Web programming has been an in-demand skill ever since the internet launched. With the right approach, it’s possible for a website to stand out with its functionality, features, and aesthetics.
Yet there are many different factors to consider before you are able to realize your site design dreams.
One of the biggest is ensuring you select the right web programming language.
In that regard, there are many different choices available – and that’s what can make the decision a confusion one.
Throw in site building platforms like WordPress and Squarespace, which mask the programming language that’s in use, and those confusion levels are only further amplified.
The good news: this guide is here to help you make the decision, along with explaining the importance of picking the right programming language for your website.
What is Meant By “Right”?
Ask a room of web developer’s what programming language they favor, and it’s inevitable you will receive a range of answers.
There are two main reasons why. Firstly, there are numerous languages available. Secondly, each one possesses their own pros and cons.
There is no “right” answer in terms of what is the best web programming language in general. As mentioned, there are advantages and disadvantages with each option, which means there is also no “wrong” programming language available.
There is, however, a right answer when it comes to selecting a programming language for your website.
Yet this answer is dependent on various factors you need to consider, including ease of use, performance, support, and the targeted platform.
Why is it Important to Select a Suitable Programming Language?
There are several viable options available. Most of them will be able to deliver on what you want to achieve with your website development.
So why is it important you pay so much attention to the web programming language that is used?
Well think of the web programming language as the foundation. This is the framework which is used to showcase everything else.
When this foundation or framework is unstable, it will lead to various problems further down the line. The result: your website won’t hit the objectives you hope to achieve.
Due to this, you’ll have to either redirect your strategy or start from scratch – and neither option is desirable to say the least.
When you select a suitable programming language, putting together your website will be a relatively easy process.
Okay, “easy” is the wrong word, but you will have the necessary building blocks to create the structure of your dreams.
It’s important to pick the right programming language for your needs. That has been established.
Yet what are the main factors you need to consider before you conclude which language is the right fit?
Here are the main points to think about.
1. Ease of Use
Do you possess any prior experience when it comes to web programming? Have you played around with HTML and CSS a little bit? Perhaps you have built sites in the past? Whatever the situation, your programming background – no matter how scant – will play a role in the language you choose.
For instance, a small amount of knowledge about HTML might mean you understand syntax and layout.
Yet this doesn’t necessarily mean you are ready to tackle one of the more complex programming languages available. In fact, it is probably best to stick with a more accessible option.
What makes these languages beginner-friendly? While each one has different features, they each provide some core elements.
These are frameworks and libraries to use, concise design, and a clear structure to follow.
On the flipside, even though beginner-friendly languages offer plenty of benefits, they can also be restrictive in what you can do.
If your website will go beyond the norm and incorporate a range of advanced features, your best bet might be a more versatile, all-purpose language.
2. Language Popularity
Now you might be wondering why this is a factor to keep in mind. Why do you care about how popular a web programming language is? How does this affect your own website? Well, there are two key points in that regard.
Firstly, the more popular the programming language, the more guides and resources that are naturally available.
These can be a huge help when you’re just starting out and getting to grips with a language.
You might be able to find videos or documents which detail how to solve a certain issue you’re dealing with for instance.
The second point is that more people are using the language. Okay, that’s obvious. The reason why this is advantageous, however, is there are plenty of candidates out there that can directly help out with your site project.
You could outsource certain tasks to be done – although that’s a separate discussion point that needs covering later.
However, what if you want versatility? What if the desire is to use an all-purpose programming language? In this case, it may be better to think about a different language like Python or Java.
Why is this important if the main focus is on your website? Well, by learning an all-purpose language, there are still certain software functions you’re able to develop that can be interwoven within your site and other platforms.
This type of added function is able to help your site stand out from the crowd, delivering innovation and practicality to delight your audience.
4. Go it Alone or outsource
If you have a minimal budget and enough time to spare, you might be planning to craft your website on your own.
Understandably, this has its pros and cons. The positives are you save money and can gain a deep understanding of the programming language used.
The big negative, however, is the restriction in what you can do. Yes, it’s feasible to learn something like Python from scratch – but it can take months, even years to gather the necessary expertise to use this language successfully.
You cannot wait that long to build your website.
This is when outsourcing can be an excellent alternative. Going back to Python as your language of choice, a provider like ScrumLaunch (scrumlaunch.com) can supply a large helping hand.
They are able to build your site to your exact specifications, including any advanced features you want to benefit from by using Python.
Yes, outsourcing does mean you’ll have to put your hand in your pocket and pay for the service – yet this shortcut can make a big difference in delivering the site of your dreams without any delay.
There are no headaches of your own to deal with, no frustration while you try and solve a fiddly problem you have encountered. You can sit back and let someone else do the heavy lifting.
Even with outsourcing, it’s still a good idea to have a solid understanding about the programming language used.
The reason is that once the website is complete, you’ll be able to continue with making updates and changes on your own.
5. The Platform You are Using
Another important point to factor into your decision is the platform you’re using. When talking about platforms, these are operating systems such as Windows, Linux, and macOS.
Another operating system that is growing in popularity (and such, needs to be included in your thinking) is ChromeOS.
In an ideal world, your webpages will display exactly the same across every browser type. Yet there are various aspects to consider for this to become a reality.
For example, if you fail to check for browser compatibility when using HTML 5 and CSS3 tags, your site could behave or appear different across browsers.
6. Your Objectives
Ultimately, what do you hope to achieve from your website? Is it a simple business website that just lists some key details like opening hours, location, services, etc.?
Are you aiming to create a robust, in-depth website that is packed with features and responsive functions? Are you programming for the front-end or back-end?
Knowing your objectives are imperative in deciding on the right type of programming language for your website.
Before you jump in with both feet, it could be wise to play around with a few different languages. Perhaps you could watch some video tutorials to learn more about how each one functions.
The more you learn from the start, the more informed you’ll be when you need to make the big decision. As a result, you are in a better position to ensure your choice of programming language is the “right” one for your website.