Ever seen those ads promising to be the cheapest, easiest way to create a successful online store or website of some kind? While seeming promising and comfortable, in reality you’re left bound.
Software that’s been made to suit your business and/or personal needs might just be the better path to go, especially if you are cautious of the longevity and relevance of your business’ online presence.
Open Source and it’s benefits
“Open Source” software is transparent, free and doesn’t bind you to a firm. Users use open source software instead of paying licences for services.
Some popular examples are; using Gimp instead of Photoshop to edit photos or using LibreOffice instead of paying Microsoft Office’s expensive monthly subscription fee).
We developers use open source tools to tweak, change and improve as we code, allowing us to create software that will fit the customer’s needs.
No monthly subscriptions or hidden fees will hurt you or your business when going the open source-custom web software route and you’ll always have a developer on it if there’s something you are not happy with.
Custom software- the gain is in the name
Businesses who opt for commercial-off-the-shelf solutions when it comes to software often end up having holes in their functionality in the long run.
This means that a company’s specific business processes rarely catered for with a commercial solution and flexibility is essentially non-existent. Having a flexible system provides for changes to be made a whole lot easier, meaning your web software can develop as your business grows.
Maintenance gets harder as time goes on and managing your web software while trying to improve SEO can become a pain in the backend with off-the-shelf solutions.
Having your software suit your workflow can thus be arduous when working with a platform that provides a set structure.
It’s great if you really just want to get yourself out there as fast as possible- but software is like cinderella’s glass shoes, it only really fits the one it’s been made for.
The dangers of bad code
Commercial cookie-cutter solutions spit bad code like volcanoes. This again, makes SEO so much harder and eventually damages your business’ online presence.
Google tracks down nonsense code which might result in your site not showing up in search results or being the last result to show up.
I mean, nobody clicks to the very last page of search results…Ideally, you want your site to be listed on the very first page.
Cuffed to quick-fix firms
It’s worth considering your dependence before choosing an “easy” off-the-shelf solution. If you opt for an easy solution, you’ll be stuck with them for as long as your site is online.
You’ll have to pay their monthly fee and provide the perfect space for them to plaster their ads all over your hard work.
If this doesn’t bother you, you’ll probably be just fine with your website but bear in mind- if the firm closes your website is gone with it, too.
So, what should you choose?
Choose the solution that suits you. If you are just looking to get yourself out there for now, just to spread the word, a quick-fix is probably fine.
Although we would, from our personal experience as professional developers, recommend a quality custom solution if you are interested in investing in a successful long run.