Functionality and ease of use are key factors in content management system purchases

Price and security are not considered important for a CMS.

The features offered and ease of use are what customers hold in highest regard when looking to purchase a content management system (CMS), but surprisingly, price and security are not considered particularly important factors, according to new findings released today.

The CMS buying poll, carried out by web design consultancy and CMS provider, Webcredible, revealed that the practical aspects of a CMS were by far the most important to potential buyers, with almost half of respondents identifying functionality/feature set (22 per cent) or ease of use (21 per cent) as the key factor in a purchase.

In addition, 16 per cent of respondents said that the ability to customise the functionality of a CMS was the key consideration when making a purchase, largely because customisation is identified as critical to longevity.

The research also revealed that despite the current price and online security-conscious environment, price and security were not seen as important in a CMS purchase with eight per cent and five per cent respectively, identifying them as the key factor.

With thousands of different CMS products available for both web and internal content and for businesses ranging from small to medium-sized to large enterprises, there are hundreds of brands active within the CMS marketplace.

However, the findings surprisingly revealed that brand name is a reasonably important consideration in a CMS purchase, with 13 per cent of respondents identifying it as the most important factor.

The research polled more than 1,000 online users between June and September 2009 on what would be the key factor in purchasing a content management system.

After features, ease of use, ability to customise and brand name, the license – whether open source or proprietary – was identified as the next most important consideration in a CMS purchase with nine per cent of respondents choosing this.

In addition, just one per cent of respondents identified the support on offer as the key factor and five per cent said that none of these would be the key factors when purchasing a CMS, citing factors such as working in all browsers, and providing correct HTML code as important.

Trenton Moss, Director at Webcredible comments, “The CMS market is one that crosses numerous sectors and business sizes and it seems that because of this diverse target market, the practical aspects of a product are crucial. The features on offer and the ease of use of a CMS are the most important considerations largely because the features are key to fulfilling user needs and an easy to use product can be used by somebody who is not particularly technically minded, which may be needed particularly in smaller businesses.

It is however, surprising that price and security are not considered particularly important with a CMS, especially in a time where many companies budgets are being squeezed and online vulnerabilities and attacks are still rife.”

This CMS buying research polled 1,021 visitors to the Webcredible website between June and September 2009.