Use our site builders! Use our inexpensive software! Take control of your own site! We offer you this, that and everything else!
You use a site builder for your site. They say take control of your own website! Save money! All sounds pretty cool. Can you have originality with a site builder? Many times, yes. IF you know how to build a website. If you don’t, won’t you just put together the basic template? How is that original if most are going this same route?
You move into a cookie cutter housing development. Builder grade materials used throughout. You invite people over… when they get into the neighborhood how do they tell the difference between your house and everyone else’s at first glance? You may settle for this, but it will keep gnawing at you. If your website is builder grade, how does that help your company’s branding? How does that help with having any kind of originality?
Let’s be real, web design will cost more than builder grade basic site builders. A web designer could very well help get you the most out of your site builder, because they understand how they work.
There are many reasons why I don’t recommend site builders. The sameness, the standard SEO you get, not knowing other ways you can help your site in the SEO world, branding, customization, all of the things that make you stand out with your message, you can’t always get from a site builder. Some are better than others, some just shouldn’t exist. It is a great way for a web hosting company to make money off of you because for many of them, if you want to leave for a new, faster web hosting company… you start building your website from the beginning. Seriously?
Many Mobile phone companies lock you into deals to hold onto you. Then you find you can’t always get service where you live and/or work. When your contract is up you move to a different carrier. You will have to add in all your contacts, settings, photos and apps when you start with a new carrier. How costly is it if you are starting over with an entire website and not just contacts on a new carrier phone?
Having your own website (not a site builder site) means you can go anywhere you want with it. You don’t have to rebuild it from scratch.
How can you get the most out of your SEO if you don’t know what is out there to help you? A site builder has everyone of their customers doing the same SEO method, and consistency is what is needed, right? YES! What you have to keep in mind though is when was the last time they updated their SEO methods? Do they match the latest set by Google, Bing and Yahoo? The search engines keep changing their methodologies, how soon after a search engine change do the site builders update their own SEO methods? A web designer can on the fly. Just yesterday Google announced Google+ is going away. Look at the site builder companies. Do they have that info in their site builder’s seo section?
You have a problem with your site, you’ve spoken with someone before about it, and when you called this time you got someone new. All of a sudden you’re explaining your whole history to the new person. Will that person be someone hired to answer a phone having only some training, or will that person be someone with knowledge that can immediately help you? If they can’t, how many hoops do you have to jump through to get to the next level tech, all so you can start explaining the history all over again?
If you’re building a website for your business, do you want originality, or do you want sameness because you lack the skills, or because the site builders offer only a handful of designs that everyone is using?
Do you want a human being who has kept up with the latest and greatest SEO methods, or someone where a template was set up – who knows how long ago – and you hope for the best that it is up to date?
Do you want to make a phone call and speak to the same person again and again, or be one of thousands of people that call in on a given day to have your website be looked up, verified, maybe get by with the front line of defense?
The answers are easy. So what is holding you back? Your budget in most cases.
So many unanswered questions. Not really. Some you already know which way you want to go (ie, not sameness, but personalized), others have been answered throughout this 4 part web series on Website Investment. Not all web designers are the same or are right for you and your project. You have expectations, as does the web and search engines for how a site should be built. The realities of getting them all to work together is in itself a large task. Not to mention how you want a site to look, what you expect it to do for you, all on your budget.
Spending some time before you pick up the phone will save you money, frustration and help you meet or come close to meeting your dream site goals and not settling for a Stepford site. You’re having someone else build your site because you don’t know how. If you end up with a site builder grade site, partially because you aren’t up with web design and build to what everyone else is, how does that help you? If you don’t know how the search engines work, how will doing it yourself work for you?
Dreams vs Realities vs Investment… with the right web designer you aren’t all that far off from achieving your goals. Just do the homework BEFORE you make a call to a web designer!
Beyond Web Design has been building websites for 22 years. You can call BWD for your next project at 617-328-6844.