Content management systems were made to make our lives easier. And while they usually do just that, sometimes they can become part of the problem and not the solution. It’s important to identify the signs that you might’ve outgrown your CMS early on and come up with solutions before they become serious issues for your business. Let’s go over how your CMS might be holding you back from growth.
8 Signs you've outgrown your current CMS
A CMS is meant to be your main command centre for content. It should minimise the amount of effort and resources you need to create, edit, manage and publish content. It’s the cornerstone of every marketer’s daily work. So how to objectively tell that it’s just not working anymore? Here’s 8 signs to look for:
1. You're using multiple CMSs
As we mentioned above, your CMS should be at the centre of everything you do that’s content-related. If you’re using multiple different content management systems or content repositories, it’s your first sign that they might be slowing you down. Multiple different CMSs is a problem for many reasons - it forces you to spend more time publishing and editing content as well as makes it harder to manage content across all the platforms.
2. You're increasingly relying on more and more people to publish
The point of having a CMS is to decrease your and your team’s dependency on developers and designers when publishing new content. However, with a monolithic, traditional CMS, one change can often have a domino effect on other elements of the frontend, meaning you will need help from developers to fix those areas. If you’re noticing that this happens to you more and more often - it’s a clear sign your current CMS is no longer suited to your needs.
3. The CMS is holding you back from implementing new, innovative solutions
Another sign that your CMS might be holding you back is that you can’t implement new solutions or features because it would take too much time and work, not be compatible with the CMS or disrupt other areas of the frontend. For example, let’s say you want to introduce a new product type as a result of customer feedback. But to do so in your CMS you’d need countless developer work hours, so the idea gets shot down. If that sounds familiar, it might be time to consider leaving your current CMS behind.
4. You and your team are wasting time troubleshooting and fixing bugs
If you notice that you and your team are spending more and more time researching plugins and looking for ways to fix technical problems instead of focusing on creating useful content - the reason might be that you’ve outgrown your current CMS. Your content management system should not be causing you to waste time on troubleshooting, instead it should be part of the solution. Ask your team about how they find working with your current CMS and whether they’re experiencing any issues - this is a great way to assess how seriously you should consider switching to a different CMS.
5. Your content and development processes are entangled
Your content and development team’s workflows should be flowing smoothly, side by side. Publishing and editing content should not affect the developers’ work and the development team should easily be able to extract content from the CMS as needed. If that’s not the case for you and your team, it’s an important sign that you might’ve outgrown your current CMS. If your team needs developers to push out new content or edit it, it’s time to consider whether your CMS is still working for you.
6. Content bottlenecks are holding back your projects
Another sign that your CMS might not be suited to your needs anymore is when you notice that content bottlenecks are holding you and your team back. A lot of marketing managers report that this tends to be an issue for them and it often can be solved with changing or updating your CMS.
7. You cant' scale your infrastructure efficiently
Your CMS should enable you to scale your content easily and effectively as your business grows. For a lot of businesses, that’s not the case. Especially with traditional, monolithic CMS platforms, it can be quite challenging to scale your infrastructure or add new features without affecting the user experience or disrupting some elements of the architecture. If that’s the case for you and your team, it’s time to consider switching to a different CMS.
8. The CMS is negatively affecting the user experience of your digital product
As a result of some of the issues mentioned above, your CMS can affect the user experience of your product negatively. Especially when scaling up, some content management systems tend to have longer load times and issues with device compatibility. If your business heavily relies on its digital products, this is not a risk worth taking.
Should you consider switching to a Headless CMS?
A lot of the issues mentioned above can be solved by switching to a headless CMS as opposed to a new traditional one or improving your existing solution. Traditional (monolithic) CMS platforms consist of both the frontend and the backend (or the head and the body). This means you use the CMS to manage not only the content but also the channel you distribute it to, like your website or application. While this is convenient, it can become the opposite if you’re managing more than one distribution channel. A headless CMS, as the name suggests, doesn’t feature the frontend or the “head” element. Headless CMS platforms are made only to create, edit, publish and manage content on the backend. The content is then distributed to all the channels via API, which makes it easy to implement across different platforms and devices. This essentially frees up your content and enables you to use it without any frontend limitations.
A headless CMS can be the perfect future-proof solution for many businesses and teams, with that said, it always comes down to your specific needs and objectives. If you need an experienced team to help you come up with innovative, technological solutions - contact us and let’s get your project started!
Per André is a Co-founder at Frontkom with 14+ years of experience as CTO and CIO. He has extensive experience with people and technology for both private and public sector. He is also co-founder of Dignio Health Tech, SMSpay, Web3 enthusiast and Co-pastor of 3:16. Per André writes about CMS, headless, awesome tech and team composition and efficiency.