Three reasons to use static sites and get down to business

Image credit: Taehyun Kim

Three reasons to use static sites and get down to business

Setting up a sophisticated blog meant rolling and customizing your own wordpress or drupal installation. Even the hosted versions of these packages require you to learn the platform before you can blog.

Options like Medium and Svbtle, while simplifing the learning curve, have created another set of problems around ownership, branding, and discoverability.

Enter Static Sites

Static sites allow for feature rich blogs with high grained control while eliminating complexity.
They can be hosted for free on github, or for a few bucks on AMAZONS3 bucket or Dropbox.

I’ve been using a static site generator called Jekyll for the last 2 years and, as content creator, here are three reasons why you should too:

Launch Sophisticated Sites < 10 mins

You can launch a blog using a Jekyll and Github Pages in under 10 mins. The longest part of this process is you figuring out which of the many Jekyll themes you want to use.

This theme, so-simple, for example gives you a responsive design (so it looks good on mobile), SEO Optimization, social sharing, google analytics, disqus and a fine looking design right out of the box.

Upgrading to the latest fancy theme is simple - just copy the _posts and images directories to your new theme to port your content. If you want to tinker with the code simply clone into a Nitrous.IO box. and edit to your heart’s desire.

Focus On Content

Your goal as a content creator is to get your message to your audience.

Static site generators like Jekyll let you get to the meat faster by allowing you focus on the task at hand - creating and publishing content. Write your content using simple text files. Style it quickly with Markdown.

You can write your posts from any text editor or edit in a browser within the GitHub repo, or through a third party like Prose.

Scale without Headaches

If your blog goes “Big Time (TM)”, scaling a static site is simple - Do nothing. If you’re on Github you get autoscaling for free. On S3 you simply have to pay for the added bandwidth costs at the end of the month (on the order cents vs. 100s of dollars to scale servers.)

Need back ups? Simply copy text files to you backup location. This Blog, for example, has a revision control on Github and is backed up to Dropbox without my intervention.

Roll one out today!

If Jekyll is not your thing, you should check out Punch from my Nitrous.IO colleague Lakshan Perera.

If you’re looking to create more complex static websites beyond blogs you should checkout DIVSHOT from Michael Bleigh and team.

If you need help getting one setup feel free to reach out to me on twitter