What Is a Headless CMS and How Does It Work?
The digital world is progressing rapidly, and it’s forcing companies to move some of their business transactions and marketing online.
This marketing can complicate the back-of-house workflow. Companies are struggling to implement many different systems to keep up with this new technological advance. That’s where headless CMS comes in.
A headless CMS is a single centralized system created with the purpose of simplifying the management of all channels from one place by creating a separated front end and back end. It’s a data source that consists solely of the back end and relies on its API (application programming interface) to facilitate the front ends.
A CMS is an abbreviation and acronym for “Content Management System”. A CMS can create and customize content and functionality using plugins and templates. It’s a multi-use tool that can be used for many purposes, resulting in more than half of websites built using a CMS.
There are many content management systems (CMS) out there. The list is extensive, but a few examples would include Box, Ghost, Bynder, and Squarespace.
Content management systems may also be broken down further into subgroups including (but not limited to):
A headless CMS is a Content Management System that is broken down into three integrated interfaces: the back end, the API (the middleman), and the client-facing side (the front end). It communicates through the API to template content in the proper format for each digital need (channel, browser, or other media types).
A headless CMS is high performing, flexible, and scalable system. It features enhanced security and optimizes performance to create a secure and fast website.
A traditional CMS is used to manage the front and back ends of a website. This is supposed to be a single solution management system. The back end would be used for storage and content management. The front end would be used to deliver the content.
Some examples of the traditional CMS include WordPress, Wix, and Squarespace.
A headless CMS is separated into parts so that the front end can be developed or edited apart from the back end. This allows developers to build as many channels as necessary while allowing content creators and editors to continue doing their job the same way.
Some examples of headless CMS include Contentful, Sanity, and Strapi.
A decoupled CMS uses the same templates across all media or browser types. A headless CMS has unique codes specifically for each browser, channel, or media type.
The headless CMS’s front and back ends are separated. This means the server and the client-side require a form of connection to communicate (where API comes in).
API is an acronym for an application programming interface. This interface is the communicator between the back of the house and the front.
It can simplify omnichannel content publishing. This means that content published can be pushed to different platforms through an API, and each one will be optimized for that media or channel. This means that more media outlets can be used, but all of the content can be used for each of them.
Content could be published in a blog, an app, and VR all at the same time while keeping the templates and structure the same across all media platforms. The API is almost like the mold for the content. The content is pushed through and given a template to follow for each media channel.
A headless CMS will ensure that your content is published across all channels equally and efficiently. A headless CMS could be expanded later, without affecting the production of the back-of-house workers (like writers and editors).
A headless CMS also empowers a director to manage the content from a single source and deliver it to many channels. Your needs and resources may change over time: having a separate back end means you can change tools or development at any time.
Headless CMS generally has quicker load times for websites, which can help with SEO rankings. Headless CMS is flexible and functional. They are connected with the API, but both the front and back ends are editable. While it may take a bigger upfront time investment, headless CMSs are going to be a game-changer in the world of business, bringing faster, lighter, better-integrated websites to the world wide web.