or at least diagnose whether you would be better off moving to an enterprise CMS such as Squiz Matrix which will provide you with enhanced control over your content, eliminates the use of bulky plugins, and is designed to alleviate a number of the site speed issues website owners commonly see.
Do you need distributed workflow capability?
If you’re publishing content on a daily basis and started out using WordPress, you may be looking to graduate to an enterprise content management system designed to better support multiple authors, document approval and enhanced publishing capability. If this sounds like you, the good news is there are a number of options out there worth looking into.
CMS come in all shapes and sizes, budgets and capabilities, so if you’re struggling to achieve a given function, chances are there’s a great solution out there for you.
Looking into distributed workflow is often one of the first indicators that you’re ready to graduate from an entry-level CMS. This feature is commonly requested by medium to enterprise size customers who want increased control of their document publishing procedures, and is an excellent reason to consider upgrading your CMS.
Are you generating search engine traffic?
Organic search traffic translates into business more often than not, therefore your site should be optimised for Google. There are a number of things you can do within your CMS to ensure this is happening.
- Ensuring your URL structure is descriptive (i.e. not http://www.example.com/2017-05-01/abc74232/)
- Checking that each page on your site has a unique title and meta description tag
- That there’s no duplicate content on your site (a pet hate of Google), and
- Your images are named appropriately and have ALT text to help search engines understand what they are
The easiest way to determine if your site is generating search engine traffic is by using Google Analytics to see where your visitors are coming from. You can do this from the Acquisition menu within the Analytics Dashboard. This section of Analytics is a great place to begin understanding the effectiveness of your CMS solution as you’ll be able to tell if your website is actually driving business or just simply sitting online gathering dust.
Do you find it easy to use your CMS?
If your CMS is painfully difficult to use or has simply been setup in a way which is hard to work with, I recommend asking other users of the same CMS to see if they’re having similar problems.
If so, it may be that this CMS isn’t for you (or anyone), or you may need to change the way your CMS has been setup to make life a little easier for you and your team.
Another option if you’re in this situation is to seek help from a colleague, someone in your IT department, or reach out to a digital agency who will be able to help you diagnose why your CMS is working against you, not for you.
Is the cost of your CMS outweighing its return?
At the end of the day having a content management system powering your website is important, but it’s more important that it’s bringing in business. Yes, everyone needs a website these days, but if your CMS solution is not working for you, it may be time to seek external consulting to assess why?
The lack of success surrounding your website performance may be a result of a number of things, or it could be as simple as you’re just not using your CMS as it was intended. Either way, your CMS has the potential to be a major earner for you and you should accept nothing less.
If this sounds like you, an easy way to determine if your CMS is truly working for you is by simply measuring the number of enquiries which your site is generating, and how many of those enquiries are turning into actual dollars spent. If you can see that you’re generating a number of enquiries through your website but no dollars are being spent, this may point to your sales processes. However, if no enquiries are coming through your site, then it’s time to ask why potential customers are failing to enquire with you online.
Paul Dunstone is the Managing Director of OSE, a Brisbane-based digital agency specialising in content management solutions, app development and cloud services. Paul and his team are experts in CMS strategy and all things web and offer expertise in WordPress and Squiz Matrix powered web technologies.