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What makes Umbraco a great CMS

We explain the difference between a good CMS and a great CMS.

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More than 700,000 CMS projects across the world are currently powered by Umbraco, used by businesses of all types, sizes and sectors, from charities and start-ups to FTSE 500 organisations looking for the flexibility and robustness of a modern CMS, including Microsoft, Reebok, JP Morgan and Mercedes-Benz.

It offers everything that developers, site owners, content managers, designers and marketers need to create and maintain high quality, secure websites that are not only easy to use, but are dynamic and scalable. Interested to find out more? Contact Yoyo, an Umbraco Web Development Agency based in Kent.

Umbraco was created in Denmark and officially released in 2005. Built on Microsoft’s .NET Framework, Umbraco is an Open Source Content Management System (CMS). Find out more about “What Umbraco is” here. In this blog, we’re going to look at some of the features that make Umbraco not just a good CMS, but a great CMS.

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Umbraco’s security features

With almost four in ten businesses (39%) reporting cyber security breaches or attacks in the 12 months leading to March 2021, online security for businesses has never been more important – especially for those handling sensitive information or highly secure data such as corporate, e-commerce or governmental content.

Umbraco is built on Microsoft .NET technology which in itself provides an unprecedented level of security – higher than most other open source development languages and comes with certain checks and balances in place to keep malicious code out – and to give users and clients peace of mind.

Adhering to best practice is an important part of Umbraco’s security operations and the CMS has its own additional (and extensive) security measures to keep sites as secure as possible. These include the use of HTTPS (adding secure layer which ensures that the data cannot be seen or manipulated as it transmits across the public internet), account security (backend users can reset their own passwords) and automated platform updates to make sure sites are always running the latest, most secure version of Umbraco. 

Umbraco’s codebase is subjected to routine penetration testing and third-party auditing and if a vulnerability is discovered, it can be fixed automatically and at speed. Twice yearly penetration tests of Umbraco CMS and Umbraco Cloud to scan for common vulnerabilities are also carried out, both internally and through the use of an external security company. The most recent test was in September 2021 and the next is expected in March 2022. 

Active Developer Community

At Umbraco’s heart is a friendly global community of over 200,000 developers with a shared mission of contributing to its core system.  

Every day, this worldwide team of proactive, talented and passionate developers offer valuable advice, feedback and helpful suggestions for suitable features and improvements, report (and fix) bugs and share security issues. And since Umbraco is an Open Source CMS platform, this feedback and support contributes to Umbraco’s evolution and growth. Umbraco web developers never feel alone! 

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Scalability

An essential part of any CMS and website that it can grow with your company, not only as your online presence increases and your requirements change, but also as your digital agility improves. 

We’ve already seen, in one of our previous blogs, that Umbraco is a highly scalable and versatile CMS with numerous features. This makes it an ideal CMS solution for businesses looking to scale and grow that can create everything from simple websites to complex web applications.

A suite of fully customisable API integrations, plugins and feature extensions can be added as the business grows, allowing web developers to build a fully integrated and future-proof site that can feed content to and from other digital platforms. Meanwhile, the use of Umbraco Cloud means more memory and disk space can be added to the website as the volume of traffic increases.

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Umbraco’s super easy to use interface

Umbraco is known for its user-friendly interface. Quick and simple to set up, Umbraco comes with everything C# developers need to build a simple website right out of the box, with a single installer that does everything. 

Since content management is kept separate from the development area, Umbraco is an ideal CMS choice for non-technical content editors with minimal experience of site management and no coding knowledge. In fact, anyone with the basic browser skills can quickly learn to edit and maintain a website with Umbraco’s intuitive, fast and easy-to-use platform.

Umbraco is a pure CMS, which means all content can be created, edited and accessed from the front end, giving users a high level of design flexibility. The content hierarchy and editing experience makes it easy to visualise the site’s structure, to locate pages and content, make updates and publish changes. Users can easily upload photos and videos, or even create an image slider directly on a page.

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Umbraco CMS platform is fee-free

Umbraco is an open-source CMS, built on the foundation that it benefits all involved in the design, development and maintenance of a website, from designers, developers, content creators, website owners and users. On a practical level, it also means that it’s free.

Clients simply pay for the design service and once the website has been built, there are no additional licenses, fees or ongoing monthly costs – although there are some paid packages if you need specialised functionality such as custom forms. There are additional packages such as forms and workflows and Umbraco offer a paid-for support package & hosting, but the majority of functionality you need is included in the free version. 

Furthermore, since it’s an open-source platform, it can be seamlessly passed on to any Umbraco-experienced web designer, meaning clients aren’t tied to any one design agency.

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Complete control over CMS

Central to Umbraco’s CMS platform is the freedom it offers clients to do and manage things their way. 

Once the website is fully designed and live, the content management can be handed over to the client, giving them the ability to update new features from their end. 

And because Umbraco can be accessed by more than one person, the entire team can be trained on its use with no need for a dedicated, trained webmaster or IT lead. Clients feel in control of their own content, and by making it as inclusive and intuitive as possible, users (‘members’) can add or remove other members and amend editing permissions.

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Continuous Updates of the CMS platform

As part of Umbraco’s mission to “strive to make things simpler” it works to continually improve its functionality, future-proof its technical features and accommodate increasing consumer demands for dynamic, personalised user experiences. With every new release, Umbraco promises a CMS that’s simpler for everyone - editors, developers, web agencies and the daily Umbraco users. 

In February 2019, Umbraco 8 (now much-loved) was released, the first major update to its CMS since 2013 and today, Umbraco 9 is available, offering plenty of exciting new features for web developers to build better, faster websites and digital solutions.

According to Umbraco’s website: “Going forward we plan to ship two major versions of Umbraco each year. The releases will be aligned with Microsoft’s release cadence for .NET ensuring that you’re always running on the latest, fastest, and most secure version of both Umbraco and the underlying framework.”

For our clients, these regular updates and releases mean they can expect a secure, dynamic CMS experience which will deliver up to date features, leveraged to their individual needs and giving them a digital solution which will always be fit for purpose. The difference between a good CMS and a great CMS!

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