We currently live in a time where Search Engines rule the internet, and content is king. As companies and individuals alike try their hand at personally building their web presence, there are many factors that can make the task unbearable and overwhelming. Even for those of us who are in the web development and the marketing industry, starting a website from scratch is a somewhat daunting task.
This is where Open Source Content Management Systems (CMSs) offer some of the most cost effective, changeable and downright user friendly website development environments available.
Many CMS platforms are built in such ways that even the novice web developers can have a very functional website completely operational in a relatively short amount of time. This, however, does not eliminate the learning curve associated with these new platforms. There are a number of really good reasons to use an Open Source CMS, let me list a few:
- Cost effective – This is probably the first worry that comes to mind when trying to plan out a new website. Open Source platforms keep cost relatively low. If you use available add-ons and instructions, it’s very likely you will spend a whole lot of nothing on development.
- Installs quickly – I’ve mentioned previously how quickly even those with limited to no experience could have their website be up and running.
- Scalable and Flexible – There are more add-ons, tweeks and variations that have been created than you could ever think about installing. If there is some functionality that isn’t currently part of the general install, most likely someone has already created it and you could easily integrate it.
- Huge user groups – Need help? Answers? There are countless followers for each major Open Source platform who are ready to give sound advice related to setting up an operational site.
- Years of extensive development – Since many of the CMSs have been around for a number of years, they are relatively stable when it comes to functionality. Most of the bugs in a system are found during infant or initial stages of development. Having been around for a number of years, we should be past the worst of it.
Three of the most widely used Open Source Content Management Systems are WordPress, Joomla, and Drupal. All three can be downloaded for free and installed relatively quickly on most hosting plans. In fact, many hosting providers even have applications that install the program for you without having to worry about downloading and uploading, and so on. All three are widely used, so there is a ton of support and troubleshooting information online. There are also plenty of design themes already developed for each, which makes it easy to get a pretty good site up and running very quickly.
When it comes to planning, implementing and managing your new web presence there is definitely an easy, quick and effective way to get yourself online. Consider an Open Source CMS.