PHP Or HTML – Which Should You Use?

I just read a blog entry that states that PHP makes you cooler…

Really?

In my opinion, and I have been around quite a while – as a business you are not in the market of being cooler by using the latest and greatest programming language. You are in the business of being efficient and protecting the bottom line.

Let me explain, back in the good old days (about a decade ago) – when I was learning and developing my first websites it was all straight HTML – not only that but one had to be careful about images because they had to be itty-bitty and we didn’t have the compression techniques that we have now.

Once – I went out in the world of business – website development and design, I realized that there was so much more to building a website than the design (flashing graphics and programming gizmos). The design is important but so are the other crucial elements.

Being search engine optimized, having a way to capture a visitor that comes to the site, being able to market your website by keywords and other such means. Those are the most important things.

Making your website professional looking is something I am naturally talented at and is very important – but making it work for your business – a marketing piece is really one of the most important things of all.

This is something no website designer/developer knows without experiencing the real world of Web Development – Search engine marketing and a host of other business related subjects.

So I Wrote the Article Because?

I cannot tell you how many times I have seen business owners – being horns waggled into putting up a site that is done completely in PHP- when they didn’t need it.

Not only is it a lot more expensive, but it also will cost you a pretty penny when you need to find another developer to work with you.

Nine times out of 10 times – if you are a small business, and you are being told that you need to have a PHP site, you had better turn around and run the other way as fast as you can.

No PHP doesn’t make you cool when you don’t need it.

Why should you believe me? Well, for starters I have been in business for over a decade and been quite successful.

Think about it…

1. Understand that your website is a marketing tool for your business, as that it will be changing and growing according to your business needs and direction.

Making sure that your website can be easily updated and changed is so important. Most businesses need to watch the bottom line and don’t have a mountain of cash to throw away. It will cost you just as much if not more to update this type of website, then it did to build it in the first place. If you need to bring in another web developer, they may have to come in and re-create everything, especially if your original web person wrote a lot of their own script.

2. Also I don’t care what they say I have been in this business a long time, and I know it is much more difficult to be SEO (search engine optimization) when you have these types of websites. The spiders that search engines send out don’t always have a way to index the keywords when you have a lot of scripting that they don’t understand – if your programmer/web developer doesn’t really understand what it takes to get the website search engine ready you are up a creek without a paddle.

Unless you have tons of money for paid marketing and advertising, and/or you are someone like Coke, Pepsi or Nike, who already has brand recognition – you will have poured buckets of money without getting the results you expect.

In some cases, you may find – you are looking at an empty coffer, and you are no where near reaping the benefits.

I am sure I will get a lot of flack from the die hard programmers that believe that everything has to be a PHP page…

But honestly – you can insert PHP script into your basic web pages. Don’t get me wrong there may be time you would want some PHP pages.

Why use PHP?

Put to proper use PHP can be a fantastic scripting language. PHP is a scripting language that is often embedded into HTML to add function HTML alone can’t do.

PHP allows you to collect, process and utilize data to create a desired output. In short, it let’s you interact with your pages.

If you need to embed dynamic text into a static website, you’ll find PHP extremely useful. It was designed for this, and it excels at it.

PHP is also very useful for integrating web pages with databases. Perhaps you will want a PHP page as a sub-page for dynamic content (text, graphics, video’s etc).

Make sure you plan out the purpose of your website before you decide – you do not want to be one of those business owners that is sorry they threw away all that money – and feels they have to get a new website, so they can get back to basics!