Content Management Systems: The History and the Future

Content Management Systems (CMS) are any method of organizing electronic information. With the rise of the Internet, the phrase was adopted as a whole to describe a wide range of systems that allowed users to create, edit, manage, and publish website content.

Although in the early 1990s people could update some form of online content with Microsoft and Lotus products, the first example of a pure content management tool came from Vignette with StoryServer around 1996. they released many CMS packages. from the likes of Documentum, Interwoven and Broadvision.

Between 2000 and 2005, the industry went through a massive wave of mergers and acquisitions that left a number of users without support after packages were abandoned, and difficulties arose as packages were merged.

By 2007 there were 3 types of Content Management System:

1) Software Edition

These systems deal with editing on a local machine or network and then rely on publishing to upload the new content to the website. Typically, these offline systems require software to be installed before editing can take place.

2) Online Edition

These systems typically do not require software to be installed, giving you the flexibility to edit on any machine, as long as the user has password access. Online content management systems can be very simple, like Wiki, to sophisticated CMS editor features, like Vx.

3) Hybrid Systems

Hybrid systems allow users to edit content online through an online editing system, but allow “verified” content to work outside of the system before the content is put back into the online editor.

2008 and the future…

Content management systems have become extremely sophisticated, allowing users to manage and manipulate text, images, documents, audio, video, and animations.

New developments have taken the concepts behind content management systems (non-technical or design staff managing your websites) to other fields of the marketing mix. Several systems have integrated email marketing functionality into their CMS, allowing for tracking between email and website functions.

Cutting-edge systems have started to bring the offline to the content management platform. Printed materials, PDFs, and other offline communications are now managed through CMS systems in a similar way to websites and emails.