Database Driven Websites - Are You Missing Out?

If I asked you if your website is database driven or static, would you have an answer? When I talk to clients, this question is almost guaranteed to get a blank stare. Owners, marketing directors, and sales managers are too busy achieving business goals to worry about technical details and jargon - they just want a website that performs. Yet this distinction is important to understand as it massively impacts your website’s performance and the overall value of your investment.

(Free download: 9 Questions to Ask When Hiring a Software Development Company)

“Hidden” Money

Too often the upfront costs and hosting fees are the only consideration given to a web redesign. But how your site is designed determines the costs of updates, changes, how much time is spent doing all of that, and how your site performs. If done right, websites can even pay for themselves. I call this hidden money. Are you missing out?hidden-money.png

A static website rarely changes. Your content is “hard coded” meaning any maintenance or updates need to be done by someone who understands code and how to write it. That can get expensive. Add to this our 8 second average attention span*,  and the expectation that your website should be more than just a brochure on the internet, and the only hidden money you’ll find is what you’re spending or letting slip away.

A site running from a database can utilize a content management system (CMS). The right CMS can make updates and changes easy enough for someone in your business to perform without requiring a specialist or a lot of time.  Quick, easy changes allow you to use growth-driven design to target and reach your ideal personas. In addition, database driven websites are perfect for eCommerce, since products need to be updated on a continual basis. With all the tracking tools and technologies available, it’s possible to see your site’s impact on company revenues and determine its value, whether or not you’re selling anything directly from the site.

Speaking of Growth-Driven Design...

If you follow our blog, you’ll know that CWS loves growth-driven design and inbound marketing, and our clients are reaping the benefits. This new way of thinking about web design and marketing is best suited for a database driven website for these reasons:

  1. GDD.pngThe driving force behind growth-driven design is small, continual changes based on customer data. Dynamic websites with the right CMS allow for testing and changes to occur quickly and easily.
  2. Inbound marketing is all about reaching your target client with fresh, valuable content. Static sites don’t have a database to store your visitors’ information or your content offers.
  3. Data driven marketing and websites also benefit from personalization - showing your visitor the right information at the right time, and changing that information as they move through the buyer’s journey. When you use a static website, it’s just the same stale content for months or years at a time.

Give Users What they Want

Growth driven design and inbound marketing are all about identifying your ideal client personas and tailoring your website to their preferences, making them more likely to do business with you. User expectations for websites have changed, and more brands are moving to growth-driven design in order to meet them. A static website cannot provide your clients and customers what they want, but a database driven site can.users.png

Today’s users want

  • Blogs - sites with them get 55% more traffic*
  • Social media feeds
  • Downloadable content
  • Interactive experiences

Only a database driven website can store that information and present it to your visitors how they want and when they are ready for it. That’s how you give them a great experience and why they’ll choose your brand, product, or service when they’re ready to buy.


The world of websites and marketing continues to evolve and change at an ever increasing pace. From Google’s continued changes to their search algorithms, to staying ahead of the competition, your website needs to be able to adapt or you’ll be left in the digital dust.

A database driven site can more easily change and adapt to keep up with SEO changes and provide the rich, interactive, user-focused experience that your customers have come to expect. Not sure if your site makes the grade? Contact one of our strategists and we can help you determine that. Check out 9 more questions to ask while you’re at it.

Questions to ask when hiring a software development company