Database Driven Websites

A data-driven website is a site that can easily and quickly be updated by its managers to display requested information to the website user in the most effective way. Conversely, a static website offers its users information that is rarely updated, but a data-driven website will constantly be updated with more recent and accurate information.

Choosing the type of website to build is very important. Static websites are usually used to display information that will never be changed or altered such as a blogging forum. On the other hand a data-driven website is more appropriate for ebusinesses that sell merchandise. Companies that offer their customers the flexibility to shop from the company website must use a data-driven website due to changing prices, goods, services and other offerings. With a data-driven website, online retailers for example can easily change their offerings such as prices in just a few seconds. Another great example that a data-driven website slashes costs for ebusinesses is found in the manufacturing industry. The product manufacturers make must comply with regulations and laws passed by congress and other federal departments like the FDA. By using a database management system, manufacturers can track and locate regulations to smoothly continue with operations and update their data-driven website.

What’s more important is that online customers can navigate lucidly through a data-driven website (opposed to a static website) and can quickly find the information they need. With this in mind, customers shopping on a website do not have to go through unnecessary information before they find what they need. An instance of this is the way a customer can navigate through Dell’s website to find a specific computer they want without having to go through numerous computers. When a customer goes to Dell’s website, they can simply choose the criteria of their desired computer and the website will give them all computers that satisfy the criteria. This saves the customer a lot of time and frustration and boosts Dell’s revenue.

Customers, suppliers or anyone who uses a website that is data-driven is said to be directly interacting with the central database. The customer relies on a user-friendly database management system that is embedded with the data-driven website. For instance, a customer can click on the website’s tabs or links to acquire information used for decisions.

The benefits of a data-driven website are numerous. The first and major benefit is that changing the content of the website can be done without specialized knowledge or expertise. Managing the website can be done with minimal training. The website administrator/master does not need to know HTML or programming in order to make any changes and updating a data-driven websites only takes a couple of clicks all in a few seconds. The second benefit is the level of speed when the website manager makes changes. When hosting a data-driven website, changing the content is done almost in real-time. Thirdly, data-driven websites inherently have a great deal of scalability. To this end, expanding a website is very simple which leaves plenty of room for growth. The graphics, layout or interactivity of a website can be changed anytime. This is great for companies that start out small then turn into medium size businesses and later evolve to become large corporations. The fourth advantage includes reduced error rate. Data entry employees are bound to make mistakes when making changes. Anyone that is designated with maintaining a website can also makes lots of errors. As a result, the system will experience inconsistencies, bugs, and flaws that will slow down the interactivity of the website and possibly corrupt the integrity of the information posted on the website. Fixing all of these problems will require significant efforts and resources. Fortunately, data-driven websites solve this dilemma by making it easy to fix any issues with the system. Of course, this makes an online customer very happy when they don’t have to deal with the mistakes of the website creators. The fifth advantage is the efficiency that is created when implementing a data-driven website. In a society that experiences frequent changes in trends and patterns, updating new information can by extensive. For this reason, companies using data-driven websites can make modifications very productively. Creating or storing the background template, layout, design, interface and structure of the website needs to only be done once. When a website administrator leaves the company, someone else can replace him without needing to search hard for another website administrator. This will increase the reliability and stability of the website along with the company’s reputation and goodwill.