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php – Any disadvantage to using Zend for a very small website

Posted by: admin July 12, 2020 Leave a comment


I’m using Zend and want to know if there’s any disadvantages to using it for a small website. The website is maybe 4 pages: a couple of forms and a couple of static pages.

Will Zend still speed up development for such a small website? or the opposite?

Does the whole bootstrapping flow and MVC structure and routing overburden performance for such a small website?

I see it being useful for a big website serving lots of content, but for a brochure website, does it still make sense to use the framework. It’s sitting on the server so there’s no initial cost to adding it to the project, but is there performance and implementation issues (maybe longer implementation time) for such a small project I’m not noticing yet?

I’m getting suggestions for other
frameworks. I’m sure Codeigniter,
Kohana, and modx are great, but they
require time to learn their API. I
already know and use Zend so the
choice is between it and plain PHP.

How to&Answers:

I opt for the framework on nearly all sites.

In my experience, a site rarely stays as small and static as one might think when starting out. Using the full framework on a small site might seem like overkill, but it still assists in rapid application development.

Even if the site – as currently envisioned – is only a few pages, those pages probably share a common layout. So use the layout/template functionality of the framework.

Handling the forms and their submissions is easier in an MVC environment. The framework helps there.

And ultimately I find it aesthetically pleasing to truly separate concerns: bootstrapping, controllers, layouts, views, etc. Gotta put all that code/information somewhere. Why not in a set of standard places?

The most compelling argument against using a full framework for a small site would be if you had to actually “learn” the framework to do it. But since you are already familiar with Zend Framework, there is no learning curve associated to getting up and running; you get the RAD benefits right out of the gate.

In short, I find that it’s faster to use the framework and it gives me the firm foundation to grow the site.


It might speed up development, but it might be funny having a 27Mb library on a site with only 4 pages.


Do you really need a framework for a basic 4 page site? You say yourself that a couple of those pages will be static.

This seems like overkill to me. I don’t see whats wrong with taking a no framework approach to such a small task.

I’m not sure if this will speed up development either, and a 4 page website (with a couple of static pages) running on bare bones PHP will be much faster then its framework counterpart, that is assuming no caching.


Zend is slower, but (at least in my case) it speeds up development. You can always use Request cache on such a simple website.


Use something like modx for speedy development of such a small site. Just delete all the example stuff and throw your content into the content management system.

I propose this for speed of development. As for performance it is likely slower than a framework like codeigniter.

In response to your edit:

Q: Which will be faster for

A: Which are you more familiar with (Zend or standard PHP)? The final
answer depends on your level of
reliance on Zend to perform standard
php tasks.

Q: Which has better performance for static content?

A: Likely standard
php since you will only call the
libraries you need and no framework overhead.