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Content persistence refers to how you store digital information while maintaining your regular content management activities. In any content management system -- albeit web content management (WCM), document management (DM) or digital asset management (DAM) -- how content is persisted is an important (but oft-ignored) aspect of the overall content lifecycle. Business users typically want easy access to content and don't tend to care where content is persisted. However, the mechanics of persistence have always been an important consideration for IT and system admin specialists -- particularly since these decisions can impact the business user experience, as well.
A content management system usually persists content in a file system, a database, a custom repository, or some combination of the three. Different product vendors take different approaches to persisting content, with some offering more flexibility than others. In all cases, you have critical trade-offs to consider before finalizing your approach.