Is a CMS or Custom Code Better for Your Web Site? - Which is Best for Your Site?
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Now that you know some of the pros and cons of each, you should be better prepared to make this decision. Some of your most important considerations should be:
Whether or not you need the functionality that a CMS offers. If you need the functionality of the modules available with a CMS, then installing a CMS and adding this functionality would probably be far easier than adding similar functionality to a custom-coded site.
How quickly you need your site. If you're in a hurry to put your site up, then a CMS is usually far faster to install than a custom site is to program.
Cost. If cost is an issue, then installing a free open-source CMS will be far cheaper than custom code, even if you pay someone else to customize it for you.
Do you need custom functionality that is difficult to add to a CMS? If so, this may rule out using one.
Do you need flexibility in being able to modify the layout and appearance of the pages of your site? If so, this would also rule out using a CMS.
There is one point that should be mentioned in closing. Paying a web design company to create a web site for you is no guarantee that you will be getting custom code. Many web design companies these days base the sites that they sell on content management systems. Most use free open source content management systems, and because they remove the copyright notice, which they don't have the right to do, you may not realize that this is what you're getting, and they may not tell you. If you read the open source license of the content management system that they utilized, you would probably find they have no right to use the code in that manner. In other words, they are selling you pirated code.
This may never cause you any legal difficulties, but there are ways in which it could haunt you. For instance, if you were to attempt to sell the site, the buyer might find out that it was constructed with pirated code. Beware, especially if you're being offered a site with a lot of functionality, for a very low price. Chances are it will be based on a CMS.
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