Today’s question, how important is the technology of the website that I’m looking to acquire?
The answer is: “Quite important”.
Websites that are built on industry-standard technology like WordPress or Joomla or on the e-commerce side, Shopify for example, are quite simply easier to maintain and enhance.
There are more options available to provide increased functionality than for those that are custom-built. Does that mean that a custom-built implementation should be completely dismissed and ignored, in my search? No. Many times custom-built implementations have a distinct competitive advantage which is why they were built that way to begin with.
Now it’s true that it might be more expensive to repair them or maintain them or find any knowledge at all about the the implementation other than from those who created it to begin with. That represents a risk category for buying a site that is custom built, but it doesn’t mean that you should entirely dismiss it. It is possible that their competitive advantage is the technology they have developed and it makes them a leader in their niche or marketplace.
One mistake buyers make is failing to anticipate future application development costs. They look at a P&L and don’t see much cost in the past 12 months because the system was built in prior years. Invariably competition, partners, regulations or user requests require them to update software or roll out entirely new releases. Not accounting for these costs can lead you to overvalue the business or overestimate future profits.