Think Twice Before Using a Website Builder for Your Small Business Website. Here’s Why.
DIY website builder vs professional designer? Your website can be much more than the digital presence of your business. A well-designed website will draw and keep your customers attention, satisfy their relevant wants and needs, and achieve your business or organizational objectives.
But when it comes to creating your business website, the question is, should you attempt to do it yourself or hire a professional?
DIY website builders are pretty popular these days because of the perceived ease-of-process in creating a website. They’re also easily attainable with a low pay-as-you-go price tag.
On the other hand, a professional website designer will craft an expert website for you, and customize it to meet your needs. They can ensure your website meets your business goals.
But what’s more effective for your business?
Let’s break it down.
Website builders, such as Squarespace, Wix, and Weebly, are online platforms that provide pre-made templates for creating your website. These templates can be slightly customized to meet the needs of the creator.
Depending on which platform you use, the templates provide a drag and drop feature that allows anyone to place a variety of elements into their pages. From there, you can include plug-ins or widgets to get some of the functions you’re looking for.
For the small business owner that’s just starting out on a shoe-string budget, these DIY platforms are often the best option.
Professional website design
On the opposite end of the spectrum, there are professionals who are skilled and experienced in many fields including branding, graphic design, web development, search engine optimization (SEO), user experience, information architecture, and digital marketing. In addition, working with a professional gives you the benefit of consulting with and support from real people who are dedicated to your project.
Also, as opposed to a website builder, a professional doesn’t limit you to the confines of a standard template but can customize the design, layout, interface, and functionality to match your needs and goals.
The problem with website builders
The saying, “you get what you pay for,” certainly rings true for website builders.
A builder can make your website a reality, but that only happens within the confines of the builder’s limitations.
Templates ease the design process for those users that are looking for a quick setup. But you still have to fill each page with high-quality and well-placed content, and stay up to date on the website’s working status.
If you’re going the DIY route, you’ll frequently deal with a trial-and-error approach until you arrive at a website layout and design you’re comfortable with. That takes time and energy you might not have.
Can you also stay up-to-date with the changes your website builder makes to their design offerings? Website builders often change their font or design selections, most of the time without notice. You could suddenly have a font or layout on your website, that’s different from the one originally chosen.
Website builders don’t offer as much functionality, either. Usually, you’re limited to the static pages you’re given, with a few different widgets. You might also be limited to the sole third-party vendors the website builder exclusively works with.
Ease-of-access and a low price point are big draws for those looking to use a builder for their website.
But like eating fast food off the dollar menu, it may be accessible and cheap, but could hurt you in the long run.
Website professionals can help where builders can’t
The first advantage of using a web professional? You’re working with a real person. With a website builder, you’re working with faceless technology. Often, this can be pretty isolating and frustrating if you’re lost and have no idea what to do.
A professional designer can use their skills and experience to build trust with your visitors, guide them through your site, and take action. A professional also helps to maintain a consistent brand identity for your business.
A website builder will only give you some tools, but they’re not going to show you how your website can operate at it’s fullest capacity and help your business in the long run. In the end, your website should be just as accessible and incredible as the business itself.
Your website is more than just looks
A website should be leveraged to its fullest capacity and in alignment with business goals.
You have a bottom line to meet, so a website should be more than a poster and answering machine.
A professional can also integrate business functionality into your website. That includes sales, marketing, accounting, and HR services. Just imagine if you could centralize your business processes within the digital sphere of your website.
Most business owners don’t consider the full potential of their website. It’s easy to settle on the main front-facing purposes like looks and information. But if your website is integrated with your other business operations, you’ll be able to optimize your processes and set yourself up for growth.
But hiring a website professional might not be for everyone
For professional work, expect to see professional-level pricing. When you’re just starting your business, putting a chunk of your budget towards a website may not be possible.
However, opportunity cost should be factored into any website design and development decisions you make.
By using a website builder, you’re still putting in the time and effort to create and maintain your website. Or if you’re not doing it, someone on your team is. Time is money. Can you afford the necessary resources to properly create and maintain your website while still managing all the operations of your organization?
Hiring a professional is an investment, but think about what you could be saving in the long run.
Leverage your website for all it's worth
Optimum Web Design can maximize the return on your website investment. Getting started is easy and even comes with a free 30-minute consultation. Steer clear of website builders and get some digital expertise for your small business website.Get Started