Do not get a static site. Unfortunately, one of the biggest issues with cheap websites (especially in Malaysia and Singapore), is that you end up with a static HTML website. When I say static site, it means the opposite of a dynamic/easily updatable website. And sadly, most people don’t know that they end up with a static site.
But what is the fuss about static sites and why should you get dynamic websites instead? And why a CMS (short for Content Management System) like WordPress?
Also, why is a CMS based website more expensive? Isn’t a static site the same as a dynamic site except that it is more expensive? Read on as we help you understand why you should not get a static site. This article is part of our Website Checklist series, a set of educational articles to help you get a proper SEO Optimised Website.
Do Not Get a Static Site: An Introduction
Static sites have been around since about the beginning of the World Wide Web in 1990. HTML, the main language of both markup language for both static and dynamic sites, made its début in 1993, but HTML has remained ever-present since then.
PHP launched in 1995. And with it came dynamic websites. That means, based on conditions, your website’s HTML output changes. Plus you can store data. This led to really funky websites thar could do everything a static website could, and more.
By the way, did you know that Facebook itself was built on PHP, which continues to power eighty percent of all websites world-wide?
Our Focus Is On WordPress
While there are many ways to create a dynamic site, let us start the article by stating that we will focus on WordPress when we mention dynamic websites. Here are the reasons why
- WordPress powers 28.9% of all websites worldwide at the time of writing
- For Content Management Systems, WordPress’ market share is more than 50% of all websites globally
- More than fifty percent of the top forty web design companies in Malaysia (based on Google’s Organic Search), use WordPress for their clients’ projects
- We are WordPress experts
Do Not Get a Static Site: Get Better SEO Results
In 2018, we have 1.8 billion websites globally. With so many websites, search engines like Google, Bing and Yandex has to find a way to produce the most relevant websites to their customers’ searches. And one of the major ranking signals is and has been fresh, original and relevant content.
However, many web design companies in Malaysia (and Singapore too) are happy to just churn out static HTML sites for their clients. And their clients don’t know better.
After all, it is much easier to build a static website. And for clients, it seems to make financial sense. Except that it actually doesn’t.
What do I mean by saying static sites don’t make sense?
Well, for most businesses, a website should generate more revenue. Except that you can’t generate more revenue without fresh, regular content.
Meaning, you pay a few hundred dollars (or a thousand plus ringgit) for your site and it looks good. But with a static site, your web developer has tons of things he needs to do each time he updates your site. Which means extra charges each time you update your site.
Let us look at the list of tasks for your web designer/developer on every new article you need for your static site
- Create and name a new file for your new article
- Insert your article via the page’s header and body tags
- Optimise your On-Page SEO for your article
- Insert in the meta description
- Insert in relevant structured data as needed
- Optimise and resize the images you want to upload
- Update the website’s site map so that search engines can crawl your site
- Update the .htaccess file so that your new page will have pretty permalinks
In comparison, with dynamic site like WordPress, all you need to do is to create a new post, key in the necessary information (e.g. Post Title, Content of the Post, etc), upload the images you want and everything else is automatically done.
Do Not Get a Static Site: Cheaper In The Long Run
Frankly to do well with search engines, you do need to put in a year or two of consistent writing. Would your web designer/developer be willing to update your site every two to three days with your new articles?
Thus, while a static site might be cheaper initially, it will end up costing you much more in the long run. Unless you do not need more business (which will never be true), don’t start with a static site.
Do Not Get a Static Site: Have Advanced Features To Your Site
One other reason to avoid web designers/developers who provide static websites is the lack of advanced features. You see, unlike WordPress, you need your web designer/developer to code up a script for you to add simple WordPress features to your site.
Here are some examples.
What do you do if you need the following for your site
- A Gallery to showcase latest events/products
- An Online store to sell products
- A Membership Gate to charge for your premium content
- The ability to add reviews schema to your reviews
- The ability to dynamically show a different menu, sidebar or footer, depending on which category of article your visitor is on.
As you can see, it will take a lot of effort as well as money to add these simple features to your static site.
Before you finalize the contract with your web designer/developer, ask them if it is a static site. Even if it is a bespoke static site, the benefits of a turnkey dynamic WordPress site still outweighs the static site.
Talk to us more if you are keen on a website or know of friends who want to properly built website.
Nowadays, I build and maintain turnkey and bespoke sites. I also write guides and review tools that makes your sites, better. Drop me a message via LinkedIn if you wanna chat more 🙂