Having a professional website that represents your organization and your brand is something that any serious business or organization needs to have to effectively communicate their message. If you still need convincing of this, read our article on why creating a professional website is so important.
There are thousands of ways to create a website but we have boiled it down to 2 approaches to help you decide where to start.
Approach #1: Build it yourself with at DIY Web Builder
Low up-front costs.
You can spend as little as $8/month to get a website with your own domain name with a DIY website builder tool.
It may not produce results you were hoping for.
DIY web builders help you overcome some of the technical aspects of creating a website but you do have to be technically proficient with an appreciation for design to get through the process and end up with a well written and designed website that actually produces results for your organization.
Some things you should know:
- Understanding the difference between writing content for your website and writing content for other promotional materials. People have very short attention spans online so your content needs to communicate your offerings in a succinct way. Here is a great article written by Gather Content on the Subject.
- While there are some great DIY Website builder templates, molding those templates to your branding can be a bit tricky especially if you’re not the artistic type.
- For a 10 page small business website you should expect to invest 40-100 hrs of time get a decent site written, designed, and configured through the DIY process. Depending on how in depth your site will be you will need to define: your target audience, what key words you want to show up for in search results, your page structures, how to write the content, the layout of each page, the pictures to be used, customize the template to compliment your brand, and so on.
DIY Website Builder Recommendation:
Like website designers, there are hundreds of DIY website builders to choose from. After testing some website builders ourselves we would recommend you check out Strikingly.
- Tonnes of templates to choose from to customize to your branding.
- Great for creating a personal website instantly. Just sign in with LinkedIn or Facebook and publish your new site.
- You can set up a website with a custom domain name for as low as $8 per month (billed annually)
Approach #2: Hire a Web Design Company
It lets you focus on your business.
Creating a professional website is a question of branding, design, communication strategy, information architecture, user experience, search engine optimization and technical expertise. If you are not comfortable with managing all these aspects yourself, or could better use your 40-100 hours by spending it with family or focusing more on your business, it would probably be best to hire a professional.
Your website will have a better chance of producing results.
We would say that 90% of the websites out there that were created with the DIY approach definitely stand out, but usually for the wrong reason. A well-crafted website can make that first impression that you need to stand out among your competition and increase engagement and sales.
Up front cost:
Hiring a professional web designer generally takes the most financial investment. However, if you hire the right vendor, you should get a much greater return on that investment when your site is getting found online and wowing potential clients. Expect to pay between $1,500 and $10,000 for a professional website. These prices vary depending on many factors such as:
- whether the site is designed from scratch or using a template
- whether you write the content yourself or have them copy write it
- whether you want your site to show up for specific key words
- how many pages and features your site has
There are a lot of web design companies out there and finding the right vendor is going to be key to your success. You could hire a company from India to save some money, but you will end up with a lot of the same problems that you would face with the DIY approach since you will be acting as the expert and telling them how to build it. Of course we would recommend your friendly Edmonton based web design company called Holds Worth design (us), but we would still encourage you to do your research.
Why not start by viewing our past projects and hearing from some of our satisfied clients, or connect with us and we would be happy to provide you with a quote.
Having a strong online presence is essential to the success of many organizations today. If you have the funds to hire a developer to build your website, focus on what you are good at and leave it to the professionals. In the end they will produce a much more robust and professional looking website that you can then use to impress potential clients and stakeholders and gain traction with your audience. However, if you have a considerable amount of time but not a lot of money, website builders like the one mentioned above may be your best option.