30th March 2021

Static vs dynamic websites | Why Likely Loans moved from a static website to Craft CMS

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Lauren Irwin

Ask any marketer or content manager and they’ll tell you how important it is to have control of their company website; to be able to make reactive updates or build upon a content strategy with ease. In many instances, a website is the first point of contact for a user and for a marketer that means leads and potential conversion.

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The team at Likely Loans were in a difficult position with a static website built on a legacy tech stack. This meant that front-end changes needed to be prioritised in the development backlog along with a multitude of other deliverables to support the business. It wasn’t always possible for content changes to be made on the fly or at pace given the competing priorities.

The problem is, with websites built using React or purely JavaScript, CSS and HTML - it takes someone with the expertise to make updates to fixed code, which generally doesn’t allow for marketing teams to work efficiently. By having a static website, it meant that the Likely Loans website didn’t have a backend and so, no content management system.

Abstrakt had already worked with the Likely Loans team on digital asset creation and they came to us with an interest in Craft CMS. As Verified Craft Partners, we were able to share our experiences with the marketing and development team and provide extensive reasoning as to why Craft would work for them.

There was the option for WordPress too - some might call us biased but we worked on WordPress prior to Craft CMS and six-years ago we made the shift to Craft. Frankly, we’d never turn back. Craft offers so much more flexibility, security and ease of use for all involved. There are some that would disagree. WordPress is the biggest CMS and the most well known, but that doesn’t mean they’re best for a project - not anymore.

Security and compliance was of huge importance for Likely Loans. Anyone with experience in WordPress will know of its suspect security from time to time, so that was another big win for Craft. Whilst there is no perfect software, Craft takes platform stability and security extremely seriously and bugs are fixed quickly in their rapid update cycle.

It was important to us to demonstrate the usability of Craft for both developers and marketers, and how intuitive the content management system is. Alongside a Craft demo (to both the marketing and development team) which navigated through a screen share, we also built a demo site for Likely Loans to get a feel for Craft themselves, including SEOmatic and ReTour plugins, to see the capabilities of the tools they’d need to use regularly.

Another plus point for the team was that Craft maintenance isn’t resource heavy nor does it require monthly updates, it’s purpose-built to ensure that it works hard for a business and requires as little action from a development agency as possible, once built and live.

For Likely Loans, the existing website design was maintained. However, we were able to tidy up components, ensure accessibility, freshen styling and see to page hierarchy for SEO, such as H1s.

Since the launch at the beginning of March, not only has Likely Loans been able to make updates with ease to their website and start to look to future phases and campaigns, we’ve also seen positive changes in their Core Web Vitals, with the website shifting from “needs improvement” to “good.” This has been especially timely since Google’s Core Web Vitals update in May (2021), which includes page experience signals that measure how users perceive the experience of interacting with a web page.

The new page experience signals combine Core Web Vitals with existing search signals including mobile-friendliness, safe-browsing, HTTPS-security, and intrusive interstitial guidelines. This means there’s going to be a new way of highlighting great website experiences in Google Search, so the quality of web page’s and users experience of them is more important than ever before.

“The team at Abstrakt have been fantastic to work with. They are professional, forward-thinking and their communication throughout the entire project has been excellent - always approachable and responsive. Our project was delivered on schedule and on budget and we’re already seeing some great results. You should give them a call – I think you’ll love working with them too!”

Claire Smith, Head of Acquisition - Likely Loans

Interested in Craft or need to talk to a digital agency about your static website and need for more control over your content? Get in touch and we’d be happy to discuss how Craft will work hard for you and make content management easy.

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