Do you think there’s no need to hire a web design company to create a new
website because you can build one on your own easily and without spending much money? After all, is it not just about downloading some software and using a web hosting company to launch a new website? Well, web design has come a long way, and we live in an age where cookie-cutter websites made using online templates and themes no longer make the cut. Now, successful website design for small businesses is all about customized solutions.
One of the biggest mistakes that small business owners make in the digital world is underestimating the importance of a website in the overall scheme of things. You need to bear in mind that your website can make or break your business in this era. This is because it is better to not have a website at all than to have one that does not work properly. After all, the websites we have today are far superior to the ones we used a decade ago. Now, a website is an important marketing vehicle as well as a tool that makes life easy for consumers.
Here are some of the top reasons why you should consider hiring a professional website designer for small businesses to work on your new website.
Table of Contents
First Impression Matters
What your visitors see when they visit your website for the first time determines how they perceive your brand. Therefore, it is important to make sure what they see first is the best representation of your business. The ideal way to do this is by using the services of a small business website designer or web design agency. Even if your business sells the best products in its segment, your website will play an important role in marketing them. This is the main reason you need a website – it can speak to consumers and convince them to buy from you instead of your competitors.
Mobile Technology Compatibility
If you’re not an expert web designer or web developer, you probably have limited knowledge of the latest mobile technology in relation to websites. If you decide to go the DIY way, you might miss out on very important elements that can help your business flourish.
A professional in web design, on the other hand, will show you the importance of a responsive website as opposed to a mobile website. This, in turn, has the potential to save you hundreds of dollars in the maintenance of two versions of the same website. It also saves you a great deal of time that goes into maintaining separate desktop and mobile versions.
You may get an error message after your website has been live for a day, week, month, year, or practically any time. This is a common problem with websites even when you use reliable systems like WordPress. In most cases, website owners go through multiple Google searches to find easy solutions. Eventually, they tend to give up and call a professional, something they should have done a long time ago.
Sure, a professional will fix the problem, but this does not eliminate the risk of your website going down again. To be on the safe side, it is a good idea to work with a professional right from the beginning. This ensures that when your website goes down or faces any other type of problem, there is an expert on standby to resolve the issue as quickly as possible.
Great Web Design
If you turn to any popular online website builder, you will probably use a template that people have already used, and will use again. This is why you find that many small business websites look very similar even if they deal with different products and services. However, when the playing field gets competitive, uniqueness pays.
Given the competition you face in the online marketplace, you need to stand out to attract attention, which is not going to happen if you use a template. A professional website designer for small businesses will ensure building your website from scratch, and customize it to meet your specific requirements and goals. If you choose to partner with a web design company, it can even recommend an ideal hosting company, since that’s an important factor as well.
Ranking Well on Google
When designing your own website, you probably won’t give much thought to search engine optimization (SEO). Even if you do, chances are you don’t have the required know-how to excel in this area. When a web design company is responsible for creating your website, it will incorporate SEO in every possible way.
If you optimize your website for search engines, it has a higher chance of appearing at the top spots on search engine result pages (SERPs). This means it stands to enjoy more visibility. With scores of people using Google to search for businesses and different types of information, it makes sense that your website appears where they are looking. This will only happen if you let an expert weave in all the necessary SEO strategies that can get your website to appear at the top of SERPs for the keywords you target.
Increase in Revenue
Great web design will not only attract potential consumers, it will also make sure that they stick around long enough to perform desired actions, whether purchasing a product or signing up for a service. Backed by good web design, you have endless possibilities for making money, which ensures that your business keeps growing. This is in addition to attracting more traffic, which means an increase in sales and profits.
Speed is an important element when it comes to user experience, and this is one of the thin lines between a visitor staying on and leaving your site. Small business website design companies pay due attention to page loading speed and optimize different elements to ensure that your website loads quickly. Remember that the longer it takes for a web page to load, the more the possibility that a visitor might head to another website. This other website will probably belong to your competitor.
A Worthy Investment
A number of small business owners think that using the services of a professional web design company will burn a deep hole in their pockets. This is mainly because of the initial cost. However, when you look at the bigger picture, you realize that designing a website on your own will actually cost more money and time than just hiring a professional. This is because a professional website is bound to generate much better results than a DIY one, and the money you spend comes with a good long-term return on investment (ROI).
How Do I Create a Small Business Website?
If you have financial constraints and don’t have the required funds to hire a professional small business website designer, you may consider creating one on your own. Bear in mind, though, that the results will not be the same when compared to using the services of a pro, and you’ll still need to spend some money.
- Select an online website builder like Wix, WordPress, or Squarespace
- Choose a domain name
- Select a web hosting company like Hostinger, Bluehost, or GoDaddy
- Choose a theme or template
- Determine which extensions and plugins you wish to install
- Upload your content
- Implement suitable SEO measures
- Click on the Publish button
How Much Does It Cost to Create a Website for a Small Business?
Just how much a custom website costs depends on various factors and can vary considerably. For example, based on the skills of a web designer or a web design company, you could pay as little as $1,000 or upward of $10,000. Besides, the more complex your requirements, the more you may expect to pay. For example, if you wish to add eCommerce capabilities to your website, you’re looking at an added cost.
Data collated by FreshBooks indicates that freelance web designers who are good at what they do make around $75 per hour. While designing a website may cost between $30 and $80 per hour, the development process costs more, ranging from $100 to $180 per hour. Bear in mind that the web design and development world is no different than other industries, where you typically get what you pay for, but spending a fortune is not necessary,
What is the Best Website for a Small Business?
If you wish to build a new website for a small business, you get two basic options from which to choose. One is to go the template way and the other is to opt for custom web design. While both come with their pros and cons, when it comes to performance and results, custom web design is the way to go.
Pros of Using Templates
- Easy to build and launch a new website
- Requires a smaller budget
- Possible to integrate with third-party apps
- Get to choose from different themes
Cons of Using Templates
- Lacks a professional touch
- Very little scope for customization
- Not all templates and themes are responsive
- Ongoing updates and maintenance can be challenging
- Page loading speed might suffer because of add-ons and integrations
- Can be vulnerable to cyber attacks
Pros of Custom Web Design
- A professional builds your website from scratch according to your requirements and goals
- Your website looks unique and stands out from the competition
- You can incorporate all elements of your branding into the design
- You get to customize every aspect of your website
- Works better from the SEO perspective
- Provides scalability
- Easy to find support
- Possible to incorporate different security features
Cons of Custom Web Design
- Takes more time than using a template
- The initial cost is higher
- Requires a collaborative effort between web designers, web developers, content creators, and digital marketers
How Do I Hire a Small Business Website Design Company?
Since there is no dearth of small business website design companies, selecting one might seem challenging, all the more so because their specialization can be rather broad. Paying attention to these factors can help simplify the decision-making process.
- Understand your requirements. Start by determining the type of website you need, the content management system (CMS) you want to use, your timeframe for the project, your budget, and your preferred payment structure.
- Conduct research. This step involves exploring prospects and asking for portfolios. Then, you may create a shortlist.
- Check reviews. Going through online reviews of previous clients can give you insight into the level of professionalism, experience, and customer service a web design company brings to the table.
- Conduct interviews. While going through portfolios and checking reviews can help you come up with a shortlist, speaking with a designer or a design agency’s representative in person gives you a better indication of what you might expect going forward. During the interview, ensure touching upon aspects like technical skills, expertise, and industry-specific experience.
- Discuss the scope of the project. Give the companies you shortlist a clear indication of the scope of your project, while discussing your business objectives and your specific requirements from the new website. Then, ask them how they intend to accomplish your goals.
- Evaluate your options. When the time comes to make a decision, evaluate the companies you shortlist based on the parameters mentioned above as well as their level of collaboration and communication. Make sure you select a company that is open to collaboration and communication because your say is important during different stages of the web design process.
Now that you know what a professional small business website design company can do for you, think hard before deciding to create one on your own. This will, after all, play a significant role in taking your business to the next level. All said and done, it is crucial that you work with a professional to bring out the best in a website that can help your business grow. In addition, it’s also important to partner with someone who provides customized solutions because you then get all the freedom you need to build an eye-catching and highly functional website.