Published: 08/12/2016 by Rich Visokey
Most small business owners know that a website is important to their business. That fact can’t be stressed enough. Small business and startups normally have a tight budget. When you don’t have a lot of money to spend the website budget is typically the first to suffer. Why? Because most believe that when it comes to a website they can easily do it themselves using an online website building service.
Don’t get me wrong. Many successful, small businesses have been built by utilizing a strong DIY strategy. In many cases DIY is really the only option. However, when it comes to your business website it’s almost always the wrong option. Website builders like Wix, Web.com, Squarespace, and others offer what seems to be a great solution but they have a lot of negatives and may do more harm than good in the long run. Here are three quick reasons why DIY site builders should be avoided for website development.
You Don’t Own Your Website
When you use a website building service you are instantly limited in the control of your own website. The site you build is never owned by you but merely rented. Those services rely on you providing them with a monthly income to keep functioning. If you suddenly decide you want to move to another provider or don’t like the service they provide you can’t leave and take your site with you. They own it. To move you have to start over again, which brings you back to the same issue you had before. Yet again, you need a website. Wix, Squarespace, and others have their place and are useful services but just not for your business.
DIY Does Not Equal Easy.
The promise of a few clicks and an instant, professional website is not exactly true. With most website builder services you still have to work to assemble your website. Images and content still need to be collected and decided upon by you. You’ll have to learn their software, their process, and match their requirements which can take you a lot of time. Precious time you could be spending elsewhere. Yes, they do make it ‘easier’ than if you went and bought design software yourself but don’t let them fool you. It still is work.
Your Website Will Look Like Everyone Else’s
After you build your website you may start to notice something. Your website looks like all the other websites created by the same company. You want your business to stand out. You spend a lot of time distinguishing yourself as a leader in your field or service but, unfortunately, your website won’t do that. In order to facility the DIY structure there are a limited amount of design templates and graphics that they can offer. They don’t have your goals in mind but must be able to serve a wide audience. So rather than a unique experience for your website visitors they get a familiar ‘cookie-cutter’ website that doesn’t really do your company any justice. Some website visitors may even think since you put so little effort into your website, you’ll put little effort into helping them as customers. You can’t grow your business if customers don’t get a great first impression. And first impressions are everything!
What You Don’t See Can Really Hurt You
There is a lot of technology behind a website. Besides what you see on a website there is also a lot of code and information you don’t see. Website crawlers or BOT’s are programs created by companies like Google, Yahoo, and Bing that ‘read’ your website and organize the information into the search engines. This is how your website gets included in search engine results. A lot of the code you don’t see is what is most important to these BOTs. Producing this code takes work, it continually needs to be adjusted, and can make or break your website visibility. Because it’s not easy, website builders often skip or skimp on the code you don’t see and that is extremely harmful to you. Because customers find you through search engines, if you don’t get listed correctly, or at all, it can be devastating.
Think Investment, Not Expense
You have to stop thinking about your website as an expense but as an investment. The old adage of ‘You get what you pay for’ very much applies to websites. Every week Flusion is contacted by business owners who went down the DIY path only to realize that after spending $20 or $40 a month for over a year, they ended up with little more than a few basic, simple pages that produced zero business. So rather than just pay for a good website developer upfront they are now paying for a good developer plus the $40 a month they wasted for over a year.
Good, professional website development takes more than a template and a few minutes. It also takes a few dollars.
For more information about how you can get a professionally produced website feel free to contact Flusion. We've been producing top-rated websites for businesses for years.