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Why it’s better to develop web in open source (MODx, Magento, WordPress etc.)?

Open source web designSimple – if you order from X web development company or even worse outsource your CMS and shopping cart for example from freelancer in India who will use his Z content management system then what will happen if that X web design company or freelances one day disappears? Unfortunately that happens to really often. Now you have your website coded so that no web development company will be happy to develop your website or will quote you maybe up to 10 times higher compared to if your web would been developed in open source platforms. Your new web developer needs to spend hours to learn the new code and sometimes parts of the code may be even crypted so you pay the new web developer £££ just to tell you that it’s cheaper to start from scratch so in most cases in such a situation it’s a better idea to start the whole development from scratch on open source.

What is open source?

Open source freeware software means that the source code is not crypted and anybody can see how it’s coded, use it freely, improve it, develop on it. That means that there are many developers who have improved it during many years and big amount of very talented developers are committed to work on these projects so they get always better and better by time and it’s always free for you to upgrade if new and better releases come out. And then there’s a huge community of fans who have developed huge amount of add-ons, extentions and extra modules for open source projects.

Minuses of open source web solutions

Many open source solutions’ user interface is too complicated for end user as they are developed by geeks and they have often TOO MUCH in it so end user can find it bit hard to find the right place to do the needed task. Let’s take for example even Linux which is open source operating system – most end users don’t like it but it’s best choice for your websites server hosting. It’s cheaper, better and you can run the best PHP/MySQL based open source applications on it compared to more expensive and absolutely not better Windows and ASP.NET.

Best example of too overloaded and slow open source CMS is probably Joomla. I have compared best open source CMSs including MODx, WordPress, Drupal and Joomla in this post: Why MODx is best content management system. From e-commerce the good example is definitely Magento.  It’s huge, most resourceful so it needs really good server with lot of memory and skilled web developer to make it run fast otherwise your customers can make a cup of tea before the next page loads. And it’s more expensive to develop e-commerce web in Magento as it simply takes bit more time to get everything working properly in Magento. But from other hand is not bad at all if to leave out the speed and development time as Magento is leader number 1 e-commerce platform. We can develop on Magento almost any functionality you can imageine and we can even integrate Magento with your any other CRM or accounting software. Magento is growing fast and it’s powerful!

So, to summarise all above – open source is just the first best choice you make when starting the web development. But it’s also important to choose the right open source framwork on what to start the development. Shortly we can tell you that MODx is best for CMS and any custom built website, WordPress is best for blogging and news websites and Magento is best if you need multifunctional e-commerce website (if not then simple shopping cart can be done in MODx, too).

Some dark humor from real life

We just got yet another customer who cried that previous Indian developer didn’t deliver anything during 4 months. Well that’s the sadest scenario that you can read from this The Daily WTF post: “Maybe I Needing Later

We really do get one-two new customers each month who need us to fix and improve their websites coded very poorly and without any documentation by small outsourced company nobody ever heard so we either deny the job, there will be lot of hours working out how everything is built or we start from scratch using of course best open source software.

  • Magento and WordPress are exremetly flexible to use.

    As you said, with Open Source software, the code is there to edit and extend.

    One thing to note is that the platforms you mention have very large followings making them great for community based support. With smaller less known open source solutions the support most likely won’t be there.

    With a closed system you would expect a high level of support from the development team without needing to ask the sometimes misinformed public.

  • Having used both Magento and WordPress I couldn’t agree more with you. But all open source projects are not made equal either.

    Some are well coded, documented and supported; some are poorly written and will waste more time than doing the job yourself.

    Also some client don’t understand why you charge them money to build their website when you told them you were using a free open source platform…

  • Of course not all open source platforms are good and some of them are quite poorly coded but MODx definitely isn’t one of them. It’s beautifully coded and done from programmers to programmers that must provide user friendly result to end-user without too much hassle.

    To WP Premium Themes: I have met so far only very few such customers who have had issue us charging them and then using free MODx CMF but it’s not hard to explain them that that just makes the development way cheaper for them and results are same or better.

  • wordpress is best because it donot consume more time for doing anything on web

  • @daniel yes, WordPress is great for blogging and also for smaller CMS solutions but when it gets more complex in terms of functionality and when you need more programming to be done then MODx will be better joice… Read about the difference between WordPress and MODx here: http://www.redtoadmedia.com/blog/?p=345

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