Create a new website, or edit an existing one?

We have already repeatedly talked about how and how rapidly web development standards are changing. And yet, still a lot of our customers who turn to us to make corrections, add additional functionality or improve the design of their site, do not want to accept the fact that the existing site does not have the opportunity to add the necessary functionality, or to correct existing problems on the website. The proposed solution for creating a new site is considered as a money-squeezing tool. But the truth is that the technology of website development is outdated, or, in the development of the existing page, the standards of web development have not been met, which can greatly complicate and make the process of repairing and improving the website very difficult and more expensive.

This article was created because we consider it an obligation to tell you when the developer may recommend creating a new website instead of correcting the existing one.

The site was built on a embattled CMS.

CMS is a content management system that allows the user to change the content of a page or site with minimal effort. For example:

  • add and change pages independently
  • independently create a product catalog
  • create photo and video galleries
  • operate the warehouse’s goods and services accounting system
  • process incoming payments, etc.c.

Maintaining and repairing a content management system that is outdated will be expensive because the CMS developer may no longer exist or its module developers no longer exist. This, in turn, means that the developer you have approached on the issue of page repair will have to dig through the site code, write individual modules for every simplest functionality. And this can be a complex and time-consuming process. Since programming costs are for working hours, it can be more expensive to repair a website than to develop a new site.

Website cluttered with modules

Modules are also called plug-ins (from English plug-in). The module is an addition that cooperates with another program and complements its functionality. Examples include modules that allow you to display certain graphic formats, filter images in graphic programs. The main programme provides a way for plug-ins to register themselves in the programme and defines the protocol for data exchange between plug-ins and the framework programme.

If for each of the smallest functionality, the website uses its own module, accompanied by its own code, which gives some changes, then these modules can start to conflict with each other over time and this causes various problems on the site, for example, negatively affects the speed, security and stability of the website. If on your site every smallest functionality is provided with separate modules, then, most often, it is easier to develop a new website without using modules, but to write down the necessary functionality in the code or choose the base that already provides it.

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Custom-designed content management system

Before developing your website, you need to think carefully about what management system or framework you want to build it on. We strongly recommend choosing one of the most popular solutions that most agencies work with and one that has been available for years, such as WordPress, Laravel. Individual, of course, sounds good and also the cost, often, has been high for the development of such a site. And yet here is one important BET. We have already written about the future prospects of the website several times, and this is one of them. When choosing an individually designed management system, it is worth thinking about future needs – from various updates to technical support. What will you do if the developer who created an individual management system for you withdraws from the market and has not left any documentation? Will you have anywhere to turn for help if something needs to be corrected, modified or improved? And in the end, how much will it cost if the need arises? Most likely, it will cost you to develop a new site.

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Content Management System (CMS) does not support the required functionality

This may happen if the existing website is built on a content management system that limits functionality or you do not have full access to its code. Even if you are developing a site, you believe that you do not need any functionality, as the company develops, the requirements for the functionality of the site also grow. Since the content management system does not support functionality that currently needs to be integrated into the site, the developer has no choice but to offer to develop a new site.

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Non-standard solutions on the website

We have repeatedly mentioned web development standards and their observance when developing both websites and various web systems. By stuffing your website with a lot of different non-standard solutions that go beyond the frames of the standards for the development of the selected management system, fixes, improvements and additions can be very expensive, because it will take a long time for the developer to study and understand everything, so as not to destroy other functions on the site when performing any work, or even the site as a whole. Alternatively, the developer may offer to create a new website that will meet web development standards so that making further improvements is not a headache for you or the developer.

Code quality

A program code is required before the program can perform certain actions, such as calculating, displaying the result, responding to user actions, such as pressing buttons, selecting lines from the list.

The program code is a set of words and symbols in the programming language. Unlike humans, a computer does not have a “well-written” or “poorly written” code. But the way the code is written can have a significant impact on the process of maintaining the website. The quality of the code can be determined according to the following criteria:

  • readability of the code (including the presence or absence of comments to the code – arbitrary text blocks released by the compiler program);
  • convenience of support, testing, debugging and error correction, modification and transmission;
  • level of complexity;
  • resource utilization level – memory, processor, disk space.c.;
  • lack of comments displayed by the compiler;
  • absence of “waste” – the so-called “dead variables” (that is, variables that are not used), operators that are never executed, comments from previous versions of this code that have lost their relevance, etc.

If the code is poorly written, no documentation has been left, none of the source code management systems (e.g. GIT) have been used and the code is written in such low quality that it cannot really be taken over or it takes a lot of time to study it, and in the end it will be easier, faster and cheaper to write a new and high-quality code than to correct all the mistakes made in the existing one. In addition, most developers may refuse to make corrections to the code at all if it is poorly written.

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Viruses on the website

Simply put, a virus is a piece of code used by a hacker for personal gain. This affects both website users and owners. The task of viruses is to harm site owners.

All links are compromised. According to a study (PDF) by the company Acunetix, conducted in 2019, more than 87% of all sites have an average vulnerability, and 46% of web resources have a high risk of viral infection.

What are the tasks of the virus on your site:

  • inserting redirection code – the virus redirects to another site and the site loses users
  • inserting malicious code and infecting users’ devices – search engines will mark the site as malicious
  • placing ads and third-party content on the site – the design will be damaged, the script will slow down the operation of the site
  • connecting the server to the botnet and launching a DDoS attack – the hosting provider will limit the site’s traffic
  • stealing information (e.g. contact person or bank card details) – the site owner comes to the attention of the police

Although, most often, websites can be cleaned of viruses, sometimes viruses are allowed so far that the only reasonable solution is to build a new site.

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These are the most popular and common reasons why we recommend that our customers develop a new site instead of spending money on repairing an existing one. The most important reason for such a recommendation is that repair work will cost as much or even more than to develop a new website in compliance with the latest web standards. If you have noticed that your website does not work properly or needs additional functionality, apply for a consultation and we will audit your website to find the most suitable solutions