(*And how to keep costs down)
Recent technology improvements have made affordable web design easier than ever but some businesses mistakenly cut costs on their website development which leaves their sites neglected and ailing. Though an attractive and updated website is a requirement in today’s marketplace, many business owners wonder (but are too afraid to ask): Why is web design so expensive?
Here are the inside reasons web design is not cheap— and some helpful suggestions to keep costs down.
Reason #1: Professional web designers design professional-looking websites.
Your website should be easy to use and look contemporary for at least three years. While the tools themselves are getting cheaper (WordPress themes, web hosting etc.), quality website development will always be at a premium. Professional web developers are trained to create effective websites that are in keeping with today’s web standards. Though you might be seeking affordable web design solutions, don’t try to set up a business website yourself. (You wouldn’t try to fix your car yourself, so don’t risk something as important as your business’s online presence.)
Keep costs down by: doing your research. Pick a web design company that has experience in your industry and boasts positive client reviews. Use highly-customizable themes from WordPress instead of coding your website from the ground up. Complicated websites with labor-intensive programming can create schedule stalls while functionality and technical bugs are ironed out.
Reason #2: Planning is worth the investment.
Pre-planning the user experience and carefully considering your website’s structure is the most important step in web development. You wouldn’t build a house without a blueprint; the same idea applies to your website. Websites are like mazes and they should all support lead generation and client retention for your business. The planning phase takes time and resources but it’s worth it to create a solid foundation for your online presence.
Keep costs down by: creating a list of your business objectives and honing in on what you want your website to accomplish before meeting with your web development partner.
Reason #3: Effective copywriting and search engine optimization.
Quality professional writers will work with you to ensure that your website copy is compelling, aligned with your brand’s tone, optimized for the web, and contains clear calls to action. Since space and attention on a website are at a premium, every word on your site must count. Additionally, it is critical to ensure that your website is optimized for search engines. If your business isn’t ranking for related search terms on the major search engines, you are losing leads. Unless you have a degree in marketing, don’t try to create the web copy for your site yourself.
Keep costs down by: reviewing copy in a timely manner and not changing content ideas after a predetermined deadline.
Reason #4: Time is money.
Even with a team of professionals working on your website, the process will take time. The average timespan it takes to develop and implement a website is in the twelve- to sixteen-week range, depending on the complexity of your site. Planning, content generation, minor formatting tweaks, proofreading and testing must all be approved internally by your web design partner before even reaching your desk. Set a series of benchmarks for the schedule that your company and your web developer both agree on to make sure that progress is being reached in a timely manner and to reveal any hiccups that might arise before launch.
Keep costs down by: adhering to all agreed-upon deadlines. Don’t change the look or layout of your website once you have committed to a certain style.
Cheap websites can lose prospects for your business, but the many professionals who are dedicated to affordable web design will work with you to craft an impactful website for your budget. Though a quality website is an investment today, a well-constructed site will support your business for the foreseeable future.