Need Affordable Small Business Website Design?
Have you ever looked at another website and thought, wouldn't it be great to have something like that yourself? If so, you may be in the market for affordable small business website design.null
Hiring a website designer can get expensive. There's no guarantee that even when you do, your website will turn out that great.
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There's also no guarantee that a great looking website will bring traffic and sales. There are plenty of good looking websites sitting idle or finding their way into blog oblivion.
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What Are Your Options?
Having many options is both good and bad. The good is you get to choose and hopefully save some money in the process. The bad is you may not know how to choose. That's where this guide will help!
Do It Yourself (DIY)
Okay, so you're not a website designer. No Biggie! You can still find a way to have your cake and eat it too. That is, you can develop your website yourself. This was not as easy to do ten or so years ago. Before Content Management Systems (CMS) like WordPress came onto the scene, your best choice was to hire someone to design your website.
CMS gives the average person, without any design skills, the ability to create professional looking websites. They also give you the ability to update your content on a frequent basis. Before, you had to ask your designer to make updates for you.
How It's Done
Going forward, I'll refer to WordPress as that is the most popular CMS. The concepts between each CMS package is similar. If you use another type of CMS, you can still follow along!
WordPress uses a modular concept. It is a framework that allows users to make changes that affect the entire website. For instance, if you don't like the look and feel of your website, you can change it by swapping out a different theme. Themes control the look and feel of your website.
If you need some extra functionality, you can install plugins. These are pieces of code that gets attached to your WordPress installation that performs specific functions. For instance, if you need scheduling functionality, look for plugins that will accomplish this.
WordPress also supports widgets, which are similar in a way, to plugins. These are snippets of code that perform functionality, but are usually tied to the website theme. For instance, you can use widgets to add advertising to your website. Or, if you need to add contact information at the bottom of your website, you would usually do this using a widget.
WordPress Has a Learning Curve
It's unlikely that you'll be able to start developing day one when you install WordPress website. That is, unless you already know how to do it. If you are new to WordPress, you will have to come up to speed.
However, it's not difficult, at all. It would not have come as far as it has if it were. Once you learn the foundation, it is simply a matter of working with the interface to get used to it. Then, it becomes a piece of cake.
Hiring a WordPress Designer
Before, I mentioned that hiring a designer to build your website is expensive. This was back before WordPress (or CMS) existed. Hiring a WordPress designer is much cheaper than having someone design your website from scratch.
In fact, if you find someone who is trying to set your website up for thousands of dollars, move on. They are taking advantage of your lack of knowledge about the process. It should not cost more than $100 or less to get a basic WordPress installation going.
To be fair, that $100 is for a basic set up with a free theme that can be found online. If you need more customization, you should expect to pay depending on what you want created. If there are themes and plugins available for a fee, you should not expect the designer to eat the cost of licensing those on your website. You need to pick up those costs.
Also, if the designer is required to create custom themes and plugins themselves (assuming they have the expertise), it could and should cost several hundreds of dollars (maybe even thousands). It will depend on many factors, including how extensive the customization is going to be.
My suggestion is to get a basic website going and then as it becomes popular and starts making you money, you can use some of the money to add customization.
There are platforms available online, that are a cross between doing it yourself and having the platform do it for you. I call these hybrid approaches. These solutions allow you to drag and drop components onto your base platform which gives you added features and functions.
The following (not exclusive) are some examples:
Another name for these types of websites are website builders. They give you the ability to create full scale websites without knowing any code.
Limitations of Website Builders
Website builders pride themselves on being easy-to-use and creating websites quickly. However, there are some drawbacks to using these types of websites.
- The Functionality is Predefined
- Some include advertising
- Lack of control
You get some features for free in the base version of their packages. But, to do anything worthwhile, you have to upgrade and pay a monthly fee.
As you can see, you have several choices. When you learn to do it yourself, you control every aspect of the website. When you rely on other platforms, you are stuck with whatever they dish out for you. They may even tell you what you can and cannot include on your website.
Learning how to set up a WordPress website is a great way to get an affordable small business website design. Take a look at the following to see just how easy it is:
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