Providing the best content for your users is essential, multi-sourcing lets you hand pick all of the content you want from varying vendors to create a mix of as many different elements as you want at a fraction of the cost and time that would otherwise have been spent on developing the relevant software, multi-sourcing also saves you from becoming ‘locked-in’ with a single vendor giving you room to maneuver.
With multi sourcing as with anything there are a fair number of positives and drawbacks to consider before diving in head first. Firstly there are many different vendors that you could use, this provides both variety and freedom to barter but combining a variety of software from different companies can prove problematic with a multitude of compatibility conflicts. Oil and water don’t mix, sometimes that may feel like the case when trying to get two pieces of opposing software to work together in one website. Software is designed in isolation, meaning that it is not intended to work with any other software so when working with a host of different vendors that will provide all of the different content that you want, communication from the very beginning between yourself and the vendors and amongst the vendors themselves is essential to save time and get all of the components working together at maximum performance.
When you are combining software from different sources it is also important to consider the aesthetics and feel of the site, the user must be able to traverse the site seamlessly without noticing that it is in fact a collection of work from different companies rather than a single organic entity, there are various ways to do this, iFrame for example, inserting one webpage into another is a very popular method or creating gateways between sites so that users are actually transported between different sites without being aware of it because they look the same, these sites can even be hosted differently.
Keeping the illusion that the website is one whole and maintaining the peak of customer convenience go hand in hand when considering how to structure your site, users should only have to log in once and still be able to access all of the different content on the site, they should also only have to have one ‘money’ account, whether this is real money or virtual, players should be able to use all of their money in any of the games and not have to transfer money around accounts that correspond to the different vendors that your site houses.
Just as having a single wallet is important to players, having a single analysis and data storage centre for the entire of your site should be important to you! Learning your sites user habits and activity can really improve the services you provide and help you provide tailored promotions to likely clients, overall improving the user experience on your site and hopefully the usage and engagement of your site as well.
Multi-sourcing is a great way to make the most out of your site and offer a diverse and interesting mix of content, even with the problems that can be found when dealing with multi-sourcing, it is an inventive way of creating the site that you want at a reduced cost.