Self-Build Website Vs Designer

June, 2018
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I am often asked in my line of work whether it is better to have a web designer or to do a self-build.  Here I will talk about the merits and pitfalls for both.

Self-Build Website or Web Designer

1. Cost

The winner here is the self-build website.  It costs less to host per month and because you can build it yourself on pretty good templates there is not much design experience necessary.  However, when you add in the time spent on building a website yourself, you may find the cost per hour vs what you could be doing to market your business during the build time is not actually worth it.

2. Flexibility

Whilst self-build websites give you the flexibility to do what you want to do without waiting for a web designer to fit you into their schedule, successful business, when they get busy, do not necessarily want to be managing their own websites.

Depending on the complexity of your business and what you want to achieve a self-build website simply won’t have the capabilities required to make it work efficiently.  Look at employing a website planner or digital marketing expert to ensure you are building a website with all the capabilities you require that is within budget.

3. Expertise

Good website designers have years of expertise behind them, they take less time to put a website together meaning you will be up and running faster than doing one yourself.  Often the overall look is slicker on built websites as you have access to their design team

4. Technology

Self-build websites, due to the volume of people using them, are having larger investments in their infrastructure.  This can save on expensive programming costs of website developers as they might have to develop the latest technology for your website that you would be getting as part of the cost with a self-build website.

Website designers can design software for business where a bespoke option is necessary for the effectiveness of building a website.

Adding coding –  Sometimes you may want to add code to websites either to add heat maps, tracking etc.  Unless you know what you are doing this can be complicated on a self-build website.  This can be done by digital marketers at a cost but website designers will do this as a matter of course if you have asked them for it.

5. Online Strategy

When developing a website you need to understand how you intend to use it.  The website needs to support offline processes, marketing and customer journey.  Working with a professional web developer ensure your website is set up for long term success and will resonate with your audience.

What to watch out for

SEO – this is one of the most important factors of building a website.  Usually charged as an extra by website designers, it is imperative you get it right.  The difference between SEO done correctly and incorrectly is the amount of money you make off your site as a result of SEO.  SEO done correctly should not only generate income but also steal trade from your competitor’s websites.

Capture Cart – These extras can be included in a self-build website like shopify.com, however, there are many packages dependent upon your requirements that can be added on free of charge to existing website designer websites.

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