The A-Team on…DIY vs Professional Custom Website Builds

The hidden costs of a DIY or quickie website build

So, you’ve decided to bite the bullet and build a new website for your business. Great idea! Here at Adloyalty we have built hundreds of websites for our customers. We’ve also been called in to fix or redo plenty of DIY or quickie template jobs built by others.

We’ve seen it all – the good… the bad and the downright ugly! What we see most commonly are websites that aren’t performing the core function of driving customers to the business.

The A-Team’s resident web expert, Robyn Priest, says the hidden costs of DIY websites are multilayered.

“Too often I am asked to review or work on a website that a client (or client’s friend) has put together with a DIY builder such as WIX, Weebly, or Squarespace,” Robyn outlined.

“While they think they are saving time and money, often it ends up costing them for me to fix or build a new site from scratch.

“Lately I have seen a few local businesses that have put together sites on these platforms and when attempting to use them they find the problems keep multiplying.

“Some of the issues include that the site is not mobile friendly, content is falling off the page, text is unreadable due to size or colour, navigation links don’t work or are missing, image sizes are incorrect, and Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is more often than not incomplete.

“Remember your website is your shop front. A site that doesn’t look professional or feature the appropriate functions – does not achieve the core purpose and may actually have the potential to lose customers.”

Benefits of custom web design for your business

While many businesses wish to bypass the time and cost of a custom web design, the benefits of doing it right the first time can far outweigh the perceived savings of DIY or quickie cowboy website builds. Key benefits include…

  1. Professional website builds are custom designed for your business and brand.
  2. We consider the future potential/plans for your business and factor in the ability of your website to grow as your business does.
  3. Your site is built on your own hosting account.
  4. A custom build includes an easy to user interface, user manual and ongoing support.
  5. Our custom builds include all SEO and google tools.
  6. We always ensure our sites are mobile responsive.

Checklist for your website build

Attention businesses about to build a website!!! While do it yourself web builders have a lower setup cost and are promoted as a quick solution, you need to consider some key factors before you proceed down the DIY path.

Do yourself a favour and check out our quick checklist below before beginning your website build…

The technicalities…

    Are you going to set up/update – site/hosting/domain name and email yourself? Time is money. Time taken to learn could be better spent on or in your business. If not set up correctly you could potentially lose business through your site not loading correctly, not receiving emails, and links not working.

Look and feel…

    Are you happy to sacrifice a certain level of uniqueness and have the same website template as everyone? Do you want your website to stand out from the crowd or is that not important to you? DIY websites often have limitations on the customisation. You must work with what the chosen template provides.

SEO friendliness…

    Not all templates/builders are SEO friendly. The saying in the Adloyalty office about SEO is…“Having a website without SEO is like building a billboard behind a tree – unless you know it’s there you won’t find it.”

People friendliness…

    Try to think like your audience. Is the DIY website user friendly? If your website is not easy to navigate, people will go elsewhere. With all the competition in the online market these days – consumers expect a good online experience.

Old code…

    Technology moves at such a rapid rate these days it’s not surprising that things become outdated almost before they are completed. It is important to consider that some DIY website templates have old code and therefore may not work on all browsers.

Scalability…

    Will the DIY website be able to grow/modify with your business? Do you know what your future business needs will be?

Capabilities…

    Most builders allow for basic functions, but what if you wish to add on extra features – will it be possible and what will it cost? For example, can you add in a booking capability, a shop, or a staff login area to the site? How far can you customise the site to your business?

SEO expertise…

    Do you understand the ins and outs of SEO, Google Analytics, Google My Business, Google Search Console? These are critical to the function of your website.

Responsiveness expertise…

    Do you understand the importance of mobile responsive and how to make sure your site is mobile friendly? If your site is not mobile responsive you will be penalised by Goggle. Something as simple as text colour can impact on your site causing it to flag with Google as not being mobile friendly.

Content is key…

    Do you have the ability to create quality content that is SEO friendly and keeps your visitors engaged? Photos should look professional not pixelated or grainy and should be resized to reduce load time on your website. Font styles and headings are important. Font’s need to be easy to read and headings have hierarchy structure.

Think of the future…

    What happens if you change your mind now or in the future and want to have the DIY website redone or updated? You need to be aware that some DIY sites cannot be moved to another platform or hosting. Others allow transfer, but some features like shops or blogs aren’t included in the transfer so you may have to start from scratch.

Remember a professional custom-built website is an investment in the future of your business!

At Adloyalty we don’t fit tyres, build heavy machinery, manage a motel, or design landscapes. Our business is to build your website while you get on with what you do best – building your business!

Our first step is always to get to know your business and the unique requirements of your website project. We offer a full range of services which take in all professional aspects of web development including marketing and communications, social media, content development, graphic and web design.

We hope we have given you some food for thought and perhaps saved you from the perils of the DIY website build. Why don’t you give us a call or drop us a line at Adloyalty – we’d love to discuss your next professional website project.