- April 28, 2015
You know you need a website. Now the question is: Do you do it yourself or do you pay someone else to do it for you?
First, let’s get one thing straight: your website is potentially the first impression you are leaving on prospective customers. Sure, you can Groupon your way through a web design course or you can build a website using one of the many DIY solutions out there (like Wix.com). You could even hire the kid next door to slap together a site for you in exchange for some pizza.
In the end, what you invest in your website is going to show to your customers, either in user experience, design or in reliability. Here are some things to consider when deciding between hiring a professional or doing it yourself:
1. Are you a web designer?
Obviously not, which is why you’re deciding whether to build your own website. But this isn’t a snarky question. Your business needs you to be doing what you do best: your business. As Entrepreneur.com puts it:
“Every minute you spend on tasks that are not related to the key focus of your business is time spent to the detriment of your business. In other words, every minute you spend focusing on tasks that do not contribute to the growth of your business and thereby increase your bottom line is time wasted.”
Hiring a professional web designer means you’re not only investing in the user’s experience on your new website, but you’re also tapping into a wealth of experience in content management, search engine optimization and best practices. It takes years to hone those skills, just as it takes years to become a good mechanic or a good dentist. As for hiring a neighbor or relative, Marvin Russell sums it up best: “Never hire anyone you can’t fire.”
2. Do you have a budget?
A well-designed website is going to cost money, but it isn’t going to break your bank. You can work directly with a professional or you can find helpful resources at your local chamber of commerce. Many have relationships with local web development companies that can help you get started with a website that will be the proper starting point for your business’ online presence. ConversionXL puts it best: “Can’t afford it? It’s a matter of priorities. You can always find a way to pay for things that are truly important to you.”
3. If it breaks, can you fix it?
So not being a professional and having no budget to invest in your business website, you’re set on a DIY website. Here comes the most critical question of all: if it breaks, what will you do?
Professionals run across issues all the time, and they have the experience needed to identify and correct those issues. A site full of errors and loading issues will surely repel potential customers, and trying to troubleshoot those issues will soak up valuable time you could be spending with your business. Hiring a professional will get expensive because they will need to figure out what you built, then comb through it for what is causing the issue. That labor cost can get expensive, possibly more expensive than having the professional build the site in the first place.
4. Am I looking out for my users?
Last question, and this one can be tough to answer: Do you have your customers’ best interests at heart? There are so many things to consider when building a website, including load time, how sites change based on the Internet browser used, user experience (navigation, links, buttons, etc.) and content strategy. These are all things that will either compel or repel customers. These are all things that professionals have in mind at all times when developing websites.
Not so much “can I?” as “should I?”
In the end, it is possible to build your own website and be successful with it. DigitalMouseDesigns.com sums it up:
“Yes, you can develop your own web site but a more important question to ask yourself is should you develop your own web site? When you hire a professional web designer, you not only hire someone who’s already got the means to develop a site for you which includes the professional look and the working functionality – but you hire that designer’s knowledge and experience as well … Will everyone who does it themselves fail? Absolutely not! But the cards are stacked against you if you have dreams of becoming an overnight online success. Even the best designer cannot do that for you.“
Cube Creative Design celebrates 10 years of superior service and quality. The Cube team includes experienced developers, designers and content strategists. Our job is to make your business look good. Contact us today to get started!