Popular Content Management Systems
Blogger is not really a CMS, it’s more of a Blogging platform owned by Google – but it does have a substantial following and websites using Blogger are popping up all over the place. There are some great templates and gadgets available. Its use is limited and the fact that it’s a ‘closed’ system and it’s hosted on their server makes Blogger very inflexible.
DNN is a CMS based on the Microsoft Technology stack and has a great 'drag-and-drop' user-friendly Administration interface. It has a big following, mainly due to aggressive marketing by the company rather than natural developer choice. DNN now has two commercial editions besides its open-source version and it will be interesting to see if the good scripts remain open-source or migrate to ‘available with licensed version only’ in the near future.
A favourite with developers, this CMS has a lot going for it and is ranked #3 behind WordPress and Magento for popularity. The Administration and Editing interface takes a little while to figure out and there is a learning curve – finding items can be difficult at first. It has plenty of Plug-ins and Templates and is pretty flexible.
Built around CodeIgniter, an open-source PHP framework – this CMS is expandable and versatile with some powerful features. It doesn’t have a large amount of themes or add-on modules readily available, but those it does have, are ‘quality’ in the main. Needs a healthier developer contribution community.
Not sure why this CMS is ranked #4 for popularity, pretty much a developers nightmare. It does have a neat graphical user interface for administration to be fair, although trying to find your way around is another matter. Looks user friendly – but actually isn’t. On the plus side, there are some neat contributions and it can be quite powerful if you rewrite the core files … which sort of defeats the object we think.
Magento has gone the way DNN appears to be going unfortunately, a great product which started its days as open-source, but, now comes in two flavours – one of which is commercial of course and can get expensive (so only really viable for medium-large companies). The free version is limited and code-heavy, which could lead to performance problems if you do not have a robust server.
Constructed with modularity in mind, this open-source content management system is supported with thousands of scripts and can easily produce large content-rich sites. It is not the easiest CMS to install or manage however and can be heavy on resources due to size and an extremely comprehensive/robust file structure. Maybe a bit over-kill for some applications.
vBulletin is a commercial platform with which you can create fantastic community websites. An extremely powerful, application-specific software which is tuned into a growing market. This CMS is expensive to license and so has limited usage due to cost and lack of flexibility.
WordPress has evolved from being just blogging software into a neat, flexible Content Management System. It has an excellent developer following and there are plenty of contributions to choose from, unfortunately not all good – so be careful. The Administration and Editing interface is very user friendly, making this CMS extremely popular.
Zen Cart prefer their software to be categorised as being ‘Shopping Cart Software’. Fine – still a quality CMS in our books though. Not very user friendly to be honest, however, the core files are nicely laid out and accessible for modification - you really can do almost anything with it. Perfect for building bespoke systems and probably the best for ecommerce websites.