Many site owners still don't realize all advantages of database-driven websites and don't use all abilities they give. So when do you need a database-driven website and how it will make your web-life better?
What is a database-driven website?
Database driven website uses the database for collecting and storing information. What information it can be? Various. Email addresses, contact info, clients list, products list, listings of real estate property, trade offers, images, and links, etc.
How does it work?
For example, you have a static HTML website for your business with posted information about the company, products or services, clients, and there is a contact form. If you have strong HTML skills you update your site without problems each time you need it. Otherwise, you hire a webmaster or use the maintenance services of a web design company. You write info in the text document, send it to your webmaster, he manually inserts it to the site. You store your products, clients, and contacts info in Word or Excel files. Probably you store emails that you receive from the contact form in Word or Excel files.
Is it a handful and easy? Is there an alternative?
In the database-driven website, all information is stored in table format of databases on the server, the script generates pages that are showed on the site as usual HTML ones. Usually, database-driven websites have an admin panel with a user-friendly interface where you can manage the site content, i.e. add, edit, or delete info by yourself, create new pages, or delete old ones. You can update your site easily each time you need it.
Requests sent from the contact form can be saved in a database for further use, you can edit them, group, and sort.
You can create a pictures gallery on your site and update it easily.
You can have a news box at your site and update it easily each time you need it.
Is it expensive?
No, if you order the site from a web design/development company that has good experience in database-driven web sites design that means elaborated and tested development process, time and cost-saving methods which give high-quality work within a short timeline and at affordable price. Ask your web design company do they make database-driven websites, if yes, look at the examples of such previous works, ask references of the customers - are they satisfied with their websites? - and if the price is acceptable move forward to your new website. Or search for another web development company using the same criteria for choice.
What else you should know?
Usually, there are such requirements for hosing:
- Must support PHP/MySQL or ASP/MSSQL
- At least 75-100 Mb of disk space
- Must have Database Client
- Must have Mail server