A transparent comparison for small business owners looking to hire a web designing agency
for small If you are low on budget but want to build a website, we have done extensive research for you to find the most affordable web design services. Our guide covers DIY options as well as hiring professional to build it for you. Let’s dive deep and find before you decide which one is for you.
Commencing any business needs an initial investment. You won’t just spontaneously get customers and begin making money as soon as you open a new business. Of all the 100 things you need to do the crucial one is building a website for your business. Most small businesses cannot afford a high-end site and are looking for affordable web design services that are simple yet effective.
For small business owners who are looking for a website only to showcase their information, a portfolio kind of site is excellent. However, you should think through about what you want to achieve. In the year 2019, a website is more pages with random information. It can be your source for getting additional prospects
Most business owners often forget to factor in the cost of not having an online presence. While you may think that the website is just a luxury, but it’s not.
A lot of small companies, including startups, have outgrown their competitors, including the ones with a million dollar revenue. Their secret ingredient has been an investment in its website and outsmarts the competitor through online marketing.
Few of the key benefits of having a website are:
1. Save time: You may spend time explaining to your customers about who you are, the past work, references, etc. It is crucial, but it is time-consuming. Your website can eliminate it and save you time. People interested in the kind of services you offer can visit your website and get the necessary information you need. It can serve multiple customers saving resources and time.
2. Lead generation: Once your website is live, it can be your virtual sales assistant. You can run ad campaigns to bring traffic to your website and generate leads immediately. Or, you can hire SEO companies to rank your site and generate organic leads like we have brought you to our page. SEO takes time but is the most effective digital marketing strategy of all.
3. Build credibility: Your website is your online office address. For most people out there, it is tough to trust a business without a website. A beautiful looking website is a tool to win trust.
Most small businesses are worried about the fact that building a website will cost a fortune. Honestly, the cost can vary from $200-$200,000+. The prices vary depending on your end goal. Based on your requirement, the web development company may have to develop custom features and functions. If so, you can expect the cost to run into 5-6 figures.
If you are low on a budget, you can start with a standard 5-page website, for which you will find lots of affordable web design services. Make sure you do not neglect the power of having a blog.
The three alternatives for you if you are on low budget:
1. DIY (Do It Yourself) Web Design Services
There are a lot of DIY platforms that will charge you a monthly retainer for the site. They have lots of readymade template; you can pick one from them and start modifying the website to your taste. Their monthly fees will include domain name and host, so you are all covered over there.
You should keep in mind that you may need additional tweaking to change the looks of the website to your preference. If you are a person with no knowledge of HTML and CSS, you may need a pro to help you with it.
Let’s cover some of the top players in the DIY industry. We will look at the pros and cons too.
Even though most are very transparent with the pricing, I thought its better for me to explain you the maths again. If you are a business planning to accept payments online, you will see an additional charge every time your clients pays online. I will give you an example of affordable DIY providers, along with their payment model.
Shopify is one of the go-to DIY platforms if you are looking to build a robust e-commerce website. If you cannot afford the upfront fees, a web designing agency will charge Shopify is one of the solutions. You will quickly have a website up and running.
Price: There are three plans.
Basic Shopify is $29/mo
Shopify is $79/mo
Advanced Shopify is $299/mo
If you are using any other payment processor other than theirs, it will charge you (depending on the plan) 2.0%, 1.0% & 0.5%. Let’s say you are a Basic Shopify customer with monthly revenue of $5,000 from your online store. The transaction fee is 2.0%. It means you will pay an additional $100 ($5000*2.0%) over and above the $29 monthly subscription. The overall cost comes to $29.
Unlike Shopify, Weebly is a DIY for business and e-commerce website. The basic plan starts with a low fee of $8. It also has a free option but is not recommended for business owners. The free one will not have your domain, but the subdomain like https://yourbusiness.weebly.com and the website will display their ads.
Price: There are four options
Free (Basic Use): $0.00/mo
Starter (Personal Use): $8.00/mo
Pro (Groups & Organizations): $12.00/mo
Business (Small Businesses & Stores): $25.00/mo
Performance (Power Sellers): $38.00/mo
Their transaction fee for Starter and the Pro plan is 3%. It means if you are a business with $5000, you will end up paying $150 ($5000*3%). So by the end of the month, you will pay $158 a month.
There are lots of options out there with similar pricing models such as Squarespace, Wix, and many more. While they may seem like affordable options on the surface, but it costs way more.
The most significant drawbacks of the DIY website platforms are:
1) Missed conversion opportunities:
Do it yourself which is an advantage is a disadvantage too. Unless you are opening a web design agency, it doesn’t make sense. Unless you are professional with experience in designing the website, you will not know the best practices, design aesthetics, and so much of the knowledge that goes into building a site.
You probably will miss opportunities that could have made your website more conversion optimized. It will cost your business more than it would have for you to build the site.
2) If you quit their subscription you will lose your website:
These DIY websites no doubt sounds cheap alternative; however, if you look at the overall perspective, it is not.
Once you decide to discontinue their services, your website is gone. You may have the ownership of the domain name, but the site you invested your time in creating will vanish. The best part is they are not obligated to give you a copy of the site you built as it is proprietary design.
3) You invest your time. Your time is money.
Either you hire a professional, or you can create your website. The latter may seem like an affordable option for most, but let’s factor in a few things.
If you do not know about website designing, HTML, or CSS developing your site can take much longer than it will be for a trained designer. Your time is better spent on the different aspects required for beginning a company. You need to set a budget, create a business plan, perfect your craft, and maybe get investors. There is no time for learning web design.
Creating the website will take away your time, energy, and focus.
You also need to factor in your charge per hour to know the actual cost. It should include the research you would do for making a website, the best practice, making your website SEO optimized. When combined, it costs more than hiring a professional web designing firm.
2. Hiring an Inhouse Web Designer
Hiring an in-house web designer might sound enticing; however, it can be expensive. Unless you have projects that will take a long time, it won’t be a good idea. Once the project is over, you will need to let them go off, which doesn’t sound right, too.
3. DFY (Dont For You) Web Designing Services
There are lots of excellent web designing company, onshore, and offshore. Onshore companies are expensive compared to offshore. If you are looking for affordable web design services, then you want to stick with the offshore web design and development agencies.
The bill for the same website that you will design from offshore will differ cost about 4x less than that of onshore. You have to be careful about choosing the right web designing company and in your case, you need someone who has experience working with small business owners.
Unlike the DIY options above, web designing will cost higher, but the website will be more tailored to your need.
What should you look for in a web designer?
If you are sure, your time is better invested in other critical matter; hiring a professional design agency to create your site is the best option. Select your web design services carefully.
Some of the questions you should consider asking the designer agency is:
- Will you have enough time to look after and make changes your website?
- What type of system do they build sites?
- Do they incorporate SEO into the build and use responsive web design?
- Is the work done in-house, or is it outsourced?
While there are no wrong or right to most of these issues, it will help you to determine if the agency is something you want to work with. Take a little extra time to examine your options, and it will save you the hassle and the money down the road.
Choosing an affordable web design provider
Freelancer or agency? As a web designing firm, we ought to be more biased towards hiring a web designing company, but there is a solid reason behind it. There is no doubt hiring a freelancer will cost a bit lower than hiring an agency.
A personal web designer will not have as many overheads and can usually charge lower prices; but, contractors may lack proper, valuable, and training experience. You want specialists with experience and not just a college-going kid.
A designing agency has a team with their expertise. In the case of freelancer, it’s one guy, but with an agency, there is a team that works together to create your site. They share their expertise to make sure your website is leak proof when it comes to opportunities.
You will need after sales support. The after sales support is something only an agency can provide because it is their core business. Difference between a freelancer and an agency is the accountability factor. Between web design agency and a freelancer, the former is more accountable.
A freelancer may decide to quit the job and change career path, but with the agency, it’s not the case.
After weighing in the pros-cons of both, freelancers and agencies, an excellent solution for a business looking to start an online presence may be one that combines the best of both worlds.
One of the most notable examples of this is Crazy Media Design Web Design Services. Our goal is to give smaller business entrepreneurs and owners an affordable web design services choice with all the advantages of hiring a qualified and seasoned professional.
With our web design service, you get a group of content, development, and design experts at an affordable rate.
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