What Are the Differences Between DAM and CMS?

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CMS and DAM are both systems that manage content but they do so in different ways. Make sure you understand the ways they function individually and how to pair them together.

What Is a Content Management System?

Chances are if you’ve created a blog, online business or website, you’ve used a content management system (CMS). The content management system is a place to edit the pages of your website, particularly things like text and pages. Ultimately, users add or remove content from their site inside the CMS.

The CMS is one of the first steps in creating SEO web pages. It offers users the possibility to change things like meta titles, links and other valuable SEO details. It also stores media files, which are used to add images and videos to site pages when necessary.

Its media storage is a great segue into how it differs from DAM, as the CMS lacks sharing and other capabilities DAM offers.

What Is Digital Asset Management?

Digital asset management (DAM) handles all of a company’s media such as images, videos and presentations. The digital asset management is a comprehensive enterprise solution that organizes media assets, enhances file searches, boosts team communication and secures digital assets.

An image of a Canto ebook.
Click here to read a free ebook about DAM.

DAM stores content in a central location for quicker asset sharing and retrieval. Furthermore, it secures this content through things like permissions, administrative oversight, file encryption and image watermarking. It’s a tool designed to give companies a seamless way to handle their entire media library.

So what are the specific ways DAM and CMS differ? Here are the main distinctions.

What Does a CMS Do?

  • Publishes pages for blogs and websites
  • Edits webpage text and media
  • Manages website data and site structure

What Does DAM Do?

  • Secures media in a central location
  • Boosts sharing and storing of media files
  • Increases project efficiency
A screenshot of the Canto DAM interface.
The user-interface of a digital asset management system.

DAM and CMS Integrated

DAM and CMS are vastly different systems but they can be used in unison. By integrating the two, all media files needed for editing in the CMS are immediately available in the DAM. Integrations also provide a quick way to share files for someone in the CMS.

Canto digital asset management integrates with WordPress, Drupal and Typo3.

Remember, there are massive differences between DAM and CMS. However, via an integration, CMS and DAM increase their efficiency and make it easier for teams to improve their digital workflows.

Florian Plumeyer - Marketing Manager I Canto

Florian is an expert when it comes to Canto and Cumulus. He knows the products like the back of his hand and likes to share his knowledge with the world.