The 10 Top Content Management Systems (CMS) for Small Businesses in 2021

Whether you're strictly managing content or wearing multiple marketing hats, you'll need good content management system software. With the right CMS, you can not only publish pieces but also create a user-friendly experience and manage the lifecycle of your audience. Each CMS is different, but each also brings something uniquely specialized to your requirements.

Top Rated

Weebly

Weebly continues to attract and keep loyal users thanks to its user-friendly design and constant upgrades.

Best for SMBs

Squarespace

Squarespace is a website builder that prioritizes professional looking pages and efficient publishing.

Easiest to Use

Wix

A drag-and-drop site builder, Wix is an intuitive yet customizable CMS option for those with a tight budget.

Best Features

WordPress.com

WordPress.com is the world's most popular website builder due to its features and capacity for customization. The Blueprint covers its pros and cons, so you can decide if it's your best choice.

Best Support

HubSpot CMS

HubSpot CMS is an excellent tool for marketers and content-focused web pages, with some unique limitations.

We may receive compensation from partners and advertisers whose products appear here. Compensation may impact where products are placed on our site, but editorial opinions, scores, and reviews are independent from, and never influenced by, any advertiser or partner.

A good marketing system and a good automation system may seem like very different things, but the right CMS is both of those at once.

Taking the pressure off the old ‘jack-of-all-trades, master-of-none’ approach, content management system software effectively manages all aspects for you so that your site can be the best it can be.

When you embrace the efficiency of a CMS, you are free to focus on other areas, assured of the machine-learning precision of a website and content portfolio that delivers.

With so many options out there to choose from, we’ve curated our top picks of CMS software, options that meet myriad needs and budgets, while still delivering a high-quality and user-friendly system.

Our top picks for the best CMS Software:

View all Products

Top Rated

1. Weebly

   

2. GoDaddy Website Builder

   
Easiest to Use

3. Wix

   
Best Features

4. WordPress.com

   

5. Kentico

   

6. WordPress

   

7. Bolt CMS

   
Best Support

8. HubSpot CMS

   
Best Training

9. Magnolia

   
Best for SMBs

10. Squarespace

   

View all Products


What The Blueprint looks for in a great CMS solution

A great CMS has a few non-negotiable features: it’s accessible, easy to collaborate, support-friendly, customizable, organized, search engine-optimized and metrics-ready. We look for these characteristics in each system.

How SEO-friendly is it?

You can’t have a successful business without an online presence anymore, for the most part. And the way to an online presence is visibility. If you can’t be found quickly on a search engine, you don’t carry as much weight or professional appeal. And the algorithms that can help you rank are impossible to figure out without AI and computer coding.

A good CMS is one that is SEO-ready for you. It optimizes your pages, gives insight into keywords, and directs the necessary backlinks/coding, so you will have maximum visibility.

Is the content easily customizable and professional looking?

A good site should look professional. Gone are the days of GeoCities and AngelFire looking cool. Your website needs to be sleek and knowledgeable.

And, since each type of business requires different things, the ability to customize is a must. An e-commerce site looks different than a restaurant website which looks different than a portfolio site and so on.

How is support?

If you’re a marketer or business owner, you’re most likely not a coder. And when it comes to technology, bugs are bound to pop up, and things are bound to go wrong.

When that happens, you can’t figure them out on your own, without possibly making them worse, so good and knowledgeable support is a must to keep your site functioning.

What is the pricing - what value do you get for your dollar?

There’s no way around it — money matters. Whether you are working on your own or within an organization, you’ll have a budget.

Of course, low cost is valued, but you also must take into consideration the value you get for your spend.

If a system is free, it still should work well. And if it’s expensive, you should be getting all the bells and whistles.

Is it user-friendly?

There’s nothing harder for a creative or a business manager than being thrust into a technological nightmare.

At the end of the day, you just want the easiest path to getting your content published. A good CMS shouldn’t make you waste your time wading through unnecessary steps and overly complicated processes.


How your business can benefit from using a content management system

With so many moving parts and so much content out there to publish, a business is only as good as its efficiency and reliability. That’s where a CMS is a lifesaver.

Stay updated without the hassle

The beauty of using a CMS is that it is built for automatic upgrades and updates. You don’t need to worry about researching when security updates come out, or manually coding in new upgrades. A good CMS handles all that for you, automatically.

Easy and secure collaborations

You can have as many cooks as you need, without them messing up the kitchen.

With a CMS, you can allow others just what access they need, and nothing more. Meaning you can have guest authors or teammates publish as needed, without giving them your login info or control of your site.

SEO-friendly out of the box

Rather than hope you’re hitting the right notes to rank in the search engines, CMS software usually is SEO-friendly out of the box, or with the help of an easy plug-in. You can rest easy, knowing your content is optimized.

Track audience behavior

Data is power. You’ll only grow a business or an audience if you can have insight into audience behavior.

Content management software comes with dashboards and reporting features that let you see what content performs best, allowing you to tweak content for different demographics.

Don’t feel technically and technologically overwhelmed

CMS software already does the tech part for you, so you can feel confident using it as a non-coder. Layman’s terms abound for the regular folk among us.

No computer science background? No problem. Content management systems are designed to be as user-friendly as possible so you can focus on getting your work out there.

Manage from anywhere

Thanks to web platforms, all you need is a username, password, and an internet connection to manage your site.

Most content management systems allow you the freedom of managing and updating from a desktop, an app, or a mobile platform, so you can stay on top of things from wherever you are. The software takes care of syncing, so your site is always updated.


Content Management System Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need a new web server?

A content management system integrates with your existing site, so you won’t need to host your own. If you are building a website from scratch, you can often host directly through the CMS itself.

Can I customize domain names through my CMS?

For free trials and free versions, you’re generally stuck with the CMS-based domain name. However, once you pay to host, you are allowed your own custom domain name to set your site apart.

Can you multitask on a CMS?

Any good website these days is more than one simple page or function. Any CMS you use should be able to support multiple capabilities and tasks.

The Motley Fool has a Disclosure Policy. The Author and/or The Motley Fool may have an interest in companies mentioned.