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A Web Designer’s Take on Cheap Websites

Cheap Websites: A Web Designer’s View

Cheap websites, they can be a total nightmare to work with. There are many things that can go potentially wrong with your web project, so as a professional web designer, I’m going to help steer you in the right direction. This way you you’ll be equipped towards making a much better choice.

First, please don’t mistaken cheap for good value. Second, try to avoid any one of the following scenarios:

Are you looking at getting a cheap website for your business?
 “Yes. I’m a small fish. I’m just starting out.”

We have cheap website templates for everything. Want us to work with one for you?
I really don’t need anything fancy, so just a basic website would work!”

Thinking about going the DIY route?
 “Yes, I don’t need a web designer.  I’ll just buy a template and rock it myself! I’ve got mad skills.”

Ok…now enough of this nonsense…you must listen to me.

Unless you have the time to commit to becoming a self-taught, top notched website designer, please don’t waste your time.

Focus your energies on your business and leave web design to the pros.

Above all, make it a priority for your business and set a budget towards a high quality website. Hire an expert. A full time web designer should do all the work for you.

Take note of this. Don’t cheapen out. But I’m not saying blow a fortune on your website.

On the contrary, I’m asking you to make a smart choice.

Sure, buying a website online for $100 bucks or allowing your girlfriend’s brother to set one up for you may seem like great options. However, in all honesty these just won’t do.

Cheap solutions are just that, cheap.

They rarely deliver any real value, let alone serve as a good solution.

A well designed, properly functioning website showcases your brand identity. Your site is the face of your company and deserves everything beyond what you’ll get from any “bargain” out-of-the-box website package.

That’s why you should be looking for high-value, not cheapness.

A good representation of your business is defined by a well designed and functional website. How it looks and works is everything to an online visitor. If a person lands onto your website and sees a cheap looking webpage, what’s to stop them from thinking you’ve cheapen out on your own products too?

Think about it. If potential customers are using the internet to find goods or services just like yours, you run the risk of losing business to a competitor with a better website…and that would suck.

So, why hire a professional web designer? Easy! Hiring a pro comes with many benefits that a templated website robs you of.

Here’s more on cheap websites:

Going Cheap Makes You Look Plain

First impressions are everything, am I right?

Cheap websites can look boring or out of date. Lots of templates out there are designed poorly, demonstrating how to look plain and without depth. Cookie cutter websites are great at that, either making your company look just as generic, or worse, creating the illusion that your business is a weak presence within your industry.

Think of your website as a window to your digital storefront.  When done right, web pages should be filled with high quality, innovative and reliable content, bringing in more visitors each day to engage with your website.

Over time, your rankings eventually improve and this establishes you as an authority in your field. Customers will look to you for information, expecting your website to have the latest info on your products, services and company.  Look to your web designer to update your website as things change.

As for a website done on the cheap? Chances are your web project won’t be designed by anyone who cares about the quality of your content.

Quality websites are designed to be unique and memorable in order to give you a good return on your investment.

When designed to function in line with your business goals, your website will generate good leads. Whether its buying your product, contacting you, or subscribing to your email list, a good web designer uses his resources to set you up with great web content, ultimately helping your business grow.

And don’t forget about your content. Continually providing fresh layers of content provides your business with three of the following benefits:

  • helps drive regular visitors to your website
  • attracts customers to your brand
  • establishes you as a leader in your industry

Professional Designers vs. Inexperienced Designers

Web Development CodingIt may appear on the outside that professional web designers merely design, but there is undoubtedly much more to what we do.  In fact, producing a quality branded website is our main focus, because it serves as a vital piece of your marketing and branding efforts.

That’s why the initial phase involves researching your target market. As I research your company, I find out who your customers are, what makes your service unique and what sets your business apart from your competitors.  I know how important it is in asking you questions about your company and product.

As a result, your website is designed to be an effective marketing tool for you to use.

Inexperienced designers on the other hand, won’t make the time to ask these questions.

This is what separates professional designers like myself, from the inexperienced.

I don’t just rely on flashy elements to bring users to your site. I research the needs of your customer to understand your target market and then design your website around your business goals. This gives you a nice return on your investment.

Far outside the realm of just website design, there’s so much more to what professional web designers do. There are specialty services to monitor, overheads associated with building your website such as research, project management, copywriting, SEO optimization, online security and so on.

In contrast, inexperienced designers create cheap websites with little guidance and barely any attention to your business goals.

Where is it? Low Rankings and no SEO

What good is having a website when it’s not ranking high?

Cheap websites are not built to follow the many fundamentals of SEO.  An inexperienced designer will have very little focus on building a search engine friendly website. Templates won’t cut it either. I’m not a fan of cookie cutter websites for they aren’t unique to your company, nor are they ever tailored to your business objectives.

If new customers searching for your products cannot find you, it is most likely due to your website’s inability to rank high on search engines.

As a result, Cheap websites can cause your online business to be virtually invisible. You will rank well below your competitors and as a result, hand over all your potential customers accordingly.  There’s no point paying for something cheap for their services if your website’s layout is not built on SEO.

Security, Who Will Help?

Let’s say you went the cheap route anyway and decided on a web designer’s template offer.

If your site becomes hacked, what will happen then?

Hackers prey on templated websites as these can be easy targets. They can tear apart your website with very little effort, study the code and infect all other sites using the same template. Not good at all.

The likelihood for things to head quickly south increases. If your website goes down, what happens then if your designer isn’t available to help?

Even with the best intentions, inexperienced web designers won’t be able to save you from the down time, consequently sending money down the drain.

Stuff happens even to the best websites.  Always rely on a well seasoned web designer to handle all your website security needs.

Maintenance Updates, Will You Do It?

Without constant updates your website becomes vulnerable to low level rankings, thus leaving you nowhere to be found. Save yourself from expensive internet marketing disasters since cheap websites can end up costing your business more money than you expect.

Updating contact information, making content changes, posting fresh material for your blog, or routinely backing up your data, are all part of the maintenance services I offer after your website launches. This is done to ensure your website is regularly optimized, therefore keeping you visible in the search rankings and in line with your business goals.

Invest in a Professional Website

Professional Web Designer
So, still think you can’t afford a professional website?

Your business website is the face of your company that’s constantly working round the clock to make your products or services available to those searching for you. A successful website serves as an invaluable marketing tool that can be used to promote your business to all current and prospective customers.

This is why a quality website is a long term investment in the future.  You won’t want just any designer to work with. You want a loyal partner at your side to help promote your site and company for years.

Your designer needs to be reliable and your website must be fully functional to support your business goals.

In order for your target goals to be met, you want the best possible website for your business.  So let me make it crystal clear – you can’t afford not to have a professional website solution.

Final Thoughts

Of course, I wouldn’t recommend blowing out your budget in order to get the best website.  On the other hand, it certainly wouldn’t be the right move to go with the ‘cheapest option’ either.

Undoubtedly, there are some small business owners that won’t have this kind of budget to work with.  There are options available for $300 or less, so it can be done. But realize you might just get what you pay for.

Great websites don’t come cheap.  Designed with a careful hand in planning, time and resources, it’s precisely why the best website designers will charge more.  They have the expertise that you can rely on and valuable resources you just can’t find at cheap prices.

At Shift Media, we don’t design and build cheap websites. We focus on high quality web solutions and make them affordable by offering smart payment options. Reach out to us and we’ll discuss options that can work for you.

Contact us today for your free mock up.

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