2010 has been the year web content management 1.0 officially and finally died. And with its death came a lot of changes for the industry. But what will 2011 bring? Even more changes,many that will bring us all back to the basics.
With 2010 winding to a close it’s time to look forward to 2011. 2011 will be a watershed year for web content management. Certainly we will see mobile publishing become the #1 trend, but perhaps more importantly we will see mobile experiences change people’s web expectations. 2011 will be the year that brochure-ware finally dies. People now expect app-like experiences wherever they consume content. The web will have to follow suit to meet customer expectations.
Living in a device-centric world also changes content deployment. With the plethora of mobile devices, web browsers and advent of tablets, web publishers will need smarter content deployment tools. Features like Target Groups, Transformation Engines and User Agent (or better yet, “capabilities”) detection will become key requirements for CMS buyers. With better targeting also comes the need for better content structure. Will 2011 be the year the content “BLOB” dies as well?
Despite the rise in complexity for web publishing, I predict 2011 will be a back-to-basics year for content management. In the past few years CMS vendors have broadened their applications with hyped solutions for marketing automation, email marketing, e-commerce and everything under the sun. What vendors will discover is that most enterprise buyers already have solutions to manage their email and marketing automation and these categories are valuable and complex enough to merit their own solutions.
Eloqua, Marketo, Exact Target and other vendors have a footprint in the market for a reason. Best of breed point solutions are far more capable of delivering value in their fields compared to a Web CMS add-on. Web CMS may the glue that holds Web Experience together, but it does not need to be the end-to-end solution. To support customer needs, we will see more CMS App Store-type solutions to manage third party integrations and solutions. 2011 may be the year of the web experience management ecosystem.
With so many changes afoot it is hard to keep my predictions down to ten, but ten it is; so without further adieus here are my…
Top 10 Predictions for Web CMS in 2011
1. Mobile Will Accelerate Web Content Management Adoption
The growth of mobile will be a huge boon for the Web CMS industry. Site publishers will look to upgrade their Web CMS software to meet the demands of mobile users. Organizations looking to get by on last generation or home grown technology will find they cannot keep pace on yesterday's CMS and turn to more agile Web CMS solutions to support write once, multi-channel deployments.
2. Deployment will be King
In 2011 deployment will skyrocket to become the key feature in a Web CMS. Web publishers need the ability to target and transform content for devices. Vendors will put more intelligence in the delivery tier to detect devices, browsers, viewports and in some cases device capabilities.
Browser fragmentation will also change content deployment strategy: Chrome, Firefox, Rockmelt, Skyfire, Bold, Teashark, Blazer, Safari…There are now too many browsers to get by on “IE Hacks” to support cross-browser publishing. The challenge in 2011 will be developing better content deployment and targeting tools while keeping the software easy-to-use for web developers and site managers.
3. Structured Content will be Queen
Part and parcel to content deployment is having content in a format where it is ready to be deployed. You cannot support an elegant deployment strategy when your content is stored in blobs of unstructured text and images. CMS buyers will look for solutions that support true content structuring to create, manage and deliver information in well formed schemas.
4. Mobile Pushes Adoption of HTML5
Mobile will also push adoption of HTML 5. On PC’s Internet Explorer and older browsers are not ready for HTML 5. On the mobile web over 90% of smart phones are HTML5 ready now. Sencha, PhoneGap, Titanium and other cross-platform development frameworks will introduce armies of new developers to the benefits of HTML5.
5. Content Moves to the Cloud
A trend already strong in 2010 will accelerate as organizations look to the cloud to manage their content. Along with the growth will come more maturity in cloud offerings; buyers will expect better compliance, more focus on SLA’s and require Cyber Risk and other provisions. The agility of true cloud solutions will also change buyer’s expectations. Why lock into a multi-tenant solution when it is so easy to scale up VM’s in the cloud with more control and flexibility?
6. Back to Basics
It‘s time for a CMS to start being a CMS again. CMS buyers will turn away from complex platform solutions that try to deliver marketing automation, e-commerce and email management all in one basket. Most businesses already have solutions to manage their web marketing; they need good CMS tools and integrations to deliver the experiences. Existing customers will demand enhancements to basic content features before buying add-ons. We will see much more focus in 2011 on core CMS features and capabilities.
7. Got Apps? Welcome to the CMS App Store
With CMS vendors refocusing on core features, they will expand App Store offerings for delivering integrations and value added solutions. 2011 may be year of the “App Wars” for CMS vendors. From core event calendaring and analytics to integrations with ERP, CRM, AMS and other back office applications, Apps will deliver the much needed integration point between the CMS and rest of the content ecosystem.
8. Meet the Social CMS
One area CMS vendors will continue to expand capabilities is social and collaboration. CMS buyers expect blogs, forums, member management, commenting and moderation, and other social features to be part of the CMS. While many people are talking about the value of Social CRM, as the number of pages, posts, users and comments continues to stack up, talk will shift to the importance of Social Content Management.
9. Mobile Changes Web Expectations (Death of Brochure-ware)
Mobile and web application expectations will dramatically change web information architecture in 2011. Big Flash value props, About Us commentary and static web pages will fade as new sites feature more functional application and community-centric experiences. Task-based UI will come to the fore and change the way people organize and design websites.
10. MVC Disrupts .NET CMS Marketplace
One of the fastest growing areas in CMS is Microsoft .NET-based systems. However, most of these systems only support the older Web Forms implementation of .NET. In 2011 web developers will demand systems that support the more modern MVC (Model View Control) development framework that embraces web standards and patterns. This shift will disrupt the .NET CMS marketplace as older .NET systems struggle to upgrade while trying to support their installed base and native MVC applications grow in popularity.
And That's Not All
Beyond these changes we will see some other interesting trends in 2011. More and more people will tune-in to the importance of privacy and begin to block cookies and other tracking systems using browser plug-ins like Disconnect. This will disrupt web publishers’ personalization and “experience” strategies and have a ripple effect in the CMS industry.
Mobile payments will be the biggest trend for mobile in 2011. From carrier-enabled billing systems to the huge impact Near Field Communications chips will bring to the market, the mobile content industry will be positioned to do something never realized on the PC web, true content monetization.
I am very excited about the changes that mobile and new technologies will bring to the Web CMS market in 2011. The impact of mobile will be a turning point for Web CMS, yet one that brings the industry back to where it all started: where content is available to any device, user experience becomes truly functional and the Web CMS affirms its role of creating, managing and delivering content.