4 Reasons Agencies Need A CMS For Client Projects

November 14, 2016

By Nick Raushenbush

If you’re an agency working on a web development project, it’s a good idea to have some kind of a Content Management System (CMS) integrated into your client’s website. A good CMS will help reduce costs and time on your end, and ultimately provide a better experience to your client.

While, some agencies hesitate to integrate a CMS — holding onto the power of control that they have over less tech savvy clients — this strategy doesn’t tend to play well in the long run. Without a CMS, all edits to existing pages, and creation of new pages, will have to be made by the agency, a contractor, or someone who knows how to code. When your agency has the bandwidth to take on the work, and when your client has the budget, this is great, but it’s not always the case.

Let’s take a deeper look at the major benefits to integrating a CMS into your client’s site.

1. Reduces internal developer and designer costs

Coding by hand can be time consuming, and developer time isn’t exactly the cheapest hourly labor for agencies. If you’re paying a developer $50 to $250 per hour for coding, every block of 15 minutes is an investment.

By integrating a CMS and page builder like Shogun, you can turn over easy tasks — like changing images, text, page section order, colors, and other styling — to less expensive team members, such as marketers, account managers, and even admin.

Some CMS allow for pretty powerful page building, making new page creation easy for designers, or those with an eye for webpage design, allowing non-technical agency team members to create great looking sites from scratch.

2. Decreases turnaround time for website changes

The mantra in the agency world has always been, “the client wanted it done yesterday.” When developer bandwidth tightens, it can be hard to get to all of the small requests coming from your portfolio in a timely manner.

Using a CMS provides two options here:

1. Any team member who has the bandwidth can jump in the CMS, and make the change for the client.

2. Integrate a CMS and share permissions with the client, so their initiatives aren’t held hostage by your schedule.

If you are using a CMS or page builder that is pretty easy to navigate, you can even outsource the small tasks to customer support specialists, via a marketplace like UpWork. Develop a system for creating “tickets” to address client changes, and make sure to agree on a pre-set turnaround time with both your client, and your outsourced team.

3. Promotes collaboration and client satisfaction

If a client knows what they are doing, they are probably already asking you about options for a CMS or page editor for their site. After all, most clients don’t want to be beholden to a single agency or developer indefinitely, and many clients don’t know how to write code.

By integrating a CMS, you reassure them that the site will be under their full ownership and control at some point. When clients feel comfortable that they can go in and make changes at their convenience, it increases their satisfaction with the agency/developer dynamic. Since word of mouth and client referrals are imperative to an agency’s success, it’s important to consider the relationship once the engagement is finished.

During the project, a CMS can increase communication and collaboration, by allowing clients to go in and write their own copy, add images, and inject other content into the system, before publishing. The agency can then enter the system, refine their content and design, and publish the changes and pages.

4. Makes client “off-boarding” easy when the project is done

Eventually, all agency or contracted developer relationships come to an end. Sometimes this is planned for, sometimes it comes at the request of the client, and sometimes you have to break up with problem clients. Regardless of the reason, it’s in everyone’s best interest to have a smooth transition in which the agency or developer provides all of the assets that their client paid for.

When a client faces a problem or initiative that requires greater expertise, CMS can also help reignite the relationship with their previous agency or developer. Some page creation will require custom templates, which requires a developer to go in and write HTML, CSS, or JavaScript to get the desired effect. Often times, client’s will simply run out of bandwidth themselves, and re-engaging with their agency can be an easy choice.

Help your clients, help yourself

Ultimately, Content Management Systems and page builders/editors are in the best interest of both agencies/developers and their clients. They save money and time on both sides, and help streamline efficiency.

If you’re a developer or an agency, have a conversation about CMS with your clients, and try enjoy a risk-free, complimentary trial of Shogun’s drag and drop page builder and content management system. We also have a seamless integration with Shopify, and you can check out the Shogun Shopify App for ecommerce stores.

About the Author

Nick Raushenbush is the co-founder of Shogun, a drag and drop page builder and editor for any website. 

Before moving into tech, Nick co-found and ran creative agency Glass & Marker, and made online video content for tech companies like Google and Yahoo!, and startups launching out of Y-Combinator.

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