The 5 Agile Content Management System Trends Reshaping the Digital Landscape

In 2019, 85% of executives went to sleep at night with the view that digital was a nice-to-have, according to senior analyst Nick Barber, author of The Forrester Wave: Agile Content Management Systems Q1 2021.

Now, at the one-year anniversary of the global lockdown, we know better: in 2020, if your business wasn’t digital, you couldn’t compete. Simply put, digital agility was the difference between success and failure.

And, Nick predicts, we’re not switching back. Consumers will continue to order groceries, buy gifts, make bank deposits online, far after the pandemic is over. In this climate, agile content management has emerged as one of the most critical capabilities for businesses to deliver a meaningful customer experience.

In fact, Forrester calculates 30% of companies are looking to replatform their CMS to deliver a better digital experience.

In Nick’s analysis of the content management landscape, he identified five trends that separate agile content management solutions from their outdated counterparts. They’re below and also highlighted in our recent webinar How Agile Content Management is Reshaping the Digital Landscape.

1. Demand for an enterprise content hub

A content hub is a data store that centralizes all of an organization’s content in a single repository, providing the flexibility to create once, publish everywhere. Via APIs, it can also separate, or decouple, the editorial experience from the customer-facing technology where all the content is displayed.

Additionally, content hubs provide adaptability for technology teams to iterate on the end-user experience without impacting the editorial workflow. It’s a one-stop-shop for both practitioners and developers, which drives efficiency across the content lifecycle. A content hub can take many different forms, and one of the most popular is digital asset management, or DAM.

2. Emergence of collaboration and planning tools

Content is now a core business capability, so a modern CMS must facilitate cross-functional collaboration. Organizations need dedicated tools with intuitive workflows to take the heavy lifting out of creating, managing, and delivering content. Unlike the previous emphasis on decoupled, or headless, CMS, the best new agile content management solutions bring developers and creatives together on a single platform.

3. Rise of omnichannel content experiences

“Omnichannel is the rule rather than the exception,” explained Nick in our webinar. Agile content management systems are all about embracing the reuse of content across multiple channels and devices.

Fifteen years ago, organizations focused on delivering content via their website. Next came the creation of mobile applications. Now, channel delivery is exponentially more complex. Think voice assistants, connected cars, digital signage, points of sale. And each touchpoint requires thoughtful content to engage consumers and deliver a delightful customer experience.

The upshot? It doesn’t make sense anymore to create channel-specific content. To keep pace, business leaders must upgrade their content platform (and delivery) to think omnichannel-first.

4. Need for flexible deployment options

It’s no surprise that flexibility and extensibility are two hallmarks of a successful CMS. Both front-end components and back-end architecture in an agile content management system must be customizable to serve an organization’s unique needs.

And because the digital landscape is ever-changing, this flexibility needs to be supported by extensive documentation, training, and community to empower practitioners and developers to leverage their tools to bring a brand vision to life.

5. Hunger for analytics that drive business insights

Content drives growth, and there is no better way to prove its business impact than to measure it and continually improve it. But how do you prove the ROI of content and commerce experiences, beyond simply measuring clicks?

Content analytics is one side of the equation: a deep dive into real-time data will exponentially improve the business impact of content over time. Equally important is an analysis of the upstream content creation process. An agile content management system allows organizations to study and optimize content delivery to create faster speed to value.

The takeaway: A modern agile content management system

Agile CMS is a new model for all content and all users—making it easier than ever to create, deliver, and measure content to fuel enterprise growth.

For a deeper understanding of the market opportunity of agile content management systems, watch our on-demand webinar, How Agile CMS is Reshaping the Digital Experience Landscape.

If you’re evaluating agile content management systems, you can also download Nick Barber’s full report, The Forrester Wave: Agile CMSes Q1 2021. You’ll understand the capabilities of 15 agile content management offerings on the market, and how WordPress VIP can meet your needs.

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