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Cascade CMS

Cascade CMS
Formerly Cascade Server

Overview

What is Cascade CMS?

Cascade CMS (formerly Cascade Server) by Hannon Hill is a content management system, with built-in tools to help users eliminate stale content, increase digital outreach, and promote end-user adoption and accountability. Cascade CMS is designed for decentralized web teams…

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Recent Reviews

TrustRadius Insights

Cascade Server is a highly versatile content management system widely used by universities and colleges to manage multiple websites across …
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Cascade Server rocks!

10 out of 10
February 23, 2020
Incentivized
Cascade Server is the perfect CMS for our needs and is being used in several schools across the university. Cascade Server is powerful in …
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Popular Features

View all 16 features
  • Publishing workflow (19)
    9.0
    90%
  • Role-based user permissions (19)
    8.0
    80%
  • Admin section (19)
    8.0
    80%
  • WYSIWYG editor (19)
    6.1
    61%
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Pricing

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Unavailable

What is Cascade CMS?

Cascade CMS (formerly Cascade Server) by Hannon Hill is a content management system, with built-in tools to help users eliminate stale content, increase digital outreach, and promote end-user adoption and accountability. Cascade CMS is designed for decentralized web teams in most major industries,…

Entry-level set up fee?

  • Setup fee optional

Offerings

  • Free Trial
  • Free/Freemium Version
  • Premium Consulting/Integration Services

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Alternatives Pricing

What is Squarespace?

Squarespace is a CMS platform that allows users to create a DIY blog, eCommerce store, and/or portfolio (visual art or music). Some Squarespace website and shop templates are industry or use case-specific, such as menu builders for restaurant sites.

What is ExpressionEngine?

ExpressionEngine is a content management system from EllisLab in 2002, a successor to pMachine Pro, a blogging system, which is written in object-oriented PHP and uses MySQL for data storage. ExpressionEngine is their flagship Content Delivery Platform.

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Features

Security

This component helps a company minimize the security risks by controlling access to the software and its data, and encouraging best practices among users.

8
Avg 8.0

Platform & Infrastructure

Features related to platform-wide settings and structure, such as permissions, languages, integrations, customizations, etc.

7.1
Avg 7.7

Web Content Creation

Features that support the creation of website content.

7.1
Avg 7.6

Web Content Management

Features for managing website content

6.9
Avg 7.3
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Product Details

What is Cascade CMS?

Cascade CMS (formerly Cascade Server) by Hannon Hill is a content management system, with built-in tools to help users eliminate stale content, increase digital outreach, and promote end-user adoption and accountability. Cascade CMS is designed for decentralized web teams in most major industries, including higher education, government, healthcare, and technology.

Included is Clive, an engagement and real-time personalization tool for collecting information and using it to craft personalized web experiences. With it, users can build profiles and engage with audiences through targeted content delivery.

Cascade CMS Features

Web Content Creation Features

  • Supported: WYSIWYG editor
  • Supported: Code quality / cleanliness
  • Supported: Content versioning
  • Supported: Admin section
  • Supported: Page templates
  • Supported: Mobile optimization / responsive design
  • Supported: Publishing workflow
  • Supported: Form generator
  • Supported: Content scheduling

Web Content Management Features

  • Supported: Internal content search
  • Supported: Content taxonomy
  • Supported: SEO support
  • Supported: Browser compatibility
  • Supported: Bulk management
  • Supported: Availability / breadth of extensions
  • Supported: Import / export
  • Supported: Website analytics

Platform & Infrastructure Features

  • Supported: API
  • Supported: Internationalization / multi-language

Security Features

  • Supported: Role-based user permissions
  • Supported: User-level audit trail
  • Supported: Version history
  • Supported: Simple roll-back capabilities

CMS programming language or framework Features

  • Supported: PHP
  • Supported: Python
  • Supported: Java
  • Supported: .NET

Additional Features

  • Supported: Full support of COPE (create once, publish everywhere)

Cascade CMS Video

Using Velocity and XSLT in Cascade Server

Cascade CMS Competitors

Cascade CMS Technical Details

Deployment TypesOn-premise, Software as a Service (SaaS), Cloud, or Web-Based
Operating SystemsWindows, Linux, Mac
Mobile ApplicationNo

Frequently Asked Questions

Cascade CMS (formerly Cascade Server) by Hannon Hill is a content management system, with built-in tools to help users eliminate stale content, increase digital outreach, and promote end-user adoption and accountability. Cascade CMS is designed for decentralized web teams in most major industries, including higher education, government, healthcare, and technology. Included is Clive, an engagement and real-time personalization tool for collecting information and using it to craft personalized web experiences. With it, users can build profiles and engage with audiences through targeted content delivery.

OU Campus and Drupal are common alternatives for Cascade CMS.

Reviewers rate Page templates and Publishing workflow and Bulk management highest, with a score of 9.

The most common users of Cascade CMS are from Enterprises (1,001+ employees).
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Comparisons

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Reviews and Ratings

(58)

Community Insights

TrustRadius Insights are summaries of user sentiment data from TrustRadius reviews and, when necessary, 3rd-party data sources. Have feedback on this content? Let us know!

Cascade Server is a highly versatile content management system widely used by universities and colleges to manage multiple websites across various departments and administrative offices. Users with no web technology experience have found Cascade Server to be easy to navigate and use, resulting in an efficient web publishing environment. This has allowed departments with high update rates to have immediate control and updates through the IT department's back-end design and structural support.

Scripps Research, for example, has implemented Cascade Server across its entire institute, empowering individuals, studies, and departments to create their own websites without extensive intervention from the IT department. This has significantly saved time and costs. Northern Illinois University also relies on Cascade Server as its main web client, enabling everyone in the organization to easily update and manage their web pages, particularly in the Marketing and Web Communications Department.

Cascade Server's robust features such as versioning, check-in/out assets, workflow management, and cross-site sharing capabilities make it a powerful tool for managing multiple sites, approving content, and maintaining version control. With its intuitive user interface, staff can efficiently retrieve information from the content repository throughout the workday. Additionally, Cascade Server's integration with Spectate allows for personalized web content, easy form generation, and lead tracking. It serves as a comprehensive suite of web content tools that cater to diverse organizational needs.

The flexibility, adaptability, and scalability of Cascade Server have made it ideal for universities and organizations seeking a powerful CMS solution. Its ability to assign different roles and levels of access has been praised by users for providing a self-service tool for end users without web management experience. Furthermore, Cascade Server has enabled departments and programs without technical resources to build and maintain their own sites effectively. It has become instrumental in managing content from hundreds of university web pages while ensuring consistency across the organization. Additionally, Cascade Server has proven valuable for managing online journals by simplifying text placement, image inclusion, document attachment tasks, thus enhancing efficiency in journal management.

Time-saving Tool: Users have found Cascade Server to be a valuable time-saving tool for monitoring stale content and broken links on their public site. They appreciate the automatic handling of version upgrades on the cloud, which has been lightning fast and only takes about half an hour to convert a site with a large number of assets.

Intuitive Permissions: Setting permissions in Cascade Server is described as intuitive and easy to set up at both high or granular levels. Many users have praised the CMS for its ability to track assets and links when moved, deleted, or renamed, as well as its capability for allowing relational publishing of all affected assets.

Great Integration with Third-Party Products: The integration of Cascade Server with third-party products such as Google Analytics, SiteImprove, and WebDam is highly valued by users. They specifically mention the excellent customer service provided by Hannon Hill, the company behind Cascade Server.

Cons:

  1. Overwhelming and Challenging Interface: Many users have found Cascade CMS overwhelming and challenging to understand, especially without programming knowledge. The complex nature of the system makes it difficult for non-technical users to navigate and utilize effectively.
  2. Limitations with Images: Users have mentioned that Cascade CMS has limitations when it comes to working with images. Specifically, they find it challenging to save multiple versions of uploaded images and encounter difficulties in managing image-related tasks within the system.
  3. Complex Maintenance for Large Websites: Maintaining a large website can be difficult in Cascade Server due to its push architecture and the need to write a web services application for re-publishing template-specific pages. Users express frustration with these complexities, which make it time-consuming and labor-intensive to manage their websites efficiently.

Users commonly recommend purchasing consulting time from Hannon Hill to configure and set up Cascade CMS. They suggest considering WordPress for its ease of use and overall design, while acknowledging that Cascade CMS excels in revisions and file structure management. Additionally, users find Cascade CMS to be a powerful solution for enterprise-level content management, although it does require familiarity with Velocity templating language, XML, and structured content markup. They also highlight the ease of use for basic daily functions in Cascade CMS and praise Hannon Hill's customer support. Lastly, for users with advanced technical expertise, they suggest considering Drupal as an alternative option.

Attribute Ratings

Reviews

(1-25 of 44)
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Craig Campbell | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
  • The first phase of our Cascade experience brought our University's web users together, and united the look and feel of our pages. We are hoping our next phase will provide the tools necessary to transform the way we market ourselves on the web. More to come.
John Dezember | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Incentivized
  • Cascade CMS can be pricey for organizations with small web budgets—especially when comparing to free CMSs like WordPress or ExpressionEngine.
  • The cost is justified by the robust features, frequent updates, and top-notch support.
  • The Cascade CMS community is vibrant and full of very helpful members.
Andrew Bauserman | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
  • Prior to implementing Cascade CMS, the university had hundreds of sites with disparate designs maintained with a variety of tools. Since implementing Cascade CMS, the vast majority of sites are managed within a single system and have coordinated branding and designs.
  • Having a single enterprise CMS for the university affords us the opportunity to provide training and support across all divisions & departments of the university.
Cary Thomas, MBA CMA | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
  • Cascade Server provides Scripps Research with tremendous value. When we look at enterprise-scale products, and contrast that to our utility/cost ratio, we are very pleased with the product.
  • Perhaps less frequently cited by other reviewers, information security for Scripps Research is a top priority, and we have been comforted with the security profile of Cascade Server, especially when contrasted to other products that are "easily hacked".
  • Another factor that impacts our "ROI" is the Cascade community and the training opportunities for our staff both for seasoned users taking advantage of new features, as well as new users to learn the basics.
Score 1 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Incentivized
  • Initially, ROI was positive - because we completely redesigned the website when we implemented Cascade.
  • Over time, the inability to keep up with the latest interactive tools has reduced visitors time on site.
  • Also over time, the difficulty of use has led to less buy-in by backend users, leading to outdated pages, little timely information, and lower visitors.
September 16, 2016

Cascade Server is solid

Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Incentivized
  • Cascade Server is a cost saving solution for our organization, due to the fact that we are able to offer a tool that eliminates the need of hiring a technical team to build and maintain a website.
Mallory Rice | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Incentivized
  • Cascade Server had a very positive impact, because it was easy to switch permissions, easy to update, and that has made it very easy to keep our students and applicants updated on the goings-on.
  • Since it was easy to learn, it was easy to hit the ground running when I became the website manager, and became easy to teach others for when I went on vacation or was otherwise absent.
  • When a site-wide redo occurred, it was easy to switch things to the new format, including images and forms.
February 16, 2016

Cascade in California

Jeff Dillon | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Incentivized
  • Cascade Server has allowed our small web team to provide a more accessible campus web environment
  • Cascade has helped create a consistent brand by centralizing the family of campus templates.
  • Cascade has allowed us to more easily move to a responsive-mobile design making University content more available to our audiences.
Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
ResellerIncentivized
  • Cascade Server filled a major void for us: allowing non-technical customers to manage their own website, without having to rely on paying a developer. This allowed us to compete with other companies by having a value-add service that ultimately could save the customer money.
  • Cascade Server allowed our Digital Marketing team to easily manage their website optimization efforts without having to always utilize the development staff.
  • By having a well-known CMS, it allowed our company to introduce other services (hosting, digital marketing, IT support) as additional value.
Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Incentivized
  • Cascade Server has many features, such as quick pinpointing of pages, that allows our business to avoid any possible copyright issues immediately. When we notice any possible copyright infringement on our behalf, Cascade allows us to find the page in question in a matter of a seconds and remove the data that my tarnish the reputation of our business.
  • The training that we give to employees in Cascade is fast and efficient, due to the convenience of the software features themselves. This allows us to quickly train employees to use Cascade Server, which saves us valuable work time.
  • Cascade Server allows us to maintain a record of which employee has published edits to our webpage. If a mistake is made, the employee who is responsible can quickly be contacted to reverse the mistake. This is important since our business relies on a solid reputation with those authors contributing to our business.
Curtis Travers, MPH | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 7 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Incentivized
  • Improved connection with research participants
  • Allows ability to share files in a user friendly secure webpage
  • Customization to make your teams webpage your own and reflect the goals of your group
David Van Wie | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
  • Cascade has only impacted our organization in a positive way. We now have more engaged content managers, since they can more easily edit pages, and proof those change prior to publishing. Additionally, since there is no software to install, it runs smoothly across any platform.
Erik Espana | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Incentivized
  • Our biggest return has been in allowing us to transfer content maintenance tasks to other offices. This has freed up our marketing and communications staff to focus on strategic marketing goals.
  • While we have yet to fully embrace Spectate, an inbound marketing tool that accompanies Cascade Server, the ability to measure the ROI of our content has made a positive impact in how we strategize our content. We've experimented with A/B testing and conversion tracking so far.
  • CMS customization must be done by in-house developers or be out-sourced to a Cascade Server partner firm. While Hannon Hill has launched http://www.cascadeserverexchange.com, a "plugin" repository that provides code solutions to common business needs, a technical person is still required to customize the plugin based on each client's setup and the specific business requirements.
April 08, 2015

Power has a price

Score 3 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Incentivized
  • We have distributed content maintenance duties to other areas of the campus thus freeing up resources. With a userbase of primarily infrequent activity and lack of general technical competence the support needs are also high but we still come out ahead.
  • All development must be done in-house as opposed to a solution like WordPress with many plugins available. This has required us to spent much more time creating a solution to a problem that is easily already solved by a plugin in WordPress.
  • Because of user frustration and extended development needs our reputation has suffered.
March 19, 2015

Cascade Server Rocks!

William White | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Incentivized
  • Our marketing team has increased the amount and quality of content by making the content creation simpler and uniform coupled with better review and editorial processes.
  • ROI has been clearly demonstrated by the reduction in time to complete a full site redesign. We managed to cut our time well in half and produced a far superior website.
  • We utilize a third party vendor as well for some of our content. Cascade has allowed us to cut the time to print drastically by allowing the vendor to have content creation rights directly inside of Cascade and having an approval process that we control.
Josh LaMar | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Incentivized
  • We've moved some of our vulnerable sites to Cascade Server to satisfy our goal of reducing redundant systems and mitigating risk.
  • IU decided this is the CMS that will be supported and our users have been happy with the support we provide. In general we do not support any other CMS.
  • Our marketing department has retired most of their legacy servers/websites after moving to Cascade Server, saving time and money.
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