What is a CMS?

Webflow & Webflow Development

18 March 2020

You may be familiar with the acronym CMS, which stands for Content Management system. This is the name given to the tool or platform that allows non-developers to make content changes to a website without having to ask their agency to do so. Obviously there are situations where a website is updated so infrequently, that paying an agency on an ad-hoc basis can make sense, but by and large, having to go back to your designer/developer when you only want to update a news item, post a blog article or change some text copy is illogical.

A good CMS system should not, in our minds, impact in anyway on how the front-end (e.g. the public-facing side) of a website looks or behaves. This is one of the core reasons that having tried and tested a number of platforms over the preceding years, DUAL have firmly settled on Webflow as our system of choice.

WYSIWYG Editor

From a back-end point of view, some CMS systems present a very different look to administrators and editors, from how the actual website looks. WordPress in particular is a classic example of this, whereby the editing area is actually quite confusing for a novice user with a seemingly never-ending array of options and choices, none of which clearly correspond to anything that one sees if they go to the live website.

We strongly believe, that a good CMS should have a user interface that reduces the amount of thinking needed, to make things as intuitive as possible when making changes. Webflow offers this right out of the box, because there are no restrictions made in how creative we want to be. Every project undertaken starts from a completely blank canvas, where the website is uniquely designed and built in combination, after which the CMS module is then integrated onto it.

Webflow Content management photo

Previewing changes

Another area that many CMS platforms fall down on, is in their inability to allow an editor to preview changes before they go ahead and publish them live. We all know, the phrase 'belt and braces' and it's always preferable, particularly for someone relatively inexperienced with maintaining website content to feel confident in their role. Knowing that they can see what their changes will look like in an isolated environment before showing them to the World, well that just makes sense doesn't it.

The most popular Digital Education learning material