Your website is the “shop front” of your business. It is usually the first impression of your brand that a customer gets. Therefore, it’s vital that your site looks great, shows up in search engines and is easy to navigate.
This sounds simple enough, but creating a website from scratch can be pretty costly. So what should you do if you have a small web design budget – create it yourself? Hire a web designer? Forget the idea and just use social media?
There are many options to choose from when it comes to web design, and costs vary considerably. Let’s weigh up the pros and cons of each method to help you make a more informed decision.
Option 1: DIY website builders
Website builders are tools that you can use to help you design and create a website in a matter of minutes. There are many cheap website builders out there. One of the most common tools you can use is the Wix Website Builder.
If you were to use Wix to create a ‘Business & eCommerce’ website, the minimum you wil be looking to pay is £13 per month with the potential to rise up to £22 per month depending on your needs. This is highly affordable for most small businesses, so what’s the catch?
Pros of using website builders
There are many benefits to using a website builder to design your own site. Here are some reasons why DIY solutions might work for you:
1) You can create your website how you want it
Most builders have pre-made templates that you can use to design your responsive site quickly. They also have easy-to-use “drag and drop” systems that give you the option of altering and customising minor elements, such as colours or fonts.
2) Save money by doing it yourself
Website builders are the cheapest option. You don’t have to pay anyone to create a website for you, so you save money that can be used elsewhere in your business.
Some builders are entirely free to use, such as Weebly, but these come with a more limited set of features. Many come with themed ads which you need to pay to remove.
Cons of using website builders
Although website builders give you the freedom to design your own websites, they come with inevitable trade-offs. Here are some major reasons why DIY solutions may not be right for you:
1) Limited features
The biggest downside to using a website builder is that there are limited customisation options. This is usually to compensate for the lower price and the ease of use, and may result in your site looking less professional.
Restrictions include the number of pages on your site, as well as limited cloud storage space.
2) Agencies could create a better website
A professional agency has a team of experts that have years of experience creating stunning websites. They will be able to create a website at a much higher quality than a website builder.
If you have the money to hire someone else to do it for you, you will not only save time, but you’ll also receive a much better final result.
Who is this option great for?
This option is perfect for those that are just starting out and have less capital to spend. If you have the time to create a website yourself and need something to show your prospective customers, then website builders could work for you.
They are also great for people that do not have any background with coding or web design, as well as those who aren’t able to pay a professional web developer. With this option, you can build a simple website quickly without any added stress.
Option 2: freelance developers
This is where you pay a freelance developer directly so that they can build a website for you the way that you want it.
You will give them as much information as they require to build you a website, and you will work with them to iron out any changes until you are happy with the result.
The website design cost here will usually be less than £1000.
Pros of using freelance developers
There are many benefits to outsourcing your website design to a freelance developer. Here are some of the reasons why this might be a good option for you:
1) Professional knowledge and experience
With this option, you can have your website developed by a professional that understands how to create a website for businesses. Depending on who you hire, you might even be working with someone that has designed well-known websites.
2) More customisation options
Freelance web developers can create elements on a website using raw code. The benefit of this is that it allows for greater options for customisation.
Websites done this way can be created to the specifications that you need, meaning that you can have a website built exactly the way you want it to be done.
Cons of using freelance developers
Although freelance developers bring a lot of experience to the table, there will inevitably be some negatives to hiring one.
1) Specialised skillset
Knowledge and experience can be a double-edged sword in this instance. A web developer is likely to be very good at developing websites, but they may not have the other skills you need –such as SEO knowledge.
In most cases, this means that you would be required to provide the web copy yourself, which is arguably the most important element of any website. You could hire a copywriter for this task, but good copywriters are not cheap.
2) Issues with reliability
Hiring a freelancer whom you have never worked with before is always a gamble, especially if they’re relatively new to the industry.
There is always going to be the potential of hiring a bad freelancer that could take your money without delivering a good result. You will need to do your due diligence to make sure that you will be getting what you are paying for.
Who is this option great for?
This option is perfect for those that have the money to pay for a more professional website and do not have the time to create a website themselves. It is also a good option for those that have a specific idea in mind that could be too complex to create without specialist skills.
Option 3: affordable web design agencies
Agencies are companies that can typically create high-quality websites at a lower website design cost. Usually, these companies have a team of experts from varying backgrounds, all of whom will work on your website.
Pros of using affordable agencies
There are many benefits to hiring an affordable agency. Here are some of the few major reasons why this might be a good option for you:
1) Varied skillset
An agency is a smart option because you get the benefits of a whole team with a full set of skills. Agencies usually consist of experienced coders, writers, graphic designers, project managers, social media managers and SEO experts.
It also means that they have a good working relationship and have already developed a workflow that makes them highly efficient.
2) High-quality websites
Even though the website design cost will be between £1000-£3000, you will be receiving an excellent site that will be likely to generate new business for years to come. It will also give you a much more positive return-on-investment than the previous options.
Cons of using affordable agencies
Although affordable agencies can create great websites, they’re not right for everyone. Here are some of the few major reasons this may not be a good option for you:
1) Higher website design cost than website builders and freelancers
Some new businesses may not have the money to be able to pay for affordable agencies and may be looking for a more cheaper option.
You are not just paying for one person and the work that they do – you are paying for a team of people, the cost of the office space, and all the other variables that need to be factored into the asking price.
2) Multiple points of contact
Agencies have more processes and this may mean you will be in contact with more than one person during the project. This could be a problem for you if you are only looking to deal with one person. Sometimes, these types of agencies mitigate this issue through the use of a project manager.
Who is this option great for?
This option is perfect for those that are looking for a website to be created by an expert team. It is also great for those that prefer to work with a credible company over an unknown freelancer.
Option 4: top-end agencies.
This is where you hire a top professional agency to create your website for you. These companies will typically create work for large-name clients, and you will be paying for years’ worth of experience.
Pros of using top-end agencies
There are many benefits to hiring a top-end agency to develop a website for you. Here are some of the reasons why this might be a good option for you:
1) Highly credible
These companies typically work with large scale companies and household names. You can be sure that you will be receiving only the highest standard of work from them.
2) More resources
Due to the size of these agencies, they usually have large budgets, meaning that they will have access to more technology and software that will help them get the job done more efficiently.
Cons of using top-end agencies
Although top-end agencies can create websites to a high standard, there are some downfalls.
1) Steep cost
The main downside to this option is the cost. You will likely be looking at a website design cost of around £5,000+, which makes it much harder for you to get a positive ROI.
2) You will be low priority
Agencies will be working with a large number of clients at any given time, so you may not get the one-to-one human experience of working with a freelancer or a smaller agency.
Who is this option great for?
This option is perfect for those that are only looking for the best quality website that they can find and are willing to pay a high price.
How much does affordable website design cost?
We offer web design services that are designed to be affordable, functional and highly engaging.
Our offering includes a creative website optimised for search engines and website-copy that can help bring business to your doorstep –all for a fixed and affordable price with no hidden costs.
Use our quote builder to get a tailored, on-screen price and let us build the perfect website for you.