website development

The pros and cons of outsourcing your website

Outsourcing is a common activity in today’s commercial world, and outsourcing a website is one of those that new business owners usually think about when creating their outline presence.

Beyond the initial website creation effort, a whole sleuth of activities (i.e. link up to search engines, website optimization) needs to be carried out. Thereafter, the site will go into maintenance mode (i.e software updates, new developments) to keep it running. This is something the website owner needs to fully understand and factor in.

In this post, we will examine the pros and cons of outsourcing a website’s development and mainteance for a small business owner. Below are some essential factors that need to be considered when starting on creating your own website. In this comparison, we take it DIY as the business owner managing the site by his/her ownself.

Complexity of your site. If the website is a simple informational website, this is something the business owner can consider to undertake his/her own self. However, on the website, there probably would be a sign up form to collect visitor’s email addresses, this is a security issue. A website with a sign up form is susceptible to SQL injection attacks. The attack would allow the attacker to gain direct access to the backend website contacts database. This could result in a personal data leak and attract the attention of the authorities. .

Time to market. All content management solution has a learning curve. As the website increases in functionality, so will be the learning curve. So depending on how much time the business owners has to focus on the website, otherwise it is prudent to simply outsource the development and maintenance of the website to a third-party vendor.

Frequency of change. Content changes from time to time. It is a minor text change, the small business owners can undertake the changes themselves. However if changes are in the form of enhancing the website, then considering a third party outsourcing provider would be the recommended way to go as it will consume a lot of the business owner’s time to research, implement, test and monitor these changes.

Frequency of updates. Business owners need to understand that all software needs to be update from time to time. Each updates need to be reviewed and updated. Once updated the website needs to be checked to see if anything is impacted by the updates. This takes time, depending on how many additional functionality was added onto the base website.

Data confidentiality. Data confidentially is very important especially when private data is concerned. Once a breach happens, data owners are obligated to inform the relevant authorities. Ideally the data owners (i.e business owner) should be the first to know of such a breach and not be the last to know, so you can better manage the breach.

In this respect, business owners need to fully understand how to protect their databases. If not, it would be best for them to outsource the development and maintenance of the website to third party vendors who would be in a better place to protect the data.

Note even though your website is hosted on a third-party hosting provider, ultimately the business owner is still responsible for the safeguarding of the personal data provided by it’s users.

Cost. Cost is always at the top of the mind of a small business owner. He/she is always looking at ways to minimize the cost of operations. Doing it internally could be cheaper financially, however, it takes time off on other operational issue. This is something the business owner as to weigh carefully.

As you can see from above, the decision is not a straightforward one for the small business owner.  The final decision to do it in-house or outsource, would also depend on the resources available and the environment he/she is working in – is speed to market important?

If you need further clarification, do drop us a note and shall we have a conversation before you embark on this important decision.

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