I recently picked up a copy of a book on Web Content Management with a certain “leading” brand of WCM software. Now, I shall skip who the book was by and even which software it is talking about, but I was happily flicking through and I came across the section “When should you not use a WCM system?.” Now, I was already a little shocked by this title, but then on second thoughts I would not use a WCM system to make a cup of tea or direct a light opera. But, in the context of a business website – and especially when written in a book about a WCM system – I just did not get why you would not use a WCM system.
After closer inspection of the reasons when not to use a WCM system, I found the reasons were:
- When most of the data on the website is fairly static and less prone to updates
- You have neither the time nor the money for training of the employees
- There is not much content to be displayed on the site
Now I *am* really shocked. Now in the section of “When you should use a WCM” it just describes the one reason why you should use a WCM system; “when you update content allot”.
From this point on I flicked back to the front of the book to see when it was published, I was thinking maybe 2000 or 1995 but no, 2006. Did we really think this way in 2006? It can’t be.
So, what are reasons to use a WCM system? And when not? I cannot think of any reason why you would not want to use a WCM of _some sort_. Maybe you do not want a massive WCM implementation when WordPress would do, a small WCM system maybe but WordPress still is a WCM System. A small scale WCM system won’t need massive training not like the larger players, will it?
OK, so when should you use a WCM system? Here are some of my reasons that may be applied to one or more size of WCM system as I am not going to categorise them:
- When you have frequent updates to your website (OK, I was handed this one)
- When you want to use a single source of content for multiple channels (brand consistency)
- When you want to localise the same single source of content for multiple country websites (translation)
- When you want to manage content from a single location (maintainability)
- When you don’t want (your editors) to have to learn HTML
- When you want to seperate content from layout
Of course my list is not complete and leans towards large WCM implementations – it is my stomping ground afterall. So, I ask, are there more reasons why you would use a WCM system? Anyone?