It is the time of recession, they say. We wonder: do companies still invest money in Web Content Management?

Recent research indicates that WCM will live despite the economic downturn. Better yet, the CMS industry may even experience growth.

Web Content Management Investment is Inevitable

According to a recent report from Forrester, Web Content Management is an industry in which organizations still invest and will likely continue to do so.

Forrester surveyed 261 information and knowledge management professionals with Web Content Management (WCM) decision-making or influencer roles about their WCM strategies and priorities for the coming year.

Forrester’s Stephen Powers in the Q4 2008 Web Content Management Survey predicts that Web CMS industry will continue to grow despite the global economical difficulties, because it is an investment companies must make to remain competitive.

Other findings in the report include:

  • 72% of respondents plan to increase their Web Content Management investment
  • 19% plan to keep investments level of last year
  • 64% of respondents say one of the top business drivers for purchasing WCM is improvement of customer experience
  • 25% of respondents say the second business driver for purchasing WCM is streamlining the Web publishing processes
  • 64% plan to deploy "personalization" in the next 12 months
  • 61% plan to deploy "rich Internet applications" in the next 12 months
  • 55% plan to deploy "audio and/or video" in the next year (respondents could choose more than one option.)

Web Content Management Customers Still Unhappy

The research also shows some unsettling findings. The bad news is that customers expressed overall dissatisfaction with WCM, but not always with Web Content Management vendors.

Powers writes that "Dissatisfaction with current WCM initiatives remains, largely driven by lack of IT and business alignment, unrealistically high expectations and corporate politics."

Sounds very familiar, doesn’t it? Even when an organization makes a decision to buy a certain WCM system, it’s only half of the struggle. Taking the power away from IT is, in most cases, an organizational change that brings considerable amounts of pain. “Oh, but we used to do it this way!” “You want to let Marketing have access to the CSS files – no way!” And it goes on and on.

Add to that the "urban myth" of unrealistically equalizing a signed contract to all the magic happening “out-of-the-box” and let the CMS implementation games (and pains) begin.

Corporate politics can (and do) get in the way of many things, WCM system implementation being one of them. “But my department is more important, I want all my users to be admins.” “But I went to the CEO’s dinner party, I have more weight in designing how the CMS should be implemented.”

Web Content Management Can Make You More Competitive, If You Let It

With all of the growing pains in mind, organizations do recognize that to remain competitive, they have to invest in their Web presence. WCM vendors can do as much as they can to help you steer away from your own corporate politics roadblocks in the CMS implementation -- but, in the end, it is all up to you how successful you want to be.

By cutting back on WCM initiatives, enterprises risk failing to meet customer needs and losing Web momentum to competitors.

2009 Web Content Management Outlook is Bright, but Not Shimmering

We’re not saying that WCM vendors can relax and pretend this economical shake-up has never happened. What we are saying is this is the time to focus on your products and make sure they’re your best offering in the competitive content management market.