Static Versus Dynamic Websites

In this post we shall talk about the difference of static and dynamic websites, pros and cons.

If a user lands on the website, he won’t see the difference between static and dynamic website in the browser, except the website link routes. But, it can impact on a website’s functionality and maintenance.

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So, what is a static website and why do we need it?

If you want to have a landing, promo, portfolio pages, that will contain 1 or 2 pages and don’t have to change the content of your website very often, the static website is the right choice for you.

A static website consists of HTML files. Each one is representing a physical page of a website. When you visit the contact page, you are viewing only the actual contact page file (for example – contact.html).

Even, if two pages contain a chunk of identical content like a header, the headers exist as two separate versions. So, if you want to update the header, you have to do so on each page (for example on home and contact pages).

This kind of websites were popular and built during the early years of the world wide web.

The use of Dynamic websites

A dynamic website uses server technologies (such as PHP), to dynamically build a webpage right, when a user visits the page.

After typing a certain web address, the server will find a bunch of different pieces of information (such as header, main content, navbar, footer), and combine into a single cohesive web page. A dynamic website is like a mosaic. That pieced together web page is then what you’ll see in result.

This way of building web pages is considered to be “on the fly” and has several benefits, which we’ll discuss now:

Easy updates

Since each part of a web page is separate, it is much simpler to update something all at once across many pages.

For example, if you want to make a change to your website’s footer, you’d only have to change it in one place on a dynamic website. Once you change the file, that holds the footer information, it will then be updated on all pages that contain that file.

Meanwhile, if you had a static website and wanted to update the footer, you’d have to edit every single page to make any changes. This can be a boring and repetitive process, that will waste your time.

Dynamic websites can be integrated into CMS systems, such as WordPress, and let you change your content easily. But in case of static website, you have to know HTML, to be able to change your page’s content.

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Posted by Edgar Hovhannisyan


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