Choosing the right platform for your company website is essential to being on the right path for growing your business. Not having the ability to expand and integrate into other systems when needed, not having the expertise to grow the site, and not starting off from a good website base will limit your ability to grow leads and sales in the future.
There are 2 main routes to start, choosing a digital agency / professional web developer to build your website on a Content Management System or using an online web builder.
Content Management Systems make the process of building websites a breeze as they do what they say, they make it easy to create and amended content. All you need to do is upload the text, imagery, videos and downloadable files into them and the system will make the pages for you based on the layout developed by the CMS developer.
Hiring a professional to build you a website on a common Content Management System (CMS) will alleviate all the failings of the web builders. They will keep the system up to date and make sure it complies with any new standards that come into force. They will update the operating system, database software and CMS when new versions come out to make sure you’re always on the latest security patch. Recommend new integrations to optimise your online marketing channels and implement them for you.
As a digital agency we use a Content Management System to build all our websites, this makes it easy for you to add pages, images, downloads & videos to your site that fits into the bespoke design that we’ve created for you.
Our CMS of choice is Umbraco.
We chose this system over the other options on the market because it gives our clients all the features they need, and in an environment that can expand with them as they grow.
It’s FREE which is a smaller barrier-to-entry that it’s bigger enterprise level competitors and is very quick and easy to setup to start building websites.
It gives web developers, like ourselves, full control over the design, with no restrictions, so we can create and deploy fully bespoke websites.
It’s open source which means we are free to expand and adapt it to suit the needs of your website.
It’s scalable and will still perform at speed years down the line when more content has been added and more integrations have been implemented.
It’s responsive and will display on kinds of devices from mobile phones, tablets, laptops, PCs, and even big screen TVs. This is useful to make an amends and changes when you’re out on the move.
There is massive community support for the project, which gives it loads of features and packages to expand the functionality of the product and also great for support and advice if any issues arise.
Built on the .NET stack of technologies it’s powerful. There is no system that it can’t integrate with.
It has enterprise-level features should you need advanced personalisation, multi-variant testing, or marketing automation.
It’s search engine friendly and sets up the site so search engines can find it and rank your pages for search terms so users will click through to your site. We will help optimise your pages for search engines, so they rank higher.
It’s also secure. VERY SECURE. It’s built on the Microsoft .NET stack of technologies which are more secure than the more popular technologies out there to ensure all your data is securely stored and transferred.
There are many other CMSs on the market. From enterprise level solutions, such as Sitecore, Kentico & Optimizely, that are very expensive and have a greatly increased barrier-to-entry and. To other free open-source solutions such as WordPress, Drupal, Joomla & Magento.
As WordPress is the most popular CMS on the market, with around 42.7%* of websites using it we’ll go through it in more detail as why we haven’t chosen it to build our websites on.
WordPress is a useful and highly used content management system. It has most of the positives of Umbraco; it’s free, it’s open source, it’s responsive, it has a lot of community members and it’s search engine friendly. But it also has some drawbacks.
Most WordPress developers aren’t developers. They just implement WordPress from a design theme, this is why it’s very popular. But these WordPress configurators can’t amend and extend the functionality if required as they don’t have the knowledge to do so which doesn’t help your business moving forward when changes are required. Your website would also be restricted by the limitations of the theme.
There are loads of WordPress plugins, which is great, but these come with their own problems. Lots are poorly implemented. Whilst most WordPress implementors will find a plugin to fulfil most client requirements, implementing them can be challenging as when combined with other plugins they don’t work correctly
It’s also very vulnerable to attack from hackers. It has a lot of security vulnerabilities. Don’t take my word for it, please look at the stats from the leading security vulnerability data source, CVE Details:
Umbraco: 20 (at the time of writing)
WordPress: 376 (at the time of writing)
Web builders make it affordable to build a website, they help you create a website without needing any experience in doing so. They have lots of themes that will suit many businesses to start as a base that can be customised as needed.
This sounds great, but web builders have their limitations.
Firstly, you will have to build the website yourself. This is time consuming and can lead to serious frustrations with creating and fitting in the right content and imagery for your brand.
Secondly and most importantly, if it’s not created correctly, it won’t be searchable and appealing to your potential customers and it won’t generate any sales.
Thirdly, the website won’t adapt to changes that will happen in the future. If new cookie regulations are enforced or new security needs to be added, then old themes won’t be updated to reflect this, and new websites will need to be created (this happened to one of our clients and that’s why they came to us).
Creating an effective website is hard to do if you don’t have the expertise to do it.
Web builders can only be customised to a limited extent. If the theme chosen doesn’t allow you to display your content the way you want to, then there is no way that it can be changed to do so. You might see a creative way of displaying products on another site, but it can’t be replicated on your site as the web builder isn’t customisable that way.
If the right settings aren’t entered or the site isn’t setup correctly then the site will score low for, SEO, security, speed, accessibility, best practices and user friendliness.
Not creating forms or adding the right legal content will make your site in breach of GDPR and other laws.
In our, I’ll admit limited, experience of them, we don’t recommend website builders for professional businesses that want to grow, as they aren’t adaptable enough to fit businesses needs on a long-term basis.
For us Umbraco is the tool of choice as it has all the flexibility needed for a content management system as it’s robust and feature rich. It’s expandable and being open source makes it easy to add any changes that are required. It’s built on a secure technology stack to ensure your data is always kept safe. We’re free to create and design within it and has less drawbacks compared to its competitors.
Great! You've made a very good choice. Contact our team here ->
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