6 Best Content Management Platforms for News Publishers

Last Updated: March 14, 2024
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Want to ditch the code yet build your site? Content management systems (CMS) can integrate and centralize key aspects of the editorial process for you. As an essential component of the digital publishing industry, CMS lets you create, edit, organize, and publish content, all from one user-friendly interface to streamline the process of creation for publishers for content creators in the niche. Are you on the hunt for the best CMS for news publishing? Since the wrong CMS can cripple your digital presence, let's dive into the ways you can accelerate your news publishing business and take it to the next level through our review of the 7 Best Content Management Platforms for News Publishers:

  • 6 Best Content Management Platforms for News Publishers
    • 1. Wordpress
    • 2. Drupal
    • 3. Joomla
    • 4. Wix
    • 5. Bolt
    • 6. Squarespace

1. Wordpress

WordPress is perhaps the most widely known open source CMS for publishers and a solid choice for a site builder. Ideal for news publishers of all sizes, the platform’s simplicity, ease of use, and extensive plugin ecosystem make it the winning choice for many in the news and publishing industry. Designed to be a one-stop-shop to practically fit any need, its long list of features and capabilities are optimized to make your site compliant with Google's ranking algorithm, so all you have to do is focus on your content and editorial tasks.

Key Features:

  • Ease of Use and Quick Setup: WordPress offers a straightforward setup process, allowing publishers to get their websites up and running within minutes. 
  • Customization Options: Its wide range of themes and templates can be customized a step further by using the built-in theme editor or by using custom CSS code.
  • Extensive Plugin Ecosystem: Its vast library of over 55,000 free plugins extend the functionality of the platform, allowing publishers to add features such as social media integration, e-commerce capabilities, and search engine optimization (SEO) tools.
  • SEO Capabilities: Unlike many other site builders, WordPress is designed for search engine optimization and is the preferred tool for creating SEO-friendly sites. It automatically generates search engine-friendly URLs, with options for adding meta tags and descriptions, and supports the creation of XML sitemaps. 

2. Drupal

Drupal is a robust open-source CMS that is well-suited for large-scale news publishing projects and organizations with complex content management needs. It offers advanced customization, scalability, and security features that make it a popular choice among news and media publishers. The platform works exceptionally well in creating multi-channel experiences to connect with your reader base. Drupal also does a good job at assisting your editorial workflows through its digital management system. Its fast and clutter-free interface, and seamless workflow, easily make it one of the best content management platforms for news publishers out there.

Key Features:

  • Scalability and Customization: One of the key advantages of Drupal is its ability to handle large and complex websites with ease. It offers advanced customization options, allowing publishers to create highly tailored websites that meet their specific requirements.
  • Robust Security Features: Drupal is renowned for its strong security features, making it an ideal choice for the news publishing industry who prioritize data protection and privacy.
  • Advanced Content Management: Its content management system lets you create and manage multi-level taxonomies, custom content types, and flexible workflows.
  • Multilingual Capabilities: Drupal’s multilingual capabilities are ideal for news publishers with a global audience.

3. Joomla

Joomla is a solid open source content management platform for news publishers as it makes publishing its top priority with comparatively less plugins and templates to avoid straying away from its core offering. The interface is simple and once you are ready with your site, editing it is fairly straightforward and a hassle-free experience. Joomla is widely used for various types of websites, making it a viable option for news publishers of all sizes.

Key Features:

  • Customization & Editing: Joomla’s front-end editing feature easily allows you to make changes to your test website directly from the front end, without having to go through the admin panel.
  • Multiple User Management: Joomla supports multiple users, and different permission settings for each user, from simple editing permissions to full access, with the option to delete users when needed.
  • Free Extensions: Its extensions are free to use just like the platform
  • Security: Joomla constantly updates their CMS to provide security patches, in keeping with the news publishing industry’s need for data protection and security. 

4. Wix

With affordable pricing and a free plan, Wix features an excellent drag-and-drop editor with over 800 free templates and extensive features to make publishing an effortless task. The layouts are visually impressive and a great option for new age news media or independent publishing houses who prioritize aesthetics over more traditionally clinical reporting layouts. Wix gives you a ton of freedom to scale its capabilities to fit your needs.

Key Features:

  • Vast Template Library: Wix’s pre-built layouts are stunning and chances are you will find a template for practically anything, including a range of options tailored to the news and publishing industry.
  • Easy Editing: It is an extremely flexible platform, with nearly limitless extent to which elements can be rearranged and customized. The end result is always clean and striking.
  • Automatic Site Backup: Wix automatically creates a backup of your website that can be restored at any time.
  • SEO Optimization: Wix provides you with all of the tools to help you optimize your site content for SEO, including a step-by-step guide to help you improve your search engine ranking.

5. Bolt

Although Bolt is a lesser known open source CMS option on the market, its capabilities are strong with quick and responsive page load times. Bolt lets you personalize things from scratch using the Twig templating language for those who wish to run their own ship through and through. For news publishers, this could mean a lot more autonomy and structural flexibility. For those who wish to utilize the platform’s pre-existing templates instead, Bolt CMS comes with all the necessary integrations to fit your needs. The platform is ideal for independent publishers and small news media companies looking to prioritize content strategies.

Key Features:

  • Extensions: Bolt has a multitude of third party extensions to help you with everything, from SEO to positioning strategies and more
  • .Clean Interface: There aren’t a lot of bells and whistles with this platform, the interface is simple and straightforward which gets the job of creating a navigation-friendly webpage well done.
  • Activity Log: All user access and activity within the CMS are meticulously tracked and logged for easy access and problem tracking.
  • Security: Bolt features the fastest bug fixes and the safest upgrades because it was created by and for web developers.

6. Squarespace

Squarespace is hands down the most aesthetically stunning SEO optimized CMS and site builder that lets you create websites within minutes. Small to medium scale news publishers can utilize the platform’s relative ease of use, range of customizations and simple interface to accelerate their news publishing business. However, Squarespace offers fewer third party integrations compared to its competitors, and its pricing may be a drawback for some. If you are looking for a straightforward, hassle-free and visually appealing website to showcase podcasts, image-centric news, or other rich media content, this is a very good option.

Key Features:

  • Integrated Blog: Squarespace’s integrated blog is great for managing article-heavy content with multiple writer access and scheduled posts.
  • Customizable Design: Its style editor gives you a lot of flexibility and control over the look and feel of your website.
  • Extensive Template Library: It offers you over 100 themes that are SEO friendly and completely switchable.
  • Marketing Features: It has excellent marketing features, including email and social media support.


Editorial Staff at Publisher Growth is a team of blogging and AdTech experts adept at creating how-to, tutorials, listings, and reviews that can publishers run their online businesses in a better way.

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