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The Importance of a CMS for your Online Store

In today’s digital marketing landscape, websites are only as good as the content they provide to their readers. How engaging is the content? How useful is it? How does it differentiate itself from the competition? These questions and others have to be answered in order to ensure that we are driving meaningful conversations with our customers.

Good website content is critical because it is the center of any digital marketing campaign. From content marketing, to email, mobile and social media, all directions point to our website. In fact, according to ALF Insights 2016, over 35% of marketers say that websites are their strongest channel for driving the most ROI.

A website is a company’s flagship source of content. When our websites are accessible, easy-to-use, and credible, we have the potential to make the most out of our marketing and sales efforts. And how do we ensure that we reach these and other marketing goals? It’s quite simple; we need to build our websites using a content management; system (CMS). So what’s a CMS and how does it impact our online stores? This paper will familiarize you with the capabilities of the software in order that you make the right decisions before building your eCommerce website.

What’s a CMS?

A content management system (CMS) enables you to build and track of every piece of content on your website. Content could be pages, posts, photos, videos, docs, and just about any other type of data. A CMS centrally organizes all of your website’s content - instead of being in multiple systems and locations, it’s all stored in the CMS.

According to KaPost, content creation and management now claim the second-largest share of digital marketing budgets. That’s why top performing marketers use the kind of CMS that helps the layman employee to track content, while allowing more technical employees to handle the look and feel of the website. A good CMS gets rid of the tedious, repetitive tasks of website maintenance so that changes and additions could be made at anytime, and with ease.

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Why do you need a CMS?

Your website is a content repository. That’s why according to Content Marketing Institute, 44% of B2B marketers have a documented content strategy in place, and 73% have a person who oversees content marketing strategy. The ability to create, manage, distribute, and publish content enables you to have complete control over our information. From managing the structure of the site, to tweaking the appearance of published pages, you are able to provide the best possible Web experience for our customers.

Leading eCommerce companies utilize CMS to enable their in-house teams to manage their site’s content without hiring an external source to create changes. This means significant cost savings over time. What’s more is that a CMS for an eCommerce website enables you to work with a fully featured tool without having to custom-coding anything - it’s all ready to go with prebuilt functionality from the very basic to the most advanced.

Let’s look at 5 key features that a CMS should incorporate in order for you to take control of your eCommerce store’s look, feel, navigation, and content.

  1. Content Builder

    A CMS platform allows you to create beautiful webpages and blog/news posts. While many platforms only provide a WYSIWYG editor, more robust platforms offer a library of prebuilt templates and widgets (as well as the ability for you to create your own) using a drag & drop content builder. Some CMS platforms do not build fully mobile responsive pages, which can limit your rankings in search gateways like Google. Top CMS platforms create fully responsive layouts for both desktop and mobile, with drag & drop functionality, without the need for any design or programming knowledge.

  2. Membership/account access

    Granting all visitors to your site access to all of your content is a risky proposition. By limiting access via features like memberships, your customers can gain exclusive access to content, driving sales an securing high-value content.. By requiring visitors to create accounts to see content, you can limit access from both nefarious people and web bots. By further limiting access by membership, you can keep high-value content in the hands of only those who have paid for that access. Via these tools, you can grant access to only pertinent content, and keep irrelevant content from distracting your visitors.

  3. Theme Builder

    Many CMS platforms require premium themes to be purchased, and often the amount of customization is limited. A robust CMS theme builder gives users access to hundreds of theme options that can be customized without any special coding skills. Everything from button colors and size, to space between and space around page elements can be changed. The right platform also allows for the creation of unique themes for specific pages, so that you can theme different parts of your site appropriately.

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  1. Integration

    Having your content in a silo from the rest of your site’s functionality is limiting. Integrating your content into other features like a product catalog is freeing. Using the product widget, products are displayed with links to the cart; themes are assigned to specific pages and posts allowing to build multiple websites or single pages with their own designs. And memberships are required to access specific posts enabling you to build multiple websites or pages each with their own membership requirements.

  2. Management

    While many CMS platforms require a developer who knows how to setup a server, how to install WordPress and other required server software, and how to keep everything up-to-date, the right provider manages all the servers, software, and updates. No need to hire a developer to help build your website, the right provider manages all of it for you.

Key takeaway

In order to create a seamless shopping experience on our eCommerce websites, we need to have the ability to easily update, add and manage each component of our online store. The right CMS allows us to not only manage our products and orders, but also our customers, promotions and discounts. Customization and scalability is another key capability that has to be considered when building a website. Running an eCommerce online store should be simple, and that can be achieved with a CMS.

How effective are you at engaging with your audiences? Are you making the shopping experience easier for them? If you are looking to connect with your audiences on a 1:1 level, you need to create an intuitive and engaging online store to get them to buy, come back, and refer you to their friends.

Is Configio right for you?

Configio is a leading eCommerce platform. Since 2005, Configio has been on a mission to empower retailers and brands to effectively manage complex customer purchases, sales leads, email lists, business contacts, staff members and more in a single consolidated software solution. Today, they are a trusted source for over 2,000 customers across the world. Configio software, services and support have transformed the way retailers interact with digital buyers. The product enables merchants to create effective shopping experiences and is highly ranked in customer satisfaction working to effectively engage with leads, prospects, and customers.

Configio is reinventing the way merchants operate their eCommerce stores. Not only can the platform impress customers with a beautiful online platform, it can turn leads into buyers and build a customer base in any and all markets. Configio is headquartered in Spokane, Washington. Learn more at www.configio.com.

How effective have you been in engaging and delighting your customers? Perhaps it’s time to create the kind of shopping experience that will keep your audiences coming back for more.

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