Digital Agency Top Tips: What is a CMS and why do I need one?

A view of the WordPress CMS | Web Design Surrey

Do you have to ask your web designer to update your website for you?

Do you have your own website and have to edit an HTML page to add anything new? Back when websites first appeared, everything on a web page was contained in one file which might have been quite intimidating to edit if you weren’t a techie. The way the page was displayed, links to any graphics, hyperlinks to other pages and all the text was in the same file. When the Internet matured, first content management systems (CMS) started to appear; some of the first were blogging platforms like LiveJournal where people could log in, type into a box via their browser and publish directly onto the site without knowing a single piece of code. WordPpress started as a blogging platform and exists as such to this day. They offer a hosted service which is great if you don’t plan to have your own website and just want to blog casually.

Hosted or not?

Being hosted by WordPress can have its advantages if you haven’t got many people eager to read your blog – being part of the network of other bloggers at WordPress helps you connect to people who’ll get your updates when they choose to follow your blog. You’ll find it easier to seek out other WordPress bloggers and interact with their content. On the other hand, if you already have a website or want to start a new web design project alone or with the support of an agency, you would be much better off installing WordPress on your own server and hosting it yourself (or let the agency take care of that for you).

WordPress is not just a blogging platform these days – it’s actually a powerful content management system which can handle a website of almost any size from small brochure websites to a full-on e-commerce. One of the advantages of WordPress is that it’s an open-source project (which means the code used to develop it is public and available to all web designers). That means if your agency develops your website using WordPress, you aren’t bound to a system or a set of code that another developer couldn’t understand. The other benefit of WordPress is that you will be able to update your website (add and remove pictures, add text or even whole new pages) with just a small amount of training and practice. Forget about being held hostage by your web designer!

Keep your content fresh

It’s important to keep updating your website (whether it’s a news page, a blog or just fresh content elsewhere) for better search engine placement and so that your potential and existing customers will see something new when they visit. Business blogging becomes easier when your site is built on WordPress because you have the blog functionality built right in. Having a business blog is great because it’ll give you something to post to your social media channels, too, driving traffic back to your website.

Having the content and design separate is the way to go these days and if you’re still managing a website which requires technical expertise to update or several emails to your techie person, it’s time to look for a better alternative. We tend to favour WordPress here at Thunderbolt Digital and if you need help with any of the issues covered in this blog post or are interested in the other services we provide, do get in touch. We’ll give you free, impartial advice and direct you to just the things you need. We’re a full-service digital agency in Farnham, Surrey and love to help businesses succeed!

Image credit: Nojhan

CSS Design Awards Nominee