Should you hire a web designer or DIY?

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So you’ve started your own business, and now that you’re up and running, you’re looking to take it online. Unless you have a degree in software design, chances are that the idea of creating your own website leaves you at least a little nervous. Do you hire someone to do it for you? Or do you try to do it yourself? Searching online can quickly bring up several do-it-yourself services that claim to offer a variety of custom designs for you to have a site ready to go quickly, easily, and cheaply. While this might seem like the best way to go, you owe it to yourself and your business to look into hiring a professional web designer. Sure, at first it might seem like a needless expense–why pay someone $50 an hour or more when you can set something up on your own for a fraction of the cost? However, there are some good reasons why you should consider forking over that extra dough.

1. Custom Designs that Grow with Your Business

All of those DIY web services claim to offer a custom design experience, and to an extent, they deliver. You can choose from dozens of layouts; you can pick from a serious amount of fonts; you can mix and match color schemes to your heart’s content. However, even with all of these choices, the end product still has an impersonal, industrial look that doesn’t really differ in the slightest from all of those other sites that use those same services.
With a web developer, though, you can truly build your site from the ground up, incorporating any unique designs you wish. And what’s more, as your business grows, your website can easily grow and change with it, so you won’t ever have to worry about outgrowing the limited functionality that those DIY services offer.

2. Personalized Support

As you are building and maintaining your website, chances are that at some point you’re going to encounter an issue. There might be a glitch, a widget that doesn’t work correctly, broken links, or something else that makes your website not work to its full potential. Who are you going to call? If you went with a DIY service, chances are you’re going to call someone halfway around the world who has no idea who you are and what you need. With a designer at your beck and call, however, personalized service also means personalized support, with help that not only knows who you are and what you want, but who also is intimately familiar with the ins and outs of your website. After all, who better to fix your website than the one who built it line by line?

3. Maximized Search Potential

Without a doubt, if you’re business is going to make it online, you have to know how to use search engines like Google to your advantage. Most internet searches aren’t random; Google and other search engines use sophisticated algorithms to help determine which websites show up at the top of their results. And since most consumers never make it to the second page of a search results list before making a decision, it’s imperative you do everything you can to get your website towards the top of that list. That’s where a professional web designer comes in. By using coding techniques and utilizing keywords, Web designers know how to maximize your search engine profile so you’ll always get noticed.
What’s more, those DIY services often are unable to make your website screen-ready for consumers who want to search on their phones or tablets. Designers are up to date on the latest tricks to ensure that your site looks the best it can on any screen that searches for it.

4. Upfront, Predictable Costs

We’re not going to lie: those DIY services really do seem pretty cheap, to begin with. For just a small amount per month, you can set up a basic website, and for a few dollars more you can start to add certain features and functions. But soon, as your business grows, the costs start to add up. What starts as a few dollars a month can quickly balloon into a whole lot more than that as you add feature after feature, and before you know it you’re paying a pretty hefty fee to keep your site up and running. While either way requires money, with a developer working for you the costs are up front and expected, planned for, and worked into your budget, with no worry about surprises or rate hikes later on as your business expands.

If you’re looking for a quick and easy website, one that provides basic functions and an elementary design, then a DIY service might be all you need. However, if you consider your website to be an important and necessary extension of your business, you owe it to yourself to see how a professional web designer can turn your website into more than you ever could on your own.