Content Management Systems (CMS)

Content Management Systems (CMS) Overview

The term Content Management Systems (CMS) commonly refers to platforms that support the design, development, and publication of website content. These systems organize, track, and retain digital content such as documents, text, images, audio, and video. They enable the delivery of a consistent brand experience across multiple platforms and devices. Some CMS solutions require no coding or technical expertise, other solutions require additional knowledge to take advantage of their customizable features.

CMS vs Website Builder Software

CMS software overlaps with Website Builder Software that contains CMS features and provides hosting services but has limited features and capabilities when compared to more robust CMS solutions.

Blogging Platforms are an example of a CMS platform that is exclusively devoted to supporting blogging. Closely related categories include Enterprise CMS, which manages digital content across an entire organization, and Content Marketing Software, which offer tools that extend the functionality of content management systems.

Top Rated Content Management Products

TrustRadius Top Rated for 2022

These products won a Top Rated award for having excellent customer satisfaction ratings. The list is based purely on reviews; there is no paid placement, and analyst opinions do not influence the rankings. Read more about the Top Rated criteria.

Category Videos

Best Content Management Systems - Which one is right for you?
04:38
Learn more about 3 of the most popular Content Management Systems, the pros and cons of each, and who they are best suited for.
Wix vs WordPress, Which is Right for you Business?
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Wix and WordPress are both popular tools for building websites, but it can be hard to decide which one is best for your organization's need. We go over the top features and use cases for each tool.

Content Management Systems (CMS) TrustMap

TrustMaps are two-dimensional charts that compare products based on trScore and research frequency by prospective buyers. Products must have 10 or more ratings to appear on this TrustMap.

Content Management Products

(51-75 of 154) Sorted by Most Reviews

The list of products below is based purely on reviews (sorted from most to least). There is no paid placement and analyst opinions do not influence their rankings. Here is our Promise to Buyers to ensure information on our site is reliable, useful, and worthy of your trust.

Pixpa

Pixpa is an all-in-one platform to create websites with an integrated e-commerce store, client galleries, blog, online stores without any coding knowledge. Pixpa aims to enable creators to manage their whole web presence from one seamless, versatile platform, hence saving time and…

MODX

The MODX Digital Experience Platform provides everything you need to build, host, and maintain amazing websites your way. The vendor says that with MODX CMS and cloud hosting, users have complete control over their creative vision and the experiences they deliver, without restriction…

Arena.im

Arena.im is a live chat, live blog, and content wall solution that can be embedded on a website, from the company of the same name headquartered in San Francisco. The solution avails an in-built customer data platform that enables users to activate individual marketing with centralized…

Agility CMS

Agility CMS is a cloud-based content management system from the company of the same name in Toronto, Ontario.

Acoustic Content

Acoustic Content (formerly Watson Content Hub) gives business owners the power to create, robust and consistent brand experiences using cloud-based, cognitive content management capabilities. Marketing and merchandising professionals can quickly select content to create relevant…

Curata

Curata's content marketing platform (Curata CMP) enables more efficient content creation with greater impact on pipeline. According to the vendor, this solution enables users to: Analyze marketing and sales pipeline impact: Instantly access content metrics such as leads generated/…

SiteExecutive

SiteExecutive from Systems Alliance provides a flexible, capability-rich content managemant system that is available for local-hosting or as a SaaS.

Live Center - Live Blogging

Live Center is a live blogging solution that allows users to cover breaking news, sports, conferences, and other events in live news feeds. Live Centers allows customers to manage live blog design, behavior, and interaction with users, as well as create live blogs that are integrated…

Maglr

Maglr is a cloud-based content creation platform that helps brands and organisations to create and publish visual interactive stories, without having to write a single line of code. Used for corporate communication (e.g. annual reports, digital magazines), content marketing (e.g.…

CommonSpot

CommonSpot is a Web platform that includes a content management system, an application development framework, marketing solutions, and social media features from PaperThin, Inc, a privately held, MA-based company. PaperThin's customers span multiple industries, including: government,…

Siteglide

Siteglide is a content management software offering from the company of the same name headquartered in Aldermaston.

Kontent by Kentico

Kontent by Kentico is a headless CMS that enables users to build modern applications. On top of its headless foundation, Kontent includes an authoring experience that lets marketers focus on content creation and business workflows without requiring developer involvement. This is…

OpenText WEM

OpenText's Web Experience Management is part of the Customer Experience suite and is based on the Vignette product that OpenText acquired in 2009.

Divi

More than just a WordPress theme, Divi is a website building platform that replaces the standard WordPress post editor with a new visual editor. The vendor states it can be enjoyed by design professionals and newcomers alike, and is designed to give users the ability to create spectacular…

TERMINALFOUR

TerminalFour Site Manager is the principal product from the global software company of the same name, a content management system available for local-hosting or cloud-based, primarily targeted at educational institutions, government and international bodies, but also retail and financial…

Storyblok

Storyblok helps teams to tell their stories and manage their content for every use-case: corporate websites, e-commerce, helpdesks, mobile apps, and screen displays. Storyblok features: Visual Editor: Live preview changes made on a websiteComponent approach: Nestable content bloks…

Amaxus CMS (discontinued)

Amaxus was a commercial PHP-based content management system from Box UK, an agile software developer and consulting company. It provided an enterprise-level web content management system used by large brand and agencies. It is known for a focus on usability. The product has been…

LightCMS (discontinued)

LightCMS, from NetSuite, was a cloud-based content management system for building websites and eCommerce storefronts. It is designed to be used by individuals, non-profits, and small to medium-sized businesses. The product has been discontinued.

NVU

NVU is an open source web authoring tool for Linux, Windows, and Mac. It is designed to allow users to create web pages and manage a website with no technical expertise or knowledge of HTML.

Overdrive

Overdrive is designed for organisations using G Suite in both business and education. It makes workspaces and sites, transforming Drive and other G Suite content into web pages automatically. Overdrive can be used to build custom sites of any shape and size, with no need to upload…

Pegboard

Pegboard is an Australian company and its CMS product is aimed primarily at SMBs and agencies.

Dynamicweb CMS

DynamicWeb is an all-in-one marketing, ecommerce, and content management platform from Dynamicweb Software in Denmark. It is meant to integrate with existing ERP, CRM, or SharePoint to create a comprehensive and simplified solution for small to medium-sized businesses.

AtomicWriter

AtomicWriter helps users create original content optimized to maximize visibility for content marketing campaigns.

Contentstack

Contentstack headquartered in San Francisco offers an API-first headless CMS. From desktops to smart phones, from kiosks to smart watches, from billboards to jumbotrons, from dashboards to VR headsets – content is delivered with the push of a button and optimized for every screen,…

eZ Platform

ezPlatform, formerly ezPublish is a content management solution from eZ Systems. The vendor says their solution provides organizations with the technology and framework to build a suite of digital experiences including news and media sites, brand sites, multichannel apps and the…

Learn More About Content Management Systems (CMS)

What are Content Management Systems (CMS)?

The term Content Management Systems (CMS) commonly refers to platforms that support the design, development, and publication of website content. These systems organize, track, and retain digital content such as documents, text, images, audio, and video. They enable the delivery of a consistent brand experience across multiple platforms and devices. Some CMS solutions require no coding or technical expertise, other solutions require additional knowledge to take advantage of their customizable features.

CMS vs Website Builder Software

CMS software overlaps with Website Builder Software that contains CMS features and provides hosting services but has limited features and capabilities when compared to more robust CMS solutions.

Blogging Platforms are an example of a CMS platform that is exclusively devoted to supporting blogging. Closely related categories include Enterprise CMS, which manages digital content across an entire organization, and Content Marketing Software, which offer tools that extend the functionality of content management systems.

Content Management Systems (CMS) Features

Content Management Systems (CMS) include many of the following features.

  • Support multiple website use cases
  • Content planning and management tools
  • Omni-channel delivery, multi-device, and browser support
  • Site design themes
  • Pre Built page templates
  • Plugins
  • Multimedia, images, audio, and video
  • Forms
  • WYSIWYG (what-you-see-is-what-you-get) editor
  • Drag and Drop
  • Content tagging
  • Customization and code editing
  • Content versioning and archiving
  • AI dynamic page personalization
  • Dynamic content
  • Machine learning image recognition and tagging
  • SEO
  • XML
  • Multiple users
  • Collaboration and publishing workflow
  • Analytics and reporting
  • Scalable
  • Mobile optimization
  • Cloud-based, on-premises, or hybrid installation

Content Management Systems (CMS) Comparison

Use Case: Some CMSs are tailored for specific uses. Shopify, BigCommerce, and Magento are used for eCommerce sites. HubSpot CMS readily supports business and marketing sites through its integration with HubSpot’s CRM, marketing, sales, and service tools. Where site design is a primary consideration, Squarespace is a popular choice. Drupal is employed to support flexible customization and large amounts of data and transactions. The extensive functionality provided by free and paid plugins, along with a vast pool of community resources and support, makes Wordpress.org the most widely used CMS.

Skill Level: CMS have varying expertise requirements. Wix is a good choice for beginners that have modest website requirements, requiring no coding or technical knowledge. Wordpress.org is used by both new and experienced users. Free open-source systems such as Drupal and Joomla have a greater learning curve.

Portability: When selecting your first CMS, investigate how readily your content and data can be exported to other systems if your needs change.

Costs: Even free open-source CMS systems will entail additional website-related costs such as domain registration, hosting, and paid plugins when needed.

Start a Content Management Systems (CMS) comparison here

Pricing Information

Prices start around $12 a month and range up to $300 a month or more depending on the features provided and the amount of data or number of transactions supported. One-time licensing for robust CMS exceeds $1,000. CMS for enterprise eCommerce begins around $500 a month and vendor price quotes are often required. eCommerce CMS pricing usually includes hosting services. Full-featured open-source CMS solutions are available. Free trials are available.

Content Management Systems (CMS) Best Of Awards

The following Content Management Systems (CMS) offer award-winning customer relationships, feature sets, and value for price. Learn more about our Best Of Awards methodology here.

Best Content Management Systems (CMS)

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Frequently Asked Questions

What are the main features included in CMS platforms?

Most CMS platforms include basic website creation and content management features. These include: a WYSIWYG editor, web page layout templates and themes, content versioning and archiving, a publishing workflow, content scheduler/calendar, content tagging tools, and mobile optimization capabilities. More advanced CMS platforms may include more features aimed at managing content with complex structures across multiple webpages.

Can I use CMS to build an ecommerce website?

Yes, CMS products can be used to build an ecommerce website and manage site content (e.g. product catalog, product descriptions, images, etc..). If you’re planning on using your CMS to build and run an online store, here are a few must-have features:

  • WYSIWYG editor
  • Publishing tools
  • Admin controls
  • SEO marketing tools
  • Deep website customization capabilities
  • Social media & email marketing integrations
  • A/B testing capabilities
  • Analytics and reporting metrics

How much do Content Management Systems (CMS) cost?

Many enterprise-scale CMS solutions require a price quote. For most CMS providers, pricing starts at $12 a month and can exceed $300 a month depending on their features. Free open-source software is available, as are free trials.

What does content management system (CMS) software do?

Content Management Systems facilitate the creation and publication of website content. They support website design and manage digital content including documents, text, images, audio, and video. eCommerce businesses, corporations, organizations, bloggers, and artists use CMS solutions to help build their websites.