How well does your WCM tool support mobile experiences?

Everyone wants to support better mobile experiences, but it's a multi-dimensional challenge, from content strategy to UX design to technology delivery.  From a technology standpoint, your choice of Web Content & Experience Management (WCM) tool can help or hinder your mobile strategy.

Responsive Design as Table Stakes

Nearly all tools that we cover in RSG's Web Content & Experience Management evaluations ship with reference implementations for creating responsive websites. That basically means that your display responds automatically  — mostly using HTML, CSS, and JavaScript — for viewing on screens of varying sizes.  In some tools with older codebases you have to perform some work-arounds, but you can usually get there (our research points out a few problematic vendors).

Responsive design support usually suffices for mobile-web use cases where you are primarily delivering informational experiences, but it may not prove apt for more complex use cases.

Advanced Mobile

We see several use cases that take you beyond responsive design:

  • You want to use your WCM to provide content to native mobile apps
  • You want to tailor the mobile experience more deeply than simpler show-hide logic
  • You want to create unique content and experiences shaped specifically for mobile contexts or even specific devices

So when vendors say they support “mobile delivery,” you need to dig deeper, because it may not mean much. And if your mobile universe includes non-traditional environments such as IoT-connected devices these challenges become even bigger.

What to Look for in WCM Systems?

If you are evaluating WCM vendors and mobility is an important use case, make sure you investigate specific capabilities such as:

  • How readily and consistently can you separate content from its presentation?
  • How can a contributor create content without first selecting a page in a hierarchical tree structure?
  • How can a contributor preview an experience across multiple devices?
  • Is the platform API broad enough to allow you inject suitable content and experiences into native mobile apps?
  • Does the system provide capabilities to expose not only content but also services (e.g., workflows, personalization) to be used by mobile apps?
  • Does the platform let you identify and then target special device capabilities (e.g., show local news based on GPS capabilities of mobile device)?

With each passing year we include more mobile-oriented criteria in our WCM research, and our latest major update offers some interesting findings on what different vendors are (and aren't) doing in this area. If you're already an RSG subscriber, you can access the new evaluations right away.

If you're not yet a subscriber, you can download a complimentary WCM vendor evaluation.


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Gil, Partner, Cancentric Solutions Inc.
iStudio Canada Inc.

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