Web content gets organized

As information continues its shift to the Web, the need to manage that data is ever increasing. A recent announcement by Lotus Software from IBM of the release of its Web Content Management Solution is aimed at meeting that very objective.

The solution is being offered as a product or is available as a bundled service solution. It is primarily aimed at medium- to large-sized enterprises that are looking to manage their online content in their intranet and extranet environments. Some of the main features include a graphical workflow processing tool, collaborative content creation, site creation and maintenance, personalized content delivery and e-commerce transaction support.

The announcement was designed to complement and build upon IBM’s aim at the enterprise content management space. Big Blue also recently announced its new Content Manager products, based on DB2, which the company says feature enhancements such as faster search and load capabilities.

Marcel van Hulle, vice-president for worldwide Linux sales in Toronto, said the demand for the Lotus Web Content Management Solution was created by customers who were experiencing difficulty in managing their unstructured data. He compared content management to data management, saying the product is really an extension of the latter.

“The solution itself (content management) is a set of products that are on top of the database technologies and handle different forms of content,” van Hulle said. The product is aimed at the telco, financial and media industries as the solution can handle rich images, film and audio, he added.

The offering addresses the Web content management needs of B2C, B2E and B2B, according to the company. It can also be integrated with various back-end data management systems, including ERP and inventory control. While the product allows for application integration for Domino, SAP and others, one analyst said it will likely be a good choice Lotus Notes users.

“If you are a Lotus Notes shop (and) you have been using Notes to drive any of your Web sites, this is going to be a natural follow on products,” said Andy Wazecha, senior vice-president at the Meta Group in Chicago. He added that while the solution is positioned as both a product and as a bundled service, he envisions the most demand to appear for the product.

IBM’s Lotus Web Content Management Solution is available now, and pricing will vary by engagement, according to the company.