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Should I Use a Headless CMS?

If you’re a business owner with an online presence, it’s important that you have at least a basic tech understanding of how your website operates. Doing so means you will be able to readily identify issues and areas for improvement.

Your current website was most likely built using a CMS platform. It probably functions perfectly now, but have you thought about how it will look and feel in ten years time? What if technology progresses to a point where the site not only looks outdated, but doesn’t function correctly?

This kind of conundrum is why many Kentico developers in Melbourne are promoting the use of headless CMS platforms. Not sure what that means? Read on to find out and discover whether a headless CMS is the right choice for you.

What is a CMS?

A CMS is a type of software designed to make website development simpler and more efficient.

Without a CMS — or content management system — developers are left with the task of building a website from scratch using code. You might think all websites are built this way, but this couldn’t be further from the truth.

Some of the world’s biggest and more well-known websites have been developed from a CMS platform, be it WordPress, Drupal, or Kentico.

Using a CMS makes creating, uploading, modifying, and removing content from your website incredibly easy. CMS platforms also offer a wide range of customisable designs and templates, meaning that your website will still look unique and reflect your business and brand.

CMS platforms have been around for decades now and don’t look likely to disappear any time soon.

What makes it headless?

Now that we’ve established what a CMS platform is, it’s time to turn our attention to the headless variety. To truly understand what a headless CMS is, you first have to have some knowledge about how a CMS platform works.

A standard CMS — say, WordPress, for example — is made up of two separate components. These can be broadly categorised as the front-end and the back-end. The back-end is also known as the content management application, or CMA. The CMA is where the website owner is able to upload new content, change the structure of their webpage, or add new extensions. Doing all of these tasks does not require in-depth tech knowledge; the advantage of using a CMS is that the user interface is incredibly friendly. Depending on the CMS you are using, you can essentially just drag and drop your page elements where you want them to go.

Once you have made all your changes, the front-end — also known as the content delivery application, or CDA — publishes your new content for your users to view and interact with.

It’s that simple! For a long time, this is how the majority of websites have operated. However, changes in technology have meant that developers and website owners are now looking for new methods of creating, storing, and publishing content — methods that are likely to stand the test of time.

Enter the headless CMS. The easiest way to describe a headless CMS is that it is a regular CMS platform without the front-end — the head! A headless CMS contains a content repository, where website owners can make and store their valuable content, be it blog posts, videos or images. Instead of a front-end (or a CDA), the headless CMS has the ability to connect to any number of different APIs (application programming interface). What this means is that your content will be able to be accessed on any type of device, from a regular laptop to a virtual voice assistant.

This might seem like a slightly complicated concept. All you need to know is that headless CMS’ are considered by many developers to be the tech of the future.

Popular headless CMS options

You might be wondering; do I know of any headless CMS platforms? How popular and prevalent is this technology?

While it’s true that traditional CMS software still dominates the market, there are an increasing number of tech companies that are investing in developing headless varieties of their popular platforms.

If you are considering using a headless CMS, you might benefit from researching the following options:

● Kentico Kontent
● Contentful
● Sitecore

Should I use a headless CMS?

If you are someone who naturally likes to get ahead of the curve, you might be already researching your headless CMS options, well on the way to finding a Kentico developer in Melbourne who can ‘cut the head’ off your current site. Hold fast! A headless CMS platform is not for everyone.

If you run a pretty standard blog with minimal special features or extensions, which is usually only accessed on a laptop, computer, or smartphone, there is no need for you to upgrade your site. Traditional CMS platforms will still be around for decades to come.

If, on the other hand, you operate a complex website and believe your clients are likely to be the type to access your website from any number of different platforms (smartwatches, virtual assistants, VR headsets, to name but a few), it could be worth investigating your headless CMS options.

If you are not sure whether your business could benefit from a headless CMS, it is best to speak to a professional Kentico developer in Melbourne. They will be able to look at your existing digital assets and client base to give an informed recommendation.

One thing is for sure, technology is constantly evolving. The websites of today will look positively ancient a decade from now, providing that innovation is always worth investing in.

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