Content management system

A content management system (CMS) is a software application or set of related programs that are used to create and manage digital content. 

Features of a CMS

Features can vary amongst the various CMS offerings, but the core functions are often considered to be indexing, search and retrieval, format management, revision control and publishing.

  • Intuitive indexing, search and retrieval features index all data for easy access through search functions and allows users to search by attributes such as publication dates, keywords or author.
  • Format management facilitates turn scanned paper documents and legacy electronic documents into HTML or PDF documents.
  • Revision features allow content to be updated and edited after initial publication. Revision control also tracks any changes made to files by individuals.
  • Publishing functionality allows individuals to use a template or a set of templates approved by the organisation, as well as wizards and other tools to create or modify content.

CMS software vendors

WordPress – A free and open source WCMS based on PHP and MySQL. WordPress can be utilised as part of an internet hosting service (, or it can be deployed on a local computer to act as its own web server ( It is immensely popular amongst the blogging community and is the most widely used CMS in the world today. 

Joomla – Another free and open source WCMS built on an MVC framework. Joomla is written in PHP and offers features such as cachingRSS feeds, blogs, search and support for language internationalisation.

SharePoint – A collection of cloud- and web-based technologies that make it easy to store, share and manage digital information within an organisation.

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