There are four types of mobile CMSes; traditional monolithic CMSes, mobile backend as a service (MBaaS), decoupled CMSes, and headless CMSes. For mobile apps, a traditional CMS is no longer the recommended choice.
A traditional monolithic CMS tightly weaves content, code, and presentation elements together in one platform. This was a major advancement in the early 2000s but now poses problems for developers who require more flexibility.
MBaas is an all-in-one solution to content, analytics, user management, storage, and more. MBaaS enables data reuse through APIs but can suffer from vendor lock-in, as all services are tightly coupled.
Many traditional CMSes have moved towards a decoupled approach to content by adding APIs on top of their existing platforms. This makes it easier to reuse content for a mobile app. However, a decoupled CMS still has a default frontend layer connected to it, which can create hurdles for advanced customization needs.
A headless CMS is a content management system that disconnects where the content is stored (the “body”) from where it is presented (the “head“). Content is stored as structured data and accessed via an API. Although app-building requires developer resources, you gain freedom and control in how you reuse and remix your content.