Going Headless With Your Enterprise CMS in 2022

Why it's time to go headless for Enterprise.

Joel Varty
Joel Varty
Feb 9, 2022
Going Headless With Your Enterprise CMS in 2022

A content management system has arguably never been more critical than it is today as content continues to play a major role in how every company operates. With a website and social media platforms being the first area where many customers may interact with a business, it’s essential to have the right systems in place to support these interactions. That’s where the choice of CMS is crucial as it needs to be appropriate for content creators and developers to create the best customer experiences. 

According to Gartner, “composable business designs prepare leaders to make decisions that would have been too risky without the architecture of composability.” Enterprise-level organizations need to have the right software tools to facilitate this composability, and the type of CMS they choose can have a major impact. That’s why many executives may be considering going headless with their CMS, so they don’t lose their proverbial heads in the long run. 

How an Enterprise CMS works on agilitycms.com

What Is An Enterprise Headless CMS?

An enterprise headless CMS supports all of the features and functionality that a large enterprise-level business with hundreds of employees would need. An enterprise headless CMS can provide advanced security, content workflows, users and roles, and permission and scalability, as well as integrate with additional tools to provide advanced personalization, analytics, and more by leveraging an API-first architecture. 

An enterprise CMS may have traditionally meant an all-in-one solution that provided all of this functionality for many companies. Essentially, enterprise businesses think monolithic when considering an enterprise CMS. But that’s not what enterprise means. It means having access to the features and best-of-breed tools that large companies require. 

Using API-first architecture in an Enterprise CMS on agilitycms.com

So, if an organization needs personalization features, it should be able to easily integrate with a tool that provides those capabilities. They should also be able to integrate with the best analytics tools available to ensure that they are targeting the right audience, optimizing for the right conversions, and more. CRMs, ERP systems, and anything else the business needs should be easily integrated to facilitate the needs of enterprise business. 

The Failing Monolithic CMS

Many companies may already have a monolithic CMS in use. However, as Gartner pointed out regarding composability, we’re entering into a new phase of building software stacks. MACH architecture has begun to take center stage as a new approach to enterprise architecture. The MACH acronym, which stands for Microservices based, API-first, Cloud-native SaaS, and Headless, gives enterprises another way to build their technology ecosystems. 

 

With organizations like the MACH Alliance being formed around this architectural design, some enterprises might think of MACH as the latest trend or buzz term. The reality is that many enterprises are already buying into the MACH approach, and for good reason. 

The content management industry, in particular, is undergoing a shift in priorities from all-in-one suites to composable platforms built from the ground up using headless architecture and away from legacy platforms. 

Monolithic CMSs are struggling to meet the demands of modern businesses as they are too restrictive and have some drawbacks that are causing their downfall. Some of these drawbacks include: 

The failing monolith cms vs Agility CMS

Feature bloat

While it may seem advantageous to have access to several tools, in many cases, there are just too many of them, and they can be quite unnecessary. Enterprise businesses require numerous tools to facilitate the requirements of all of their departments. But even so, monolithic platforms can come equipped with tools many will never use. If they do use them, they usually aren’t the best available tools on the market, putting the business at a disadvantage compared to if they just integrated a best-in-class analytics or CRM platform instead. 

Rising costs

With the feature, bloat comes rising costs which can negatively impact enterprise budgets. Companies end up paying for these additional tools they won’t use because the suite can’t be broken up. Plus, if the business decides to add a best-in-class system to replace one of these additional features, they end up paying the cost for two systems instead of one. 

Difficult integrations

Most monolithic headless CMS platforms boast APIs to facilitate integrations, just like a headless CMS. Unfortunately, while these APIs are accessible, it can be hard to integrate new systems with an existing suite because of the architectural makeup. 

Why Your Enterprise Needs A Headless CMS 

Despite the drawbacks of a monolithic CMS, you may still be on the fence as to why your enterprise business should choose a headless CMS. Here are some of the reasons why and the benefits you can expect with a headless platform: 

Keep up with the fast-paced digital environment 

Customer expectations continue to change in the digital landscape, so too do the tools and technologies required to support those expectations within an enterprise business. A headless CMS with API-first technology enables you to swap out best-of-breed tools and consistently choose the best platform for your particular use case. It also means that your CMS can integrate more easily with new front-end interfaces as the channels where customers view content continue to evolve. 

Increase marketer and developer productivity

While monolithic CMSs can often be restrictive for the persons using them, a headless CMS provides increased flexibility and productivity for marketers and developers. As the number of digital channels continues to grow, marketers must be able to create and publish content for all of those platforms easily. For developers, the front-end technologies they have access to continuing to change every year, and they must be able to choose the best option for their requirements and the customer’s benefit. A headless CMS provides for both these areas. 

Unified content hub

With a monolithic CMS, content can wind up in many siloed locations, despite the number of connected systems. A headless CMS creates a unified content hub that allows marketers to publish content anywhere and reuse that content as they see fit, whether in a different format or on a different channel. 

Versioning & content workflows

Publishing content to multiple channels at the same time can get hectic. A headless CMS can provide the content workflows to ensure your content goes through the right vetting process before it gets published. In addition, you can quickly roll back to previous versions of content to make adjustments and prevent mistakes. 

API-driven composability & extensibility

Part of the argument for composability is that it allows enterprises to quickly make changes to their software stack as new technologies emerge, removing the need to continually re-platform because the new eCommerce platform doesn’t integrate well. A headless CMS provides the necessary API-driven composability and extensibility that enables businesses to seamlessly integrate with new systems and software.

Benefits of Agility CMS

Future-proof architecture

When new technologies are introduced, businesses need the flexibility to quickly adapt without ripping and replacing everything. A headless CMS provides the future-proof architecture that allows you to ‘start again’ if necessary. With connections formed through APIs and framework-agnostic frontend, developers can quickly update your website or create new interfaces that allow you to connect to and deliver content to the latest VR system or expand into new technologies like blockchain and the metaverse. 

Enhanced personalization

Businesses need to be able to gather data on their customers and then use that information to tailor the customer experience to each customer’s individual needs. Connections with CRMs, analytics, and personalization tools mean that a headless CMS can help to provide the enhanced personalization that customers crave today. In addition, you can also implement a localization strategy to tailor content to customers that speak different languages or live in other regions. 

Agility CMS: A Headless CMS For the Enterprise

Speed and flexibility are critical to enterprise businesses. Agility CMS provides these qualities and more, making it the ideal headless CMS for the enterprise. Agility CMS not only offers a better alternative to the monolithic CMS, but it is also different from any other headless CMS. 

  • Fast and flexible development: Developers can build everything they want with our platform, using our REST or GraphQL API and our Sync SDK. Agility CMS is even compatible with your DevOps pipeline, so unlimited possibilities exist. 

  • Familiar authoring tools: For marketers, monolithic CMSs may have provided user-friendly tools they’re afraid to lose. Agility CMS enables them to take control of their content and get up to speed quickly. 

  • Sitemap: Agility CMS provides a sitemap that allows editors to manage multiple content destinations (website, IoT-connected device, application, etc.) within a single Instance. 

Agility CMS sitemaps screenshot on agilitycms.com

  • Page management: Agility CMS’ page management feature makes it easy to work with content pages and do things without developer assistance. Editors can also rely on built-in SEO fields to optimize content. Also, with page modules, editors can compose the content on each page with ease. 

  • Azure-hosted for easier scalability: Enterprises need to be able to scale quickly, and with Agility CMS’ deployment in Microsoft Azure, unlimited scalability is at your fingertips. 

  • Enterprise security: Security is another area where enterprises need the best. Agility CMS features encrypted data, enterprise SSO, multi-factor authentication, and SOC 2 Type II compliance. 

Are you still on your journey toward a headless CMS? Take a look at our ‘How to Choose the Best Headless CMS For Your Brand’ guide to identify some of the key characteristics you should consider. 



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Back to All Articles
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Feb 9, 2022

Going Headless With Your Enterprise CMS in 2022

Why it's time to go headless for Enterprise.

Joel Varty

Topic

Headless CMSHeadless CMSAgile CMS Agile CMS digital transformation digital transformation Enterprise Solutions Enterprise Solutions EnterpriseEnterprise
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Going Headless With Your Enterprise CMS in 2022

A content management system has arguably never been more critical than it is today as content continues to play a major role in how every company operates. With a website and social media platforms being the first area where many customers may interact with a business, it’s essential to have the right systems in place to support these interactions. That’s where the choice of CMS is crucial as it needs to be appropriate for content creators and developers to create the best customer experiences. 

According to Gartner, “composable business designs prepare leaders to make decisions that would have been too risky without the architecture of composability.” Enterprise-level organizations need to have the right software tools to facilitate this composability, and the type of CMS they choose can have a major impact. That’s why many executives may be considering going headless with their CMS, so they don’t lose their proverbial heads in the long run. 

How an Enterprise CMS works on agilitycms.com

What Is An Enterprise Headless CMS?

An enterprise headless CMS supports all of the features and functionality that a large enterprise-level business with hundreds of employees would need. An enterprise headless CMS can provide advanced security, content workflows, users and roles, and permission and scalability, as well as integrate with additional tools to provide advanced personalization, analytics, and more by leveraging an API-first architecture. 

An enterprise CMS may have traditionally meant an all-in-one solution that provided all of this functionality for many companies. Essentially, enterprise businesses think monolithic when considering an enterprise CMS. But that’s not what enterprise means. It means having access to the features and best-of-breed tools that large companies require. 

Using API-first architecture in an Enterprise CMS on agilitycms.com

So, if an organization needs personalization features, it should be able to easily integrate with a tool that provides those capabilities. They should also be able to integrate with the best analytics tools available to ensure that they are targeting the right audience, optimizing for the right conversions, and more. CRMs, ERP systems, and anything else the business needs should be easily integrated to facilitate the needs of enterprise business. 

The Failing Monolithic CMS

Many companies may already have a monolithic CMS in use. However, as Gartner pointed out regarding composability, we’re entering into a new phase of building software stacks. MACH architecture has begun to take center stage as a new approach to enterprise architecture. The MACH acronym, which stands for Microservices based, API-first, Cloud-native SaaS, and Headless, gives enterprises another way to build their technology ecosystems. 

 

With organizations like the MACH Alliance being formed around this architectural design, some enterprises might think of MACH as the latest trend or buzz term. The reality is that many enterprises are already buying into the MACH approach, and for good reason. 

The content management industry, in particular, is undergoing a shift in priorities from all-in-one suites to composable platforms built from the ground up using headless architecture and away from legacy platforms. 

Monolithic CMSs are struggling to meet the demands of modern businesses as they are too restrictive and have some drawbacks that are causing their downfall. Some of these drawbacks include: 

The failing monolith cms vs Agility CMS

Feature bloat

While it may seem advantageous to have access to several tools, in many cases, there are just too many of them, and they can be quite unnecessary. Enterprise businesses require numerous tools to facilitate the requirements of all of their departments. But even so, monolithic platforms can come equipped with tools many will never use. If they do use them, they usually aren’t the best available tools on the market, putting the business at a disadvantage compared to if they just integrated a best-in-class analytics or CRM platform instead. 

Rising costs

With the feature, bloat comes rising costs which can negatively impact enterprise budgets. Companies end up paying for these additional tools they won’t use because the suite can’t be broken up. Plus, if the business decides to add a best-in-class system to replace one of these additional features, they end up paying the cost for two systems instead of one. 

Difficult integrations

Most monolithic headless CMS platforms boast APIs to facilitate integrations, just like a headless CMS. Unfortunately, while these APIs are accessible, it can be hard to integrate new systems with an existing suite because of the architectural makeup. 

Why Your Enterprise Needs A Headless CMS 

Despite the drawbacks of a monolithic CMS, you may still be on the fence as to why your enterprise business should choose a headless CMS. Here are some of the reasons why and the benefits you can expect with a headless platform: 

Keep up with the fast-paced digital environment 

Customer expectations continue to change in the digital landscape, so too do the tools and technologies required to support those expectations within an enterprise business. A headless CMS with API-first technology enables you to swap out best-of-breed tools and consistently choose the best platform for your particular use case. It also means that your CMS can integrate more easily with new front-end interfaces as the channels where customers view content continue to evolve. 

Increase marketer and developer productivity

While monolithic CMSs can often be restrictive for the persons using them, a headless CMS provides increased flexibility and productivity for marketers and developers. As the number of digital channels continues to grow, marketers must be able to create and publish content for all of those platforms easily. For developers, the front-end technologies they have access to continuing to change every year, and they must be able to choose the best option for their requirements and the customer’s benefit. A headless CMS provides for both these areas. 

Unified content hub

With a monolithic CMS, content can wind up in many siloed locations, despite the number of connected systems. A headless CMS creates a unified content hub that allows marketers to publish content anywhere and reuse that content as they see fit, whether in a different format or on a different channel. 

Versioning & content workflows

Publishing content to multiple channels at the same time can get hectic. A headless CMS can provide the content workflows to ensure your content goes through the right vetting process before it gets published. In addition, you can quickly roll back to previous versions of content to make adjustments and prevent mistakes. 

API-driven composability & extensibility

Part of the argument for composability is that it allows enterprises to quickly make changes to their software stack as new technologies emerge, removing the need to continually re-platform because the new eCommerce platform doesn’t integrate well. A headless CMS provides the necessary API-driven composability and extensibility that enables businesses to seamlessly integrate with new systems and software.

Benefits of Agility CMS

Future-proof architecture

When new technologies are introduced, businesses need the flexibility to quickly adapt without ripping and replacing everything. A headless CMS provides the future-proof architecture that allows you to ‘start again’ if necessary. With connections formed through APIs and framework-agnostic frontend, developers can quickly update your website or create new interfaces that allow you to connect to and deliver content to the latest VR system or expand into new technologies like blockchain and the metaverse. 

Enhanced personalization

Businesses need to be able to gather data on their customers and then use that information to tailor the customer experience to each customer’s individual needs. Connections with CRMs, analytics, and personalization tools mean that a headless CMS can help to provide the enhanced personalization that customers crave today. In addition, you can also implement a localization strategy to tailor content to customers that speak different languages or live in other regions. 

Agility CMS: A Headless CMS For the Enterprise

Speed and flexibility are critical to enterprise businesses. Agility CMS provides these qualities and more, making it the ideal headless CMS for the enterprise. Agility CMS not only offers a better alternative to the monolithic CMS, but it is also different from any other headless CMS. 

  • Fast and flexible development: Developers can build everything they want with our platform, using our REST or GraphQL API and our Sync SDK. Agility CMS is even compatible with your DevOps pipeline, so unlimited possibilities exist. 

  • Familiar authoring tools: For marketers, monolithic CMSs may have provided user-friendly tools they’re afraid to lose. Agility CMS enables them to take control of their content and get up to speed quickly. 

  • Sitemap: Agility CMS provides a sitemap that allows editors to manage multiple content destinations (website, IoT-connected device, application, etc.) within a single Instance. 

Agility CMS sitemaps screenshot on agilitycms.com

  • Page management: Agility CMS’ page management feature makes it easy to work with content pages and do things without developer assistance. Editors can also rely on built-in SEO fields to optimize content. Also, with page modules, editors can compose the content on each page with ease. 

  • Azure-hosted for easier scalability: Enterprises need to be able to scale quickly, and with Agility CMS’ deployment in Microsoft Azure, unlimited scalability is at your fingertips. 

  • Enterprise security: Security is another area where enterprises need the best. Agility CMS features encrypted data, enterprise SSO, multi-factor authentication, and SOC 2 Type II compliance. 

Are you still on your journey toward a headless CMS? Take a look at our ‘How to Choose the Best Headless CMS For Your Brand’ guide to identify some of the key characteristics you should consider. 



A Sneak Peek at Agility CMS' New UI

What's changed, how will it affect you, and when will it launch?

UI training
About the Author

Joel is President at Agility CMS, a SaaS headless content management platform that combines flexible and fast Headless architecture with familiar and easy Authoring tools for editors.

Joel has over 20 years of experience in customer relationship management, product management, and has embraced cloud technology as a ground-breaking concept over a decade ago.

When it comes to cloud computing, development, and software architecture, Joel is as good as they come. Beyond his knowledge, Joel's diligence is enviable.

Topic

Headless CMSHeadless CMSAgile CMS Agile CMS digital transformation digital transformation Enterprise Solutions Enterprise Solutions EnterpriseEnterprise
SHARE POST
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