Are you ready to build a website?
Every business now needs their own website in order to boost their profile or make sales in an online store. It’s not really an option to do without – you will be losing business if you do. Globally, ecommerce sales hit $2.8 trillion USD last year, with that figure predicted to climb to $4.8 trillion by 2021.
If you want your own slice of the pie, a professional website is necessary, but how should you go about building a website? You’ll find that there are a lot of options open to you, but for the purposes of this article, we’re going to compare the DIY route, using a website builder or similar to the done-for-you option.
[content_upgrade cu_id=”2003″]Free download: What you need to contribute to a done-for-you website[content_upgrade_button]Click Here[/content_upgrade_button][/content_upgrade]
What’s involved with taking the DIY route to build a website? Looking at the advertising for many of the website builder tools, it often seems like an easy option. A few clicks here and there, then your business website is done. But is this really the case?
Here are a few of the basics you need to know about if you’re building your own website:
Let’s begin with some of the pros of DIY websites. A lot of people take this route because they are looking for a cost-effective way to build a website. Sometimes you can even build a free website, but there are some restrictions around these which often make them unsuitable for businesses. (They might suit you if you’re simply starting your own blog).
DIY websites tend to be cheap. They’re often easy to get online quickly, trusting you’re able to master a drag and drop interface, or that you know how to write code yourself. You aren’t required to have design skills yourself if you’re using a template and usually, website builders offer some level of customization.
Moving onto the cons of DIY websites, here are some of the biggest disadvantages:
If you’re not going to build a website yourself, your next option is a done-for-you website. Just like the DIY route, you have many different options available. To build your new website, you might:
Of course, there are pros and cons to each, so let’s take a closer look:
There are thousands of freelance website designers and developers out there, giving you a lot of options. You can even shop around and hire someone who doesn’t live in the same country as you, especially if you’re looking for cheaper options.
It’s possible to find some very qualified and experienced freelancers who will do an excellent job of your website. Cost will vary – you can expect to pay well for an experienced freelancer. In return, you should expect high-quality work.
On the other hand, finding the right freelancer can be challenging. Many people have had bad experiences when freelancers have taken a long time on a job, not produced work to a standard expected or even disappeared partway through the project.
You’ll also find that there is huge variation in terms of what is included by a freelancer. There may be a lot of things you still have to organize yourself, such as web hosting and the content for your website.
Have you ever checked out some of the bigger web development and design agencies? They often have large, impressive portfolios and big teams onboard servicing them. A large agency knows websites and they’ll have plenty of suggestions for getting yours built.
On the positive side, you can usually expect a very professional website, customized how you’d like it and set up for high performance. You’d expect a professional agency to have taken SEO (search engine optimization) into consideration during the website build and to have created your website according to best practices.
One of the biggest cons is that the cost is usually very high to get your website built this way, which can be prohibitive for small business. Agencies tend to run with high costs, so naturally they pass these onto their clients. Many businesses have also found that their new website build can drag out for months with a larger agency. They work with many clients at once and even with large teams, it can seem that it takes a long time to get your final product.
There are many smaller web development companies out there who run following various business models. For example, we’re a smaller company here at One Week Website. We operate by offering different packages to give clients options over how much they want included with their website build. Our simplest package is as our name suggests – your website is up and running within a week.
A smaller web development company will tend to cost you less than a large agency, but you can still expect to pay for their skills and experience (potentially more than an offshore freelancer). You’ll often find that you get more attention from the smaller team and that your website is completed within a shorter timeframe.
You’ll usually be able to get customizations that you’d like, although sometimes they may not be part of your package deal. Another very important thing to consider is your messaging – is that taken into account, or is a website simply thrown together? Some companies will help you out with devising appropriate messaging and building your website to suit (this is something that we take pride in).
With any of these done-for-you options, you should be able to get a website that you have control of and which performs to your needs, a key difference from many website building platform options. You can also choose someone who works with your preferred website type, for example a WordPress website, and you often have choices for a hosting plan.
[content_upgrade cu_id=”2003″]Download here: What you should contribute to a done-for-you website[content_upgrade_button]Click Here[/content_upgrade_button][/content_upgrade]
What is the best option to build a website that’s right for you? The factors to consider include:
There are pros and cons to both DIY website building and getting it done for you, so it’s important to know what you need first and weigh these factors. Which will you choose? Your online presence depends upon it.