A CMS platform gives you tools to manage the content on your website, its appearance, and many other things you might need to keep your website up to date. But which are the better CMS platforms out there for different needs in website design and web development? In this article, we’ll go through the highlights of those we consider to be the top twelve CMS platforms for 2019 and the upcoming year. We’ll advise you on which is better for you depending on the web development skills of those who’ll be using it, your website’s goals, and many other circumstances that might at play during your web development process. So, on to the list!
Did you know that one-third of all websites around are built on WordPress? If not, you’ll figure out why in a minute. WordPress.org started out to be a blogging platform, but these days it has grown into a full-blown CMS useful for any kind of project. We usually use Magento to integrate larger e-commerce solutions, these tend to be stores with over 2,500 products. For smaller sized shops we would go for WordPress with the free to use WooCommerce plugin. There are all sorts of plugins you can install on WordPress websites to make them have all the functions you need, so the installing process is pretty straightforward and user-friendly. If you’re looking for an even easier way to develop a blog or website, you can always count on WordPress.com.
WordPress.com keeps most of the more advanced features for Premium users, but it’s a lot easier to navigate if you haven’t ever used a CMS platform before. If you prefer to pay and have the platform do all the hard work for you, WordPress.com is the best option you’ve got out there. It’s meant to be even more user-friendly than its .org version, so you should have no issues using it to create any website. Keep in mind that if you want some free CMS solution, WordPress.org might be better for you: with WordPress.com, the free version won’t get you very far, but if you just want to create a blog for your company, it should suit you alright.
Now if you’re an advanced user, Drupal should be well-known for you. For high-traffic websites, this is the best solution out there, close to WordPress.org when it comes to the number of users worldwide. Being open-source, you’ll have to host it using PHP on an Apache server, which makes it more difficult to implement than the other options we mentioned previously. For enterprise platforms, Drupal is the more suitable option, being able to withstand a large amount of traffic and having plenty of customisation available through thousands of modules available. You don’t even need to know how to code, being able to use one of the over two thousand themes available to build your custom solution.
This one is widely considered to be the best CMS for bloggers. You can either pay for the Pro version and just get it set up instantaneously or host it in your server if the requirements for it are met. It is quite clean-looking, but don’t be fooled – it’s a lot more work to set it up if you don’t choose the Pro version (in comparison to WordPress). Ghost’s “integrations” work as plugins on WordPress, allowing you to set up many options like e-commerce, newsletters and many other features.
Made for small websites, Grav uses flat-file architecture, which means you don’t need to create a database on MySQL or anything similar to use it. Your whole website can be stored in a single file on your server. This makes it quite easy to install and to create backups for, however, if you’re thinking about using it for a bigger project, forget about it. Grav is lightweight for a reason – you can’t build huge websites using it without realising its shortcomings. However, for simpler websites, Grav should be enough and much easier to set up than WordPress.
Prestashop is a great CMS tool if you want an easy to set up e-commerce solution. If can be used at your store as an invoicing platform as well, so you’ll have all your sales connected with your stock data. You can choose the theme for your online store, but Prestashop is supposed to be simple so don’t expect to be able to code many changes to your online shop. However, it’s still a pretty good solution if you want a hassle-free e-commerce solution.
Shopify is arguably the most widely known option for adding an online store to your website. Boasting over a million clients worldwide, Shopify is a good solution for medium to large-sized e-commerce shops. It provides themes that are both customisable and responsive, however, if you’re looking for an option in which you can code your way through it, Shopify is not your best option. Most things on Shopify are ready-made and suit many different needs, however, if you need a bespoke solution, it might not be your option.
Once again talking about e-commerce, Magento might not have the same amount of clients as Shopify, but it’s more suitable for products and services that need a bit of tinkering about to be integrated into an online shop. If you have a shop with over two thousand five hundred items, you’ll probably need Magento. It allows you to have a larger database and to customise further than Shopify while allowing for extensions that make your life easier as an e-commerce manager.
If customisation does not matter much to you and you just want your website set up quickly and easily, Wix might be what you’re looking for. This CMS platform comes with plenty of templates that will make any entry-level user happy while making the web development process incredibly easy. However, don’t expect to be able to do with Wix the same you could be doing with a CMS like WordPress – Wix is an entry-level solution like we mentioned, so don’t expect a lot of customisation.
If the perspective of coding to create a new website is daunting for you but you don’t want a cookie-cutter like website, Webflow might be your best bet. Webflow not only offers the CMS but also provides hosting, which makes it a lot easier if you need a website done quickly but don’t want to miss out on customisation. It is also responsive, which is highly important in an age in which mobile searches make up for more than half of the total web traffic. Webflow also provides you with a lot of research material that can be helpful in creating the perfect website for you.
Squarespace is an all-in-one solution if you’re looking for a beautiful website. With hosting, plenty of templates to choose from, and custom domains with zero hassle, you can adjust your website to your needs without needing to go the extra mile. It also includes blogging spaces, SEO tools and much more in a single CMS platform, so Squarespace enters this list as one of our favourites for creating a website in a fast and effective manner.
This is our rundown of twelve CMS platforms for 2019 and 2020 that will probably withstand the test of time. Some are older, some are more recent. No matter what, you’ll find a solution for you on this list – it all comes down to your needs for your website and your team’s coding skills. There’s a bit for everyone on this list, so just pick your favourite and you should be all set. Ready?
Not sure which platform is most suited to your business? Then get in touch with our team and we’ll be happy to assist you with your next project.