Old static HTML sites look quite poor today when compared to dynamic, data-driven websites, however, are they to be extinct? That’s a topic that I’d like to discuss in this article. If you look into the history of websites, we would see that for many years static HTML websites were the main way to create websites. Later, we witnessed appearance of Content Management Systems, probably the simplest and the fastest way to be present online. The initial purpose of CMS development was blogging. But with all the advantages and properties they very soon began to be used as a platform for any kind of website. It’s not wrong, of course, but sometimes it’s not worth the effort. I strongly recommend to objectively evaluate the potential of your company and select a platform according to your needs. You may easily need just a simple static HTML website instead of a CMS-powered monster. This dilemma reminds me the difficulty of choosing between a bike and a car. If you were looking for a vehicle to go on a short distance in the city, a bike would be an ideal solution, while if you planned to travel a lot outside the city on the highway, you’d probably be more interested in a car.
If we had to compare a simple HTML-based website and CMS platforms, it’s quite obvious which of the two has got more advantages. And yet, in some other aspects CMS is not that suitable for business owners. Ok, first thing first, let’s determine three key things in which CMS excel static websites:
1) A CMS-based website is faster and simpler to use. A lot of features can be added and modified within seconds while it can takes ages to do the same on a static website.
2) CMS websites are scalable. If you’d decided to expand your website and add new pages, it wouldn’t be a difficult job while it’s absolutely out of question when talking about static websites.
3) Updating content is an easy and enjoyable process. Even if you didn’t need to add new pages on a regular basis, just update the existing ones, CMS is the better option. So if you had a website to promote some product or service on the Internet, you would need to frequently update the prices and the items. Thus, a static website won’t be an option.
And yet, there are many advantages of static websites too. They are not that many in number, however, they are quite significant. Static websites are very flexible in terms of layout. The limitations of CMS won’t let you create a layout just exactly like you want it. Of course, it’s not such a big deal, but it’s still frustrating that you have to agree on creative compromises.
If a client can’t tell you for sure what kind of website he or she wants to have, here are three questions to ask:
– Do you need a database for your content?
– Do you plan to add more pages and include more content in the future?
– Do you need more than Home page, Product/Service page, About us and Contact us?
If your clients gives a positive answer to all those three questions, then it’s obvious that his or her company requires a CMS-based website. If not, don’t complicate the process and reinvent the wheel.
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