Forrester Agile CMS Wave 2021 Resource Page Image

Acquia Named a Leader in 2021 Forrester Wave for Agile Content Management Systems

February 22, 2021 7 minute read
Today, Acquia was named a leader in The 2021 Forrester Wave Agile Content Management Systems (CMS). Here's what it means to be an Agile CMS.

Forrester Agile CMS Wave 2021 Resource Page Image

The digital experience tides have turned and ushered in a new era of content management that's both adaptable and resilient. Forrester announced the release of the new Wave for Agile Content Management Systems (CMS), replacing their Web Content Management (WCM) Wave to align with the demands of today’s digital market for more extensible and holistic customer experiences. Today, Acquia was named a leader in The Forrester Wave™: Agile Content Management Systems (CMSes), Q1 2021

We believe this represents the transformation of today’s digital landscape, defined by the ever-expanding number of digital channels, the need to create more content than ever before and the customer requirement to have it available on-demand. 

Content today serves as the foundation of a more expansive kind of customer experience. People today don’t move from Point A to Point B when researching and selecting a solution for their needs. They shift between different channels and applications, and they expect businesses to serve them valuable content across all of these touchpoints. As a result, brands must shape their digital experiences around agile content management. 

At Acquia, we believe that organizations can achieve this agility through the flexible architecture of an open digital experience platform (DXP) equipped with Agile CMS. They need connectivity and solutions that unite marketing and IT. Together, they desire unmatched ease of use, security and scalability. By choosing an Agile CMS that unites IT and Marketing, brands will be ready to deploy the types of content that customers want on demand.

1. Open Means the Flexibility to Pivot and Change Direction 

Traditional web content management viewed customer experience as a linear journey. Legacy marketing vendors attempted to stitch together single-point solutions like your CRM to a marketing automation tool and then to a customer success portal without a central point of connectivity. The result? Content and data became siloed, and teams built disjointed experiences without ever seeing the full picture of their customer. 

Acquia’s API-first approach breaks these barriers down with an open platform that integrates all technologies so your content is informed and can be repurposed in new ways. At the core of Acquia’s DXP is our enterprise content management solution built on the open source technology Drupal. Drupal offers thousands of pre-built connections and modules and equips organizations with the ability to seamlessly integrate with any other solution, bought or built. Unlike proprietary vendors, an open platform serves more as an erasable white board, allowing you to change and improve your technology stack to suit your customer's circumstances.

Digital experience today extends far beyond just a website. Consumers interact with dozens of different applications and modalities, so an agile CMS must support multichannel, multi-device content distribution. By breaking content down into modular components, businesses can rapidly assemble contextual digital experiences everywhere from their website, text message notifications, digital signs, billboards, conversational interfaces and much more. Acquia and Drupal provide unmatched content flexibility by offering fully coupled, decoupled and hybrid approaches for content management. Developers and content editors can choose the approach for their needs and tailor each content experience for optimal performance and presentation. 

2. Ease of Use Unites IT and Marketing on a Single Team 

Traditionally, marketing and IT teams were at odds when it came to delivering fast and secure  digital experiences. Marketers needed to deliver content at the speed customers demand. However, IT leaders moved at a slower pace to manage complex, monolithic systems. This led to a disconnect where CIOs and their teams were unable to focus on adding new value while marketers grew frustrated and attempted to bypass IT processes. They licensed other technologies without IT’s approval. The result? Frustrating, inefficient workflows and disconnected experiences for customers. 

Today, we know that enterprise content management is a team sport. Agility means rethinking the old, divided model of who is responsible for content and embracing a solution that serves all needs simultaneously. As the only enterprise agile CMS with low-code tools, Acquia makes it easier for developers and marketers to work in parallel to build and publish content across multiple touchpoints. Acquia Site Studio offers intuitive drag-and-drop, low-code functionality and pre-built content templates. Through this component-based approach to content management, businesses can be agile in launching new experiences while ensuring governance across all their digital properties. 

3. Digital Maturity Ensures Security and Guards Against Future Risk

While many offerings in the CMS space have evolved to embrace this more flexible approach to content, headless-only platforms often neglect the critical requirements of security and compliance needed to protect both businesses and customers from serious risk. Most importantly, newer solutions that position themselves as agile don’t deliver strong security and compliance needs. And when security is the missing piece in your tech stack, the entire operation is ready to topple at any moment and cost you millions of dollars in dealing with the aftermath of a security breach. 

Concerns around privacy and security have never been higher. Acquia’s Digital Experience Platform is secure by design. The Acquia Cloud Platform compliance portfolio includes: SOC 1, SOC 2, PCI, HIPAA, ISO 27001, CSA STAR, GDPR, and one of the most stringent compliance authorizations: FedRAMP. Each of these certifications represents our commitment to ensuring platform security at the highest level. Our commitment to security is why organizations like the IRS and the FBI trust us to keep them secure. Instead of monitoring and responding to potential threats, IT and security teams can devote their resources to executing new, valuable product initiatives, allowing them to grow faster and maintain trust with their customers. 

4. A Multi Experience Approach Powers Governance at Scale

Last year, the global pandemic accelerated every digital transformation timeline and made brands reimagine how they were reaching customers. In this new landscape, it’s clear that achieving digital agility requires an infrastructure built for both speed and scale

To scale successfully, businesses need a platform that provides a multi-layered approach to scale. As the impact of COVID-19 drives more people to embrace digital-first channels, organizations must scale site and application performance and their hosting capacity and continue to deliver fast, reliable experiences even in the face of unexpected traffic spikes. The Acquia platform provides secure and powerful support for your entire digital ecosystem through our Cloud-first architecture with continuous performance monitoring and security updates for resilience in digital operations to mitigate against changing demands and cyber risks.

Secondly, an agile CMS should account for the need to extend your business’s digital footprint, effortlessly supporting new functionality. The open framework of the Acquia DXP means businesses can readily add new functionality and capabilities to their existing applications. This could be anything from integrating content with commerce, introducing content analytics or any of the many other new opportunities that become available. 

Finally, creating and managing a portfolio of websites and digital applications requires the right governance. Our market leading "multisite management tool" created to help with your portfolio of websites and applications makes it simple.

CIOs and CMOs have one dashboard that provides a bird's-eye view of all their sites and content. With a detailed roles and permissions system, they can enforce brand standards and publish content across multiple sites with the click of a button.

The customer journey is dynamic and no longer constrained to specific channels or buying patterns. A new, dynamic approach to content is required. Only by bringing together all these capabilities can brands build deep, lasting relationships with their customers. Agile content is the way forward; Acquia is the company that can help.


Get your copy of The 2021 Forrester Wave for Agile Content Management Systems (CMS) to learn more about why Acquia is a leader in Agile CMS.

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