Over the past decade I have maintained a website in one form or another. My first attempts were done by using Microsoft Word and saving as an .html file. Then I started borrowing and improvising my own .html code in Dreamweaver (or an equivalent) for publishing either my own, or various other websites. Now, I am playing around with WordPress as a Content Management System (CMS) to see the benefits it can provide.
The first major difference is the development timeline of the website. In the past, I would create the .html files needed and test them on the desired platforms, and then contact the network administrator to get it published, a process that could take weeks, if not months. With CMS, the provider takes care of issues that I don’t want to worry about, such as browser compatibility and publishing, leaving me to just add content. While this is not perfect (there are noticeable rendering differences between Mozilla, Safari for iOS and Mac and IE for the theme I’m currently using), and there is less customization available to me, it does have major benefits, one being that as soon as I click publish, it is up and running and I spend less time trying to get the code to behave properly. The CMS provider, as they invariably have access to truck loads more bandwidth than I do, would also help make my site faster, as I host less content on my server.
Development costs for my site has always been small, it was just time spent as a hobby. However, small companies who need an online presence could also utilise CMS to allow them to easily implement websites with fresh content without hiring a web designer. As the management and page creation of this CMS website is all browser based they would not need to know any code or have access to servers as they can post content from a browser on their mobile device at any time, greatly increasing turnaround of content.
While I’m not sure if this CMS page will replace or be in addition to the planned improvements to my own site, I’m sure it will come in handy as at least an experiment in to the possibilities of CMS.