We talked quite a bit about how we see the move as a developer in our previous post. What about users / clients? What does Laravel/PHP mean to them other than the technical benefits?
CMS (or lacking of)
Many developers (including ourselves ) find it awfully inefficient having to override features of a legacy CMS. But for clients they are inexpensive solutions that provide many common features (e.g. blog) out-of-the-box without having to reinventing the wheel from scratch.
For NodeJS, Keystone, Apostrophe, there are a few CMS exists for NodeJS. None of these really pickup the traction yet among the developers. On the other hand, PHP has hundreds of CMS (and counting) available in the market. A few of them (e.g. Wordpress, Joomla, Drupal and Magento) together account for over 70% of the CMS being used in existing websites. Many of these CMS have been around for more than 10 years, you can imagine the size of the knowledge base out there you can easily find when you run into problems.
Sustainability for the client
There were a few clients came to us with an existing product built by other agencies using less popular programming languages such as Ruby, Python or Golang asking if we could help them to rebuild their product in PHP. Surprisingly the reason is quite often that they just couldn’t find any developer who knows how to add to or modify existing features base on these new languages.
Being one of the most popular languages and having been around for over 10 years, there is no shortage of good, experienced PHP developer that seamlessly pick up the maintainenace and support of the product after launch.
Laravel is MVC Framework designed for “web artisans”
“for Web Artisans” is probably the essence of the framework. Many of the frameworks focus on providing as much flexibility as possible for developers to do anything. Such flexibility comes with a cost, where one will have to put a lot of thought and configuration even to build a smallest feature. That could be very time consuming, and require developers to spend a lot of effort in order to get good enough understanding about framework.
Larval on the other hand is a little bit like CMS for developers. It focuses on making it as easy as possible for developers to build products. Unlike frameworks on NodeJS (such as Express.js or Sails.js) requiring 40 to 50 lines of code building a simple route, Laravel requires just a few lines to do the same.
It’s all about efficiency
For a more complex product, 8 out of 10 cases NodeJS might be a more preferred development framework given its volatile performance of handing millions of concurrent requests without a sweat, and with a lower TCO.
However, for smaller scale MVP, product prototype or digital campaigns, using Laravel / PHP will save a good chunk of time and cost on development, meanwhile providing robust feature with reasonable performance. It’s without a doubt a more efficient, and for sure more favorable choice of development framework for our clients’ best interest.