Custom Web Development


Your business website can be much more than a humble online brochure. Modern content management systems (CMS) are built with an extensible architecture. This allows them to be used as a base platform for custom development. Before a full bespoke custom development is commissioned, usually the first port of call is to consider a plugin or extension. Modern CMS’s support a vast ecosystem of plugins – third party addon software. These plugins allow your CMS to grow in functionality with minimal investment. A range of typical plugins include:

  • Website Performance plugins featuring: content caching, image optimisation, CDN integration and file compression
  • Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) plugins that can suggest content improvement
  • Security plugins to restrict access, encrypt data, manage access log and integrate authentication e.g. LDAP
  • Industry Specific applications such as accommodation & travel booking, eLearning and document management
  • Ecommerce plugins
  • Visualisation plugins such as Video streaming, 3D¬†augmented reality and interactive mapping

Whilst plugins offer a lot of functionality for minimal investment, they can come with many limitations:

  • One size fits all approach – they have to cater to a large, demanding audience which can leave them ‘over featured’ resulting in user interface (UI) complexity and performance sapping code
  • Variable quality – the code quality can be ‘hit and miss’, meaning the plugin might be slow, difficult to upgrade or insecure
  • Waning interest of the plug-in developer – the original developer moves on to other things and the plugin becomes out of date and insecure
  • Won’t upgrade with the CMS – often it is the code of a plugin that stops a CMS website from being upgraded to your latest version
  • Popular plugins are often subject to mass hacking attacks

Often the uniqueness of a business’s offering or it’s performance requirements dictate completely custom development of your CMS. The benefits to a bespoke app development in CMS include:

  • Bespoke user interface tailored to the best possible user experience
  • Purpose-designed performant code and database structure
  • Simpler code is easier to maintain and extend
  • As it’s custom it won’t be targeted in mass hacking attacks aimed at popular plugins

Custom web development in your CMS can be an effective way to give your website application functionality whilst retaining all the user-friendly benefits of your CMS.