Contrary to a static website, a CMS or Content Management System based website is database driven or in other words is a dynamic website. The website information is stored in a database and is fetched in real time when a user looks for that information. Static website has the website information hard coded or written on the web page itself. So if you need to modify a static website you will have to modify the actual content on the webpage and publish it again to the web server using some sort of ftp software. This involves some sort of technical knowledge on part of the user and therefore is not possible for every website owner to do so. On the contrary, it is very easy to update a CMS website from the website Dashboard. It is a password protected area and can be accessed only by authorised users, thus ensuring that the website content can be modified by only legitimate and authorized personnel. Some of the imminent advantages of using a CMS are given below.
Freshness Of Content
A Content Management System makes it very easy to update the website. Simply login to the Admin Control Panel or the Dashboard, and you can create a new page or post with the click of a button. You can add content, images, audio and video which make it super easy to add or update content on the website. This ensures that the content on the website is always fresh and updated. Increasingly websites are seen as the face of a company and having updated content can create a good impression among its users. Apart from the website information pages, a company may wish to update their website on a regular basis by publishing company news, press releases, events that happen in the company etc. A company that does so gives the impression of a forward looking company than the others who do not.
Some websites that are information centric and have hundreds and thousands of pages have no other option but to opt for a CMS as it would become impossible to manage it otherwise.
Implementation Of Site Search
Such a website with many thousands of pages would need a mechanism to search for the information that the user is looking for. It then becomes an important aspect of the website. Since all the information in a CMS website is stored in a database, search implementation is possible. Almost all CMS websites have search functionality inbuilt which enables the user to search and pin point the information he or she is looking for. Without this functionality it may become meaningless to have such huge sites.
Use Of Templates
Design of the website is done with the use of templates. This has a lot of advantages over traditional websites where changing the design meant redesign of the entire website itself. With the use of CMS you don’t need to do that. Website design can be changed by simply choosing a new template for the CMS. There are many free templates available for popular CMS platforms like WordPress, Blogger, Joomla, DNN etc. Simply choose the template you want, download it and apply it to your website or blog. If it is a business website, and you need a unique designed template, specifically made for you, you could always ask your web designer to do this for you.
Remember, there is separation of content and design here, so a new design or template would not interfere with you website content in any way.
Easy To Use And Operate
A CMS website is very easy and intuitive to use. For all popular CMS platforms, ample amount of help is available online should you need help with any aspect of your CMS website like installation, usage of the CMS, and also troubleshooting tips. No technical knowledge is required to operate a CMS and therefore anybody can do this and eliminates the requirement of specialized people to use the CMS website.
Access & Update Website From Anywhere
You do not need specialized software or any specific kind of technological environment to access and update the website. Any computing device connected to the internet would be good enough for the job. Simply log in to the Administrator area and you are ready to add or edit the website as required.
Roles Based User Access
Almost all CMS allows for role based user access to the CMS website. Depending on the role assigned to you by the website administrator, you are either allowed or restricted access to certain parts of the website. This is useful as you can allow an author to write on your blog but not to publish it online. An editor can then look over the file, make amendments, and quickly publish the file on the website when done. This is very useful in a multi user environment when responsibilities need to be divided among different users.
Easy Availability Of Plugins And Widgets
Another important feature that makes a CMS prices less is the option to install plugins and widgets. There is an active community around almost all CMS platforms that help build plugins and widgets that extend the functionality that a CMS offers. A CMS may offer a specific set of features and functions, and your requirement could be for more. A plugin or widget can bridge this gap and provide features that do not come standard with the CMS. There are thousands of free and paid plugins available for almost any job or feature you can think of.
Good For SEO
CMS websites are also good for SEO. Freshness of content is one factor that helps, as it is believed that some search engines give preference to website with new and updated content than websites with stale and outdated content. Usage of social media plugins help in weaving a community around your blog. RSS feeds which are automatically generated by blogs or CMS websites can increase the number of subscribers and readers to your site. Url rewriting can be implemented easily which produces clean urls without parameters which further help in seo. There are plugins available that specifically help with website seo.
The advantages that come with a CMS website are many and varied as is clearly stated above. If you have to choose between a static and a CMS website, the points above would help you make up your mind.