The Blogware Vs. CMS Issue: What Fits You?

04 November 2009, by A. Cedilla

On-line communication today is everywhere: we have journals, f-lists, forums, blogs, social networking sites…the ways we keep in touch with one another are many, and the choice of tools we use to do so can be bewildering.

For example, if you want a simple blog of your own there are dozens of free web-based blogging applications you can sign up with, and BAM! You have your blog. Then later on, if you wish to establish a stronger web presence, you can transition to a more robust content management system

But what if you want to save time from the get-go?

Sure, you may just want a blog for now, but what if the time comes you want something with more robust features? At this point, you may want to check out our 2 part article about CMS here and here.

Basically, here are two main types of applications currently available that are used for blogging: blog software and Content Management Systems (CMS). The main difference is that a CMS has more features than blog applications, while being capable of doing everything blogware does.

If your goal is to simply publish day-to-day content online, stick with a blog. For dabblers, hobbyists and beginners, a basic blog answers your needs better than any CMS.

You don’t need any extras, or in-depth programming or coding skills, to do it — just typing skills and a way of capturing your ideas before you commit them to paper–or in this case, on-line. With blogging applications like Google’s Blogger, WordPress and Typepad, you can get your blog up and running in no time.

When picking which blogging system to use, picture what you need and want for your blog, and use those criteria to determine which service you’ll go with.

Some of the best blogging systems have both free and paid services, good customer support, and offer free templates, so you don’t really need to shell out money to establish your blog.

If you want to be able to expand your blog into a more powerful internet presence, go with a CMS.

A basic CMS can do everything the average blog can do and go beyond that. With some PHP and SQL coding skills, most CMS’s allow users to manage their systems and create add-ons, modules and hacks easily.

What’s more, if you intend to grow your blog into an online, money-making resource, you should know that companies and organizations use CMS’s to run their websites, they’re that powerful and features-inclusive.

To start you up: Joomla is quite user-friendly from the get-go, while Drupal, with a bit more diligent study to see what it can do (the Drupal forums are composed of people with a more-than-average know-how of technical skills)can also do a lot for you. And, they’re both free.

The bottom-line here is that a no-frills blog that act as your daily online journal needs nothing beyond that which a regular blog can give you. For those with more requirements and an eye towards expansion, a CMS is much better fit.

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