Using a DIY website builder is a great idea, isn’t it?
While in principle this seems like a great way to save money, and it might appear to save on some upfront costs – it’s obviously not that simple. Most of us send our car to a garage / qualified mechanic for a basic service; even though with some detailed instructions, the right parts, patience, some swearing, a big mess on the driveway, some more swearing, and perhaps quite a few days – we would probably get there… but once you’ve spent those several days saving a couple of hundred pounds, there is a lot to clean up, there are 200 emails and messages to get back to, and you’ve barely seen your family…. and do you really want to drive the car??
What business could you have generated in that few days while someone else did the service for you?
OK so I’m being a bit silly, but you get the principle – your time is more valuable in YOUR business doing what you are good at, and making your business successful.
You know when you see those photo’s in McDonalds of the succulent, perfect burger – that photo – you know the one…. you also know the burger you get. Yes, it will still taste amazing (if you like that sort of thing) but visually, not even close…
That’s what I think when I stumble across adverts for website builders – the end result may not quite look as advertised!
There must be some benefits of a DIY Website builder?
Yes, of course – there is a huge market for them. You have a choice of ready made templates, cheap starting packages, you’ll probably get some limited online support (but be unable to talk to a person if you get stuck and need something quick), you may get access to library of images, and some decent features you can usually drag and drop using common sense. By the end of it you may well end up with something that looks half decent too if you’ve got a design eye… however, there is a lot more to a successful and professional business website than that!
So why is a DIY Website a bad idea?
Some of these ‘convenient’ aspects are also a downfall from a technical standpoint. Templates = not unique. Chances are another person or small business has used the same template as a preferred one for the industry, and probably even chose similar stock images from the library (as no one browses too far down the options!) – so yes it was quick, but visually it hardly set’s you apart from the competition. Search Engine Optimisation could be an issue, it will inevitably take a lot longer than you think to finish – and the end result, well… it may not end up being exactly what you had in mind in the first place! Ownership issues on content, migration problems if you ever want to move away – or hidden costs to transfer things like a domain (even if the option is there, at times it’s not!).
Assuming you have a flair for great design, a plan for the user journey, then you can handle making it look great on all responsive screen sizes and devices, you have the right software to minimise image sizes and optimise the site speed, and take care of all of the technical aspects the Google and other search engines want to see, you’ve planned the search engine friendly page structure and keywords… that’s still only part of the way there!
Ownership – you may never fully own the site, content, or be able to move it. It may be plagued with adverts you can’t control – in return for it being ‘cheap’ the company usually plasters their name, logo and links across it – not particularly professional for someone reading about you.
Now, suitability of something DIY will depend on what service you provide / who your clients are, but if you are a professional business, an SME / B2B business, you will want something unique, technically sound, search engine friendly, and professional. You want a skilled team of experts, with years’ of experience to help you decide what might work – give you fresh ideas and options you have never heard before (so wouldn’t even have thought to have!).
You want your online presence to reflect on you in the right way, and work alongside your business success – why would you rush it, or want anything less than that?
The Website is often your business’ first impression
Clichés exist for a reason, they happened enough!
As cheesy as ‘you don’t get a second chance to make a first impression…’ sounds, it’s far worse in a virtual and digital context. You are not there to say ‘yes but….’ or see someone get the wrong impression and have an opportunity to correct it / apologise / beg….. they will quickly move on and you’ll never know that you lost a potential customer!
In our years of experience, we have also spoken to many small businesses and people that start these journeys with the best will in the world, and a lot of enthusiasm, but get many days and hours in only to be disheartened, confused and behind schedule!! We much prefer to speak to people before this happens!
Anyway – in reality… yes, these things have their place, but if you want that service done professionally – you go to that garage and pay someone. The same applies here!
Speak to our team today about a better website, an e-commerce store, or some search engine optimisation / ranking review on something you already have! We will be glad to help (and we’ll build it all for you!).