What is the difference between a website designed by a web designer and a website built by online web builder software?
This isn’t a question we get asked very much – as most people who contact us have decided that they need to hire a professional to build their website for them, however if I were looking to start out with a new website for my business or organisation what would I decide to do?
If you wanted to build your own website then there are some good reasons to use online software such as the 123 Reg website builder, as for a relatively small start up cost and / or monthly payments you get access to a variety of tools allowing you to create your own website with commonly required functionality (contact forms, maps, images, shopping functionality and so on), and you usually are able to customise it enough using the templates they provide and a colour scheme to match your company or organisation.
Generally you will have the opportunity to add your own images, which is very important when it comes to your logo, and almost as important when it comes to photographs of your goods and services (the best replacement for actually seeing and picking up real goods when looking at a website is good photography). It really helps if you or the person in charge of your website building project has a keen eye for design – in particular good colour choices for graphics as well as text, and a good understanding of the use of white space, to give the content of your web pages enough space to let them ‘breath’ and therefore create the impact you require. Finally if you feel confident using the internet and importantly have a good feeling for general computer work then there’s no reason not to give it a try.
Hiring a professional web design business like Fibonacci Designs offers an entirely different type of website – most of our clients require a fully polished bespoke custom design with quite advanced functionality, search engine optimisation and often other ‘peripheral services’ such as hosting, html email newsletters, facebook pages, blogs and so on. In addition most of our clients simply don’t have the time to work out how an online website builder works, so often hiring our services save them time they need to otherwise spend looking after their customers – doing what they know while we do what we are good at. Have a look at the Pro-Xcel website in our blog here – this is an example of a website based on a template but with custom design applied to it.
We have experience in building custom websites dating back to the mid 1990’s and so understand the best way to design and build a website taking into account the needs of the user, the needs of the client, and all of the requirements that the different internet browsers and search engines need to have a professional bespoke website working well, reinforcing your brand and making you money.
The amount of time that it takes to design and then build a website, together with the ‘population’ of content is also often under-estimated. Using a template service where most of the design work is already completed (aside from changes to colours, adding logos, choosing fonts, layout options etc) can cut down the time it takes to build a website however if there are a lot of templates to choose from then this alone takes a little while to decide on, and then often the end result isn’t quite the same as the ‘sales pitch’ template looked like in the first place.
At ‘the end of the day’ (or week) the choice is of course yours – and the two options here are very much found at different ends of the same rather long stick. If I were to offer some advice though when choosing an online website builder it would be (a) to make sure you know what pages you want to include in your website and have the content pre-written and photos at the ready; (b) check that you have enough time available to do everything from choosing a template to making the website live; and (c) do some good research checking all the options available to you. If you’d like to read more about this there’s a great article here written by Jen Udan who covers alot of what I have said here but in a little more detail.
Alternatively, for solid, reliable, professional websites that work, please feel free to contact us here at Fibonacci Designs!