Website builders – the Pros, the Cons and when to engage an agency
Website builders often provide a quick fix to generating a website speedily but are rarely the permanent solution
We are often asked ‘why should I choose an agency to build a bespoke website overusing a website builder?’. With this question in mind, we have taken a look at the pro’s and con’s of website builders and why you might need to engage with an agency.
It’s true that a website builder can give you a site almost instantly on sign-up, which is a huge pro if you need a site within hours. However, once you have got the website you may need to change its look and feel or the content to reflect your business. This side of proceedings may not be so quick, as you will need to learn how to use the CMS (content management system) of the software to edit the site. If you are time poor this may not work for you and it may, in the long run, be quicker to pass the project to an agency to get exactly what you need in a timely fashion.
One of the main inclinations to use a website builder is due to the reasonable monthly or annual cost. This again is a huge pro to any business start-up, as website builders often include the hosting and domain cost, but you can forgo the build cost as you can do this yourself. Whilst you may have to pay for a specific design template but generally, this is cheaper initially than a bespoke website build.
However, if the site cannot grow/change as your business develops or you are too time poor to create the site it can grow costly and often end up taking more money to amend.
It depends on what level of quality and functionality you require as to if a website builder is going to work for your business. If you are looking for a simple brochure or eCommerce site with basic features and an out of the box design then a template site could work brilliantly for you. However, if you require a unique website design with bespoke integrations to existing software or internal systems, a website builder is less likely to have the capabilities you need.
In terms of quality of code, an agency can build a solution to a customers’ specific requirements. Meaning they can avoid unnecessary code i.e. ‘code bloat’ that often website builders have. Code bloat can slow down sites and make them much larger in size than they need to be making them wasteful of resources.
As we have discovered, website builders are great if you want to get on with the task in hand and receive a website almost instantly. However, what if you have a question or need advice on the best way to do something? Some website builders have great support forums and support services (sometimes charged) but these are generally for queries on how to use the product and its specific features, not necessarily on the best way to achieve a goal, i.e. increase website conversions, click-through, subscribers etc.
When an agency takes on a project they not only look to create what you have asked for but they also ask why you want to create this, what your end goal is and then they will offer a web solution to achieve this.
Creating a website is rarely as simple as just building the structure of a digital platform. During the creation of a new site, there will be tasks that may not have been factored in. Skills or elements that you need to elevate your site once the structure is in place.
So now your site structure is built but you are missing…
Branding – a well-designed logo, consistent colour palette and tone of voice across the site. Photography – visual content and photos of your business for the website. Videography – industry or business-specific videos on the site. Copy Writing – written content for your website and social platforms. Content upload – you may not know how to use the CMS to upload content or edit the site. SEO – the website cannot be found easily by users as you have not built an SEO optimised site.
Many website builders offer the ability to add the above elements into a site structure but they cannot guide or help you to create them. These tasks and skills can be costly when required individually but often agencies will include some of these in their offering. Making the project not only more time-efficient but economical.
Website builders often provide a quick fix to generating a website speedily but are rarely the permanent solution when it comes to growing a site as you grow your business.
They do offer an economical solution to creating a website but often don’t come with a greater level of creative freedom and flexibility of functionality.
We are passionate about Kent businesses and offer complimentary website advice service. So if you would like to discuss any of the information in this article on creating your business website please get in touch.
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