When it comes to building a new website, business owners are faced with a tough decision. Given the wealth of innovative open source technologies available, it can be tempting to choose one and start building without much thought.
In this article, we’ve compiled a list of the various pros and cons that come with building a website using open source technology to help business owners navigate this process.
Pro: Cost-Effective in the Short-Term
Typically, they are no upfront costs associated with using open source software. In the context of building websites, there will often be a time investment required to understand the platform. Even in this case, free resources that are available online can significantly reduce the need to spend hours learning how to manage content.
Con: Less Cost-Effective in the Long-Term
Although the upfront costs associated with open source software are non-existent, your team should still expect to spend valuable resources maintaining and updating the site. When bugs appear or when integrations fail, the burden of solving the issue will be felt internally. The time and money required to keep your site afloat can end up outweighing the initial low overhead.
Pro: Constant Improvement
Most open source site platforms are supported by robust networks of experienced developers. The communities that spring up around these products tend to become hotbeds for innovation and progress. As a result, many of these software tools are well-suited for regular enhancements that can have enormous impact on the performance of your website.
Con: Unreliable Support
Unlike commercial or proprietary software, open source platforms cannot guarantee consistent technical support. As new updates are added to your open source software, new problems will often follow. Without adequate guidance or the right expertise, complications with the product can become more common than positive benefits.
Using open source code can provide a remarkable amount of freedom. Many proprietary or commercial site packages will include rules for strict adherence to certain guidelines. With open source technology, you are free to modify the codebase to fit your specific needs. This can be a huge benefit, especially for companies that operate in niche markets or have very particular needs for their site.
Con: Security Concerns
On the flip side, the lack of structure that comes with using open source software lends itself to security concerns. It is impossible to know that each developer working on this free-to-use technology has your best interests in mind. When using close software, you are in a much safer position, because only your dedicated group of developers can view and edit the code.
Evaluate Your Software Needs
The reality of the situation is that open source software can work exceptionally well for some firms, and extremely poorly for others. Companies that hope to avoid the problems that come with using open source software, but don’t have the in-house capabilities to build a site, should look into staff augmentation as a potential solution. If that is the path you would like to follow, we would love to hear from you!
We distinguish ourselves from other staff augmentation firms by providing a wide range of services. To build our recognition across multiple platforms, we are currently in the process of sharing information about our services with a broader audience. If you have any questions about our services, please reach out!
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