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15. 10. 2015

What's the Difference Between HubSpot COS & a Traditional CMS, Which One Is Better and Why

As the buying habits continue to shift and buying preferences change upside down regularly, businesses have a lot more to think about when it comes to marketing their product or service. Just two decade ago, having a website was considered to be “the future approach”. Today, if you don’t have a website, you might as well pack your things, close your business and go home.


Around 9-10 years ago, marketers and businessmen were introduced with a spectacular option to manage their website and content, without needing to have any HTML knowledge or coding or anything else of that sort. This option is called CMS (Content Management System) and it was a huge step forward for marketers and individuals trying to reach to their target consumer via internet. It’s also worth to mention that those platforms where mostly free of charge (WordPress, Joomla!, Drupal, etc.)

As little as five years ago, it happened so that simply managing your content was not enough anymore. With the increasing use of smartphones, tablets and social media websites the buying preferences of people became more sophisticated in terms of content they choose to consume, where they want it to be and how they want to access it (desktop, mobile, tablet, etc.)

This is where Hubspot steps in with the revolutionary upgrade to CMS, which is called COS (Content Optimization System). HubSpot COS is a full, all in one content (I mean ALL content) optimization platform, which allows not only to manage your website content, but also automatically fully optimize it for mobile and tablet usage, while integrating with every marketing channel including blogging, social media, emails, etc.

Benefits of COS

From the first sight, it might seem that the two systems aren’t that much different if you decide to neglect things like time, resources, effort, UI and UX, especially when the COS is not free like the CMS and requires a good chunk of cash. Let's compare the CMS platforms with Hubspot COS:


Mobile/tablet optimization – While it is technically possible to optimize your content (which is, by the way, not only your website but also social media messages, landing pages, emails, blog, etc.) for mobile/tablet with a CMS, you will have to do everything manually for each of those aspects, assuming you will be able to find the right tools for the job.

Hubspot COS uses built-in responsive design, that is ready to tackle any device be it a smartphone, a tablet or anything else. You save yourself a lot of time, effort, resources, stress and IT costs using COS.

Integration – A CMS allows you to manage the content on your website, but if you want to go beyond that and optimize for example your social media accounts and blog, you will need to use different tools for each of those and find a way to manually integrate them with your CMS. Time, resources and stress guys.

Hubspot COS is an all-in-one inbound marketing platform, which gives you all the tools in a single package, all in one place. Moreover, it is easily integrated with ANY marketing channel that might jump to your mind. You save yourself even more time, effort, stress and resources here too.

Speed – loading speed and website performance will vary greatly depending on what CMS you use. It is statistically proven that a one second delay can cost you about 25 times the amount of dollars you make every day.

With COS, you will have the fastest loading speed than any CMS you might be considering. So if you make say $1000 every day and use a slow CMS, you will be losing around $250.000 every year. This makes COS sound worth every penny if you ask me.

SEO impact – Social media and mobile have a huge influence on SEO nowadays. Google prioritizes websites that are fully mobile optimized, even if they don’t have the best content in the world. Also, social media recognition plays a huge role here.

Comments, shares and likes are more likely to boost your SEO rankings than ever before. If you are using a CMS, you will have to incorporate all of this manually, while COS has all the social, keyword and tag tools already built into it, right from the start.

Personalization – More than half of the world population wants your website to deliver them the content they want to see, which in other words means, they want personalization.

CMS offers every visitor the same information, while COS throws in smart content, smart CTAs and smart forms at your disposal. Smart content is adaptive and changes based on each individual’s preferences, granting access to information they want most right then and there.

Let’s delve deeper into the smart content concept. Smart content isn’t there for mere optimization purposes: it also increases engagement and provides visitors with the most relative content, taking into account their buyer’s journey.

Smart Content

Imagine a visitor clicks on your main CTA and completes a form on a landing page. Do you really want to provide the same offer and have the same CTA when that person returns? Think again! Seeing the same stuff on your website is not what people are looking for. You can achieve so much more with smart content:


  • More information – by having smart forms, you will be able to gather more information about a specific lead during each following visit. The fields containing the questions already answered (like name, surname and email) will be replaced with others, giving you more information (what company do you work for? What is your position? What is your biggest challenge?) about the lead.

  • More offers – smart CTAs change correspondingly for each returning visitor and offer something different, something that the person is most likely to be looking for.

  • More engagement – visitors will be much more likely to engage with your company and consider using your product/service, if you personalize everything just for them. Smart content allows to automate this process and offer the most desirable content for each unique visitor based on the information you have, their buyer’s journey stage and previous downloads. More engagement directly equals more business.

We see marketing agencies struggle for days, weeks and months to find that tiny push, the sweet spot, the ideal content to increase their conversions every day, but can’t find it. In most cases, what they are looking for is available with COS and that is smart content and good, responsive design.

Seeing the relatively big investment you need to invest into HubSpot COS (especially when your CMS is free) might throw off and get you thinking that you have everything under control. You don’t need to spend additional resources on automation, which can technically be achieved manually.

But if you go deeper, not very deep, just a bit more, you will really start to see the immense potential that your company can achieve with COS.

And the best thing is, Incredo is always there to back you up and provide guidance on how to develop and design your Hubspot COS pages, in case you need any :)

Pavel Aramyan
Content manager at Incredo. I am a doctor who happens to have an MBA degree and generates content for an inbound agency. I am a do-it-all kind of person: When I am not writing, I am busy curing people, when I am not curing people, I tend to kill WCG competitions. Life is fun, and full of wonders: Do what you enjoy most, even if its everything at once
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