A while ago, the term "Headless CMS" was on everyone's lips, but now it appears less often in newsletters and the news. What does that mean? Are "headless" content management systems no longer the vogue because they’ve lost relevance? Or is this because they‘re so established as a natural, accepted part of the scene? For anyone who wants to be successful in content management, it's probably worth pursuing.
Headless CMS as an allround star in Content Management
Unlike conventional CMS, Headless CMS, as the name suggests, lacks the "head". This means that the content is created layout-neutral and then a separate system, such as a Content Services Platform, is required to distribute it across the different channels. When using multichannel distribution, Headless CMS is a brilliantly effective tool to spread content as broadly and effectively as possible. This form of CMS is thus not well-suited to companies with mainly unchangeable websites.
The aim is to provide the user with the most pleasant possible user experience across channels. This means that the user can view the content, optimised for each end device, and with all the functionality needed - right at that moment. It also enables personalising the content, so that the reader feels cared for and taken seriously. If all the user‘s needs for opening a website are satisfactorily or even perfectly fulfilled, the company in question will remain in his or her memory. These positive associations mean that s/he either becomes or (if a repeat visitor) remains a loyal customer.
The trend now is the move towards the Progressive Web App
With the transition to Progressive Web Apps, users can consume the content they are interested in even more conveniently. PWAs are applications that combine all the benefits of mobile-friendly websites and native apps, thus eliminating the need for double development.
A PWA is opened in the browser, but can be dragged onto the display like an app with an icon, for example on end devices such as mobile phones. The contents, once accessed, are also available in an offline environment. Features such as push messages, previously only available for apps, are now available to operators of PWAs. A further advantage is that no payable installation from an app store is required, which lowers that mental hurdle for users.
This is where the Headless CMS comes into play
In conjunction with a scalable headless CMS, a Progressive Web App makes a very efficient frontend. Content for all touchpoints, for optimal user experiences, can be created using this combination, in no time at all. Companies are therfore flexible and fast when it comes to publications, and achieve an excellent time-to-market.
What’s more - other frontend types can also be used without problems, because the Headless CMS does not require any adaptation. It simply plays out the required raw data, according to the corresponding instruction. It is fully flexible for use with all possible technologies that already exist or are currently in development, or in the future’s eye.
Hybrid Headless CMS – the logical evolution
Since the design possibilities in the front end of a Headless CMS reach their limits relatively quickly, (a drawback, especially in creative industries), manufacturers have begun developing so-called hybrid Headless CMS. These combine the advantages of headless CMS with the usability of classic CMS, in which features such as smart layouts or intelligent preview functions are available. This adds to the visual attractiveness of your content even while Hybrid CMS cabability distributes this content efficiently across all channels.
Hybrid CMS are, for the most, advanced developments of classic CMS, but equipped with an API interface. They can usually be converted to a headless version and are offered by an increasing number of reputable manufacturers as an alternative to the known systems.
With the current rapid transformation of the digital world, this far-reaching compatibility with other technologies is one of the greatest advantages of the Headless CMS, especially in hybrid form. Throughout this, it still combines comfortable operation with the perfect user experience – ensuring its place in the content management sphere for a good while to come.
Are you interested in other trends and developments in Content Management? In our free whitepaper „Headless CMS – the architectur of the future for digital experiences“ we explain, why the topic Headless CMS is gaining relevance, how Headless CMS exactly work, and in which application cases, the use is particularly advantageous.