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12 must features for your new publishing CMS

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If you are planning on switching content manager, ideally you should use an experienced media specialist provider, with a team that is familiar with the needs of the newsrooms 3.0 of today.

When you are thinking about switching content manager you will have many questions. First you need to know why you want to make the change. It is not easy in such a specific sector and you might have software that does not meet the outlet's requirements, you do not know much about the solution and cannot make full use of it, or you might have user dissatisfaction, lack of scalability or poor technical service.

Most problems are solved by finding a provider who specialises in media, with experience in the sector and a team who are familiar with the needs of the newsrooms 3.0 of today.

There are several products on the market that could meet these criteria in principle, but before you make a decision, you need to make sure that the chosen solution includes the latest developments to streamline the newsroom's work, boost traffic, increase customer loyalty and maximise profit.

The following are the 4 cornerstones of a sound CMS for the newsroom 3.0, and the best features to achieve it.

SEO positioning

1. Tools like related content recommendations to optimise linkbuilding, based on the article's content, which help boost a website's ranking, the Google algorithm that measures quality and relevance.

2. Automatic generation of keywords. We do not need to explain the importance of tags and keywords to position your articles. A tool that streamlines this process helps writers focus on the most important aspect, the information and article writing process.

3. The SEO traffic light system is the basic tool to help writers produce their articles. As the writer uploads their news story, a CMS like Iter informs them about how to improve the SEO of their article and allows them to change it to optimise it in the search engines.


If you want a new content manager to get off on the right foot with future users (writers, freelancers, designers, etc.) you must look closely at their usability and user experience.

4. Remote access. These days, with the proliferation of external collaborators and working from home, a tool that does not allow writers to connect from any browser to perform their work cannot even be conceived.

5. WYSIWYG preview. Being able to see what the article will look like on the browser while you are writing it should not be an option; these days it is essential to be able to work efficiently.

6. Drag and drop for image galleries. We are all used to doing this in any of our office or design programs. A good CMS like Iter Web cannot work without such a feature.

7. Access to the content hub, historical archive, agency content, etc. from the tool itself. This avoids opening hundreds of windows to copy and paste text, look for information or images and remember several passwords.

Content focused on the user

There are lots of things we can do to help writers to work more efficiently and ensure our news stories are the first hits on search engines like Google's Discovery, but if we do not engage readers this will all be in vain. That is why we need our CMS to help us focus content based on each user.

8. Integrated analytics tools. When we have the users' browsing information we can automatically recommend them content tailored to their reading preferences, behaviour or habits. Some of the criteria taken into account for lists of news stories and intelligent content recommendations are:

- the reading history for the last month

- the topics most read in general

- the topics that the reader is interested in at that time

- the articles that the newsroom wants to make known

The newsroom can also choose the % of importance that it attaches to each of the 4 points and the algorithm works for each user. This helps increase reader loyalty. There are more clicks and this also impacts ad impressions.

9. Conditional rendering of portlets: by location, day of the week, time of day (to run the news live) and RFV profile (more loyal users are shown fewer ads), depending on whether the user is registered or not.

Registered users can follow specific topics based on categories or specific issues and save news to read later or as favourites.

All of this allows the outlet to provide content that is of interest to each user, which is important for conversion to subscriptions. Iter even offers the option of customising the news home page for each user.

10. A/B testing is another essential feature of a CMS targeted at the media. This allows us to know, in real time, which headlines and/or images appeal more to readers and take decisions to maximise the number of pages visited and reader engagement.

The International News Media Association recently launched the downloadable report “Best Personalisation Practices for News Media” which includes the best personalisation practices, ideas and recommendations for the media. This report, which is a must-read, reinforces the importance of these features that CMS Iter offers to media outlets.

Social media

11. Another must for a publishing CMS is integrated and automated sharing to social media and push notifications from the tool itself.

12. When streamlining the publication process on social media, semantic intelligence is a powerful tool that saves the newsroom a lot of time. This AI engine based on NLP (Natural Language Processing) can propose summaries of news content for tweets, posts or push notifications.

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