Tony Spiro

@tonyspiro

5 Reasons to Convince Your Client to Use a Cloud-Based CMS

It will be amazing. Promise.

Coming from the digital agency world, I know what it’s like to hear from a client “We want to use installed CMS X” only to shutter from the thought of starting that process ALL.OVER.AGAIN. There are many pitfalls and headaches that come with any installed CMS, no matter which system is preferred. Here are the 5 reasons you can use to convince your client to ditch their “preferred” CMS and go cloud-first and into the future.

Speed up Development, Save Time and Money
Let the client know that going API-first using a cloud-based CMS will speed up development time. By not having to install, configure, customize the CMS itself and focusing on building the actual website or app, the project timeline will be sped up, lowering costs dramatically.

Language Agnostic
As a developer, what language do you like to use? Is it PHP? Is it Python? When using a cloud-based CMS, you don’t have to make compromises on your programming language. You don’t have to fumble through server-side code to get your job done. Let your client know that whatever application they want built can consume the content via API. This flexibility of content delivery and speed of development will get the content to more people, faster giving their business a competitive edge. Plus in the future, new developer hires don’t need to be proficient in a certain programming language to build apps that consume the content.

Ready for the Future
Along with development time being faster and giving the developer more freedom for implementation, going API-first also allows the business more flexibility for future implementations. Do we want to eventually redo the site in Node.js, Go, or $%@#^.js? Or do you eventually want to go native with iOS and Android apps? It won’t be a concern because the content will be available via a service that doesn’t care what the final application is built on. This makes your content future-proof saving you more time in the future by not having to redo a CMS installation to satisfy fluctuations in technology trends.

Eliminate Technical Debt
Ever had to put out fires from an installed CMS because of incompatibility with installed plugins or changes in server versions? I have! And let me tell you, it’s completely avoidable. Let your client know that installed CMS systems have lots of moving parts that all degrade over time. Using an cloud-based service to host your content ensures that your content will always be available. It’s the promise of the service, just like AWS or Digital Ocean has made a promise to keep your hosting server up allowing you to never worry about maintaining physical server hardware.

Better Collaboration
Finally, as you begin to think of the difference between an installed CMS and a cloud-based CMS, consider all of the people that are currently on your team and the people that you may add later. If you have a copywriter, using an API-first CMS, they will be able to go into the system prior to development to add content. Since an API-first CMS doesn’t require a developer to setup the database and install the plugins required, a non-technical person can immediately begin adding content while the application is being built. With a native app developer, they will be able to consume the same API that the web and other applications use. This not only speeds up the development cycle, but it also allows for greater collaboration and a faster feedback loop for content implications on design. If you’ve ever switched out Lorem Ipsum for actual content only to see the design destroyed, you know what I’m talking about!

Conclusion

I hope these reasons are enough to convince your client to go API-first. The client / developer relationship is dependent on good communication. Now’s the time to educate your client to let them know that going API-first now will save them many headaches later!

Reach out to me on Twitter if you have any questions. If you think I left any reasons out, let me know in the comments below.

Tony Spiro is the CEO and Co-Founder of Cosmic JS, API-first CMS for building content-powered apps.

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