Which CMS is Right for You?

Which CMS is right for you

Content management systems make it easier to handle all of the features of the digital content you want to present to the world. Such applications allow you to add, remove, or rearrange everything from videos and images to the specific text on your various webpages and posts. And because your content should always be changing, especially if you want to continue to place well on search engines, it can be a mammoth task to do it yourself, which is what makes content management systems so appealing. When it comes to actually choosing a CMS, however, there are differences among some of the most popular ones you’ll want to consider when deciding which CMS is right for you.

Shopify CMS

Physical and digital goods can be sold with sites you can create with the customizable templates available with the Shopify CMS. You don’t have to be familiar with things like CSS and HTML to use Shopify, but you do get a lot of control over how you design your templates. Plus payments for your sales can be accepted from 70 different payment processors.

Already powering nearly 400,000 online shops, Shopify integrates its services with other vendors. Because of this, you get access to related services all from one CMS. You’ll get access to more than a hundred templates via the Theme Store. You get a decent selection of themes conveniently grouped by industry. A lot of these themes were designed by professional website designers and it shows. Tools are available to help with tasks such as fulfillment, shipping, inventory management, accounting, and social media.

Five plans are available. The “Shopify Lite” version is basically a bare bones version of the site. You’ll able to sell all the goods you want from existing websites or blogs, but you won’t get a fully functional standalone store. If you choose one of the more advanced plans, you will get some appealing perks, including the ability to automatically email customers who put something in their cart but didn’t wrap up the purchase and real-time carrier shipping.


• Native plugins that are supported better
• Large app store with more than 1,400 apps
• Point-of-sale system to integrate your online and offline sales system
• 24/7 online and phone support


• Shopify uses its own coding language and if you don’t know “Liquid,” you may have some difficulty customizing your themes
• There are monthly fees, transaction fees, add-on fees, and credit card fees, but Shopify is very transparent about these fees
• It can be difficult to transfer your Shopify site to another another e-commerce provider

WordPress CMS

The WordPress CMS is likely the one you’re most familiar with since it supports more than 70 million sites. Launched in 2003, this open CMS has a reputation as being the go-to platform for blog creation. And this is still the core function of WP even though they’ve added appealing e-commerce features. You’re going to limited to certain templates; but if you want to keep things simple for your online setup, WordPress can definitely get you started.

You’ll easily find add-on you can use for things like site maps and email help forms. A lot of the native and third-party plugins are ideal if you’re running a small business website and need to quickly add shopping carts, buy buttons, and other features to your pages. You can also setup inventory tracking and management and point-of-sale systems without having to worry about coding.

The drag-and-drop features are great since you don’t need to have any experience with website design to know what you’re getting or how to put whatever you want to add where you want it to go. It doesn’t have any site and style wizards though, so it’s not entirely newbie-friendly. Because WordPress is so popular, you will have access to large support community via various blogs, social media posts, and forum contributions where you can find source codes for features you may want to add to your site.


• Extensive selection of plugins (over 15,000)
• Good user-side security features
• Clearly labeled dashboard
• SEO plug-ins are available to help with things like meta descriptions and H1 tags
• Optimized for mobile users


• Doesn’t support database reports
• WP software needs to be updated on a regular basis
• It’s not easy to customize your layout beyond what you get with the templates
• There’s not a lot of language variety if you need to tap into different International markets

Magento CMS

The out-of-the-box capabilities and customizable themes make the Magento CMS worthy of consideration. Launched in 2008, this e-commerce application has an user-friendly dashboard that’s easy to navigate regardless of your website design skills. You can use any of the available templates or create your own.

For e-commerce purposes, it can be used to set up a single store or you may manage content for multiple e-commerce sites. And when orders are placed, integration partners that include QuickBooks and NetSuite help you update things like order status and tracking info.

Magento’s community forums include contributions from more than 100,000 developers so you can find codes specific to your needs or create your own widgets. The software also has features you can set up to meet your billing and invoicing needs.


• Sites can be created in different languages
• They provide technical consultations
• Plenty of free ready-made add-on (plus some affordable ones for purchase)
• Alerts to let customers know when an out-of-stock product is available


• It requires regular maintenance of things like caches and logs
• Customizations require some developer skills
• It requires a lot of server resources
• Operational costs are higher than what’s necessary for other e-commerce content management systems

Altogether there are more than 300 content management programs out there. Some are better for niche content and others have an assortment of bells and whistles similar to the ones mentioned here. Which CMS you ultimately choose will depend on your specific content needs and goals. For instance, the WordPress CMS is a common choice, but Shopify tends to work better for e-commerce sites. Make it easier to narrow down your CMS selection by clearly defining the goals you have for your online content and e-commerce endeavors and keeping the user experience in mind; Google likes that and so will your intended audience and potential customers.