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Your website drives your business, but what technology fuels it?

3 MIN READ   Web

Whitelaw Mitchell Staff By Álvaro Espinoza
Lead Developer

website development
These days, businesses are approached from all angles all the time about potential technology upgrades online that are “must have” and you absolutely “can’t live without”.

React, Angular, Wix, Magento. From web applications to content management, ecommerce platforms and developer languages… the list is never-ending. It can be overwhelming for business professionals to navigate their website’s software and hardware needs. But, if your website is what drives your business, what technology do you actually need to fuel it?

With technology, is newer always better?

No, this usually isn’t the case. Consider this: have you heard of Cobol? Cobol is a language created in 1959, but many bank institutions are still using it today. Of course, it is necessary to keep the software up to date—banks aren’t using the 1959 version, after all. But, the foundational technology still serves a purpose.

Every year as new technology is released many businesses feel the need to upgrade their website software when this may not be necessary. If banks can use technology that is six decades old, you should think twice before adapting the newest technology for your business. Upgrading just for the sake of an upgrade isn’t usually a good idea. In fact, in the long run the less dependent you are on trendy technology, the better your website will preform.

Let’s pretend your website is a car. Everyone’s heard the old the unfortunate truth about the value of a new car: as soon as you drive a new car away from the dealership, it’s already decreased in value dramatically.

Technology often operates on the same premise. While you’re reading this, five new technologies are being created and your web application with brand new and trendy software is becoming obsolete. It can be tempting to invest in what’s new and trendy, but trends and fades also come with a risk of their own.

Consider our new car. Imagine you just bought the latest model that actually drives without an engine car because our hypothetical car company “Texlam” says it is the future. This engineless car is expensive, but you’ve been assured by Texlam that it’s the way of the future and it will be a worthwhile investment in the long run.

But here’s what happens next.

A few months later, Texlam decides not to make this car anymore, because they found a sensorial-driving car, and now your engineless car has started to present some failures. Who is going to help you? The few garages who know how to fix engineless cars, are now serving sensorial-driving cars instead. Researching what is wrong with your car proves fruitless, as the technology is so new, there aren’t enough experts out there who can help shed light on the problem. You eventually become more and more frustrated, and regret upgrading to this new technology all together.

Cars, like websites, need a lot of maintenance.

Keeping your website up to date is imperative. Like a car, annual maintenance on your website will prevent more costly and complicated repairs in the future. The key, however, is to choose to invest in website technology and applications that are reliable, well maintained, and proven effective.

So, what should you consider when it comes to investing in website technology for your business?

  • How long has the technology been around? Is the developer still supporting the technology with updates? If not, don’t even consider it for your business.
  • Are there lots of other companies using the technology? Are their support and repair businesses that service the technology? Sometimes software breaks, and you need to know where to go to get it fixed before installing it on your website.
  • Is the technology is flexible enough, it’s not just being used for a single purpose? If you go for single-purpose technology, amending it in the future as your business grows and adapts to market chances can be extremely costly and time consuming. We recommend always working with technology that has multiple purposes or functions.

You need a trusted motor mechanic

Automated website builders like Wix, Weebly, or Squarespace are not the kind of long term technology investment that you should look for, for your business. Consider our car again: sometimes we choose a DIY solution to save money, and from time to time this can pay off, but we don’t know if we made the right choice… Until the check engine light comes on.

Value your website the same as you do your vehicle. You take your car to a trusted mechanic, do the same with your website. Digital agencies, much like mechanics, can provide holistic solutions. We build websites using foundational technologies that will keep your business running reliably, and optimised for performance.

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Whitelaw Mitchell staff By Álvaro Espinoza
Lead Developer

 

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