What are dynamic and static websites and what are their differences?

dynamic & static websites

What are dynamic and static websites and what are their differences?

As you may already know, there are two types of websites, namely Static and Dynamic websites. These are way different from each other as discussed in the content below.

What is a static website?

Static website means a website where content is fixed on all website pages. That means each page is coded in HTML and gives the same content to all visitors. These types of websites are so basic in terms of features and take less development time.

These types of websites are the easiest to create since they require simple HTML and some simple styling with CSS if necessary and publishing them to the web server.  They don`t have databases of any kind since the content is embedded within the HTML code.

Information on static websites is changed manually and requires a technical person like a web developer to do the update. This means each time the owner of the website wants information to be updated, they have to call or email their web developer to help them with updating the information on the website.

When should I go for a static?

Am glad you asked, if most of the factors below relate to what you want then you should go for it:

  1. Your website won`t need user interactivity.
  2. Your website will be temporary with static informational content.
  3. You need to have your website up and running ASAP
  4. You have a very low budget for the project and you can`t afford a web server with scripting and database features.
  5. Your website content won`t be updated regularly.
  6. Fast transferring – it’s no secret that static websites can easily be transferred from the server to the client.

What are dynamic websites or database driven websites?

Dynamic websites or sometimes called database driven websites, on the other hand, are websites whose content is generated mostly from a database whenever it is requested for by a user.

Most large co-operations opt for dynamic websites since they are easier to maintain in terms of updating content. The website is designed in search a way that makes it easy for anyone to update content without technical knowledge.

The non-technical users are given a dashboard where they can update content easily without any hassle. Take an example of CMS (content management) i.e (WordPress, Joomla, Drupal, Umbraco, expression engine, Radiant CMS etc.) based website that has the backend dashboard that is easy to learn and interact with when updating the content like text, media (videos, images, audio etc.) files.

Good examples of dynamic websites include websites that provide real-time updates of stocks, forex rates, e-commerce websites, sports websites etc.

Websites of this nature contain server-side dynamic web pages whose content is generated by an application server that processes server-side scripts.

Server-side scripts are programmed in scripting languages like PHP, asp.net, cold fusion, Perl etc. The scripting languages allow web pages to respond to submission events.

The server-side script interacts with the database and generates content that is passed to the client browser that displays the content in HTML format.

Dynamic web pages may change according to the time of the day, the location of the client browser, type of user interaction etc.

User interaction:

Dynamic websites may have features that enable users to interact with the website like commenting, form submission, reservations, user uploads etc.

When should I choose a dynamic website?

  1. When you hope to have a number of web pages whose content will change often.

I want you to imagine having a static website with over thirty (30) pages and two-thirds of the pages have content that changes regularly! , as explained above (static websites) you have to contact your web developer and ask them to help you update the content.

This will cost him a lot of time and on your side, it will cost you some money each time you want the content to be updated. With a dynamic website, this is simplified since your website developer can create for you a way of updating the content without having to contact him. In conclusion, the content alteration process is simplified.

  1. When you have content that should be categorized and easily edited.

Let’s take the example of a news website that publishes news from various categories like sports, technology, entertainment, business, politics and so on.

This means all the content you publish should belong to a certain category and when you are publishing it, you want to easily choose the category where that content belongs. With s dynamic website this is as simple as choosing the category from a drop-down or a checkbox list.

  1. You have some elements that want to share across the website like headers, footers or even a menu.
  2. If you are willing and have time to go through a difficult development process and have the required budget to ensure that the project is completed.
  3. When you want to have a website that can easily respond to screen sizes.
  4. If you are a developer who wants to have a website whose code can be maintained easily.

Imagine you are a developer and you have a static website with dozens of pages and you want to make changes to a common layout style on a couple of pages, you would have to go through each and every web page to make necessary changes with would be very tedious. With a dynamic website, this is simplified since you can share a chunk of codes with other pages.

In conclusion

I hope the information I have provided above has helped you get a clear picture of the differences between a static and dynamic website and their definitions. If you have any question regarding the same topic, don’t hesitate to leave a comment below and I will be glad to answer them soonest.




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