What is CMS?
A Content Management System(CMS) is a software system used for content management. This includes computer files, image media, audio files, electronic documents and web content. The idea behind a CMS is to make these files available inter-office, as well as over the web. Many companies use a CMS to store files in a non-proprietary form. Companies using a CMS file share with ease, as most systems use server based software, even further broadening file availability. As shown below, many Content Management Systems include a feature for Web Content, and some have a feature for a "workflow process."
A web content management system is a content management system with additional features to ease the tasks required to publish web content to web sites.
Web content management systems are often used for storing, controlling, versioning, and publishing industry-specific documentation such as marketing brochures, news articles, operators’ manuals, technical manuals, sales guides, and more. They can provide a way for both prospects and customers alike to interact with your company.
What does all this mean?
First it means that web content can be put into the hands of small business owners releasing them from the chains of a web design company to update information and content. Why do some small business web sites have outdated information? Because they can’t control the content themselves.
Second it means affordability! Why is it affordable? Simply answered: It takes less time. Web design firms are in the business to make money. Most charge an hourly rate or come up with a fixed price (based on the number of hours it will take to create your web site). Often they develop every component that your website needs as a custom application. Take for instance that you want a link on every page of your site that will allow a visitor to "email this page to a friend". The typical web designer will write the code to accomplish that and include the cost of creating that in their overall price to you.
A prebuilt web CMS already has that feature and many others already built in. Through the installation of pre-built components the functionality can be expanded even further with ease.