Usability, Content Management

Intuitive Tools Make Better Websites

using laptopChances are your website depends on people whose core job responsibilities don’t fall into the web bucket. They’re communications staff, admissions counselors, administrative assistants, academic advisors, and others, including many who never expected to be part-time webmasters.

Some are comfortable with technology. Others, not so much. All of them need to get into their pages on your institution’s website, make changes, and get out without breaking anything.

Web content management systems (CMSs) were created with these kinds of contributors in mind, acknowledging that websites—especially college and university sites—rely on distributed teams with a wide range of skills. A good CMS makes it possible to update content and publish pages without knowing an iota of code.

But not all CMSs are created equal. Some require wading through directories, managing content via forms, and hitting preview or publish to see the impact of a change. Steep learning curves can frustrate contributors, making it all the more likely that they’ll let their pages languish.

We built OU Campus™ with everyday contributors in mind, offering the most intuitive and efficient CMS experience available in higher education. Take a look at some of the user-friendly features that truly set us apart:

DirectEdit™: With OU Campus, contributors navigate directly to the page they want to edit, then click a link (typically the last updated date at the bottom of the page) to sign in. They immediately get an editable version of the page—no searching required.

In-context editing: Among the most powerful features of OU Campus, contributors make edits within fully rendered versions of each page, seeing exactly how their changes impact overall design. It’s a completely different experience than the form-based editing common to many CMSs.

User-specific permissions: OU Campus allows you to give users access to the precise pages and content blocks they need to manage—nothing more, nothing less. You can even manage which editing features appear in their WYSIWYG toolbars.

Gadgets: This convenient set of tools connects contributors with image libraries, code snippets (e.g., call-to-action buttons), form builders, workflow functions, and so much more, all with just a couple of clicks.

Drag and drop: OU Campus lets contributors quickly drag content around within the CMS and even drop content in from their desktops.

Image management: Using OU Campus’ Images Gadget, contributors can drag images from a library to any editable region of a page. Images also can be resized, cropped, and rotated using an intuitive editor.

Copy/paste rules: This handy function strips out text formatting created from applications like Microsoft Word, making it easy to insert clean content from documents.

Preview options: Want to see what a page will look like on a mobile device or across different web browsers? OU Campus makes it easy to preview pages as they’ll appear on every common platform and device.

Customizable workflows: Sometimes you need another set of eyes—OU Campus lets you enforce workflows that require users to submit their changes to an approver in order for the content to be published.

Instant publishing: Once a page is ready to go, OU Campus publishes it immediately (or at any time you schedule). No publishing queues and no waiting.

Version archive: OU Campus keeps old copies of pages just in case you need to swap in an earlier version or compare changes.

Final checks: Prior to publication, OU Campus scans pages for spelling errors, broken links, W3C code validation issues, and accessibility problems—and it offers suggested fixes.

Integrated social media posts: OU Campus can automatically push posts to your official Facebook and Twitter accounts when pages are published, alerting followers about news, events, and the like, and driving them back to your website.

All together, these features optimize the way content contributors really work and offer an experience unlike any other CMS. Intuitive tools make contributors happy. Happy contributors make regular updates. Regular updates make your site compelling, showcasing your school in the best possible light.

Want to see these features in action? Check out our product videos or request a demo.

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Brandon Scheirman

Software Trainer

Brandon Scheirman is a Software Trainer at OmniUpdate, helping OU Campus users get the most out of their CMS experience. A tech lover at work and at home, you might find Brandon building a computer or practicing his programming skills in his spare time.