Web designer Cornwall

Do You Need A Web Designer?

Do You Need a Web Designer?

Silly question, of course you do!  Otherwise I may as well pack up my pencil-case and my Golden Syrup pen pot and head home. Is Neighbours still on?

Actually, afternoon TV aside, we do genuinely feel that not everyone needs to hire a web designer. There are oodles of options available to anyone requiring a website: you can rent a site for a monthly fee or create your own website with the help of a template for example. The solution you choose will depend entirely on how you want your website to look and function.  Plus budget of course; the pesky wing-clipping budget!

Browse through the scenarios below to see which option could be best for you:

1. I’m a newly qualified ballet teacher about to open my first ballet school. I’m not selling anything. I haven’t started making any money yet. I’m quite handy on the PC.

A simple, static one page website will probably suit your needs perfectly. For less than £50, why not have a go and design a website yourself. WordPress is a great place to start. Millions of websites are powered by WordPress and it’s reasonably straightforward to create a very basic looking website once you’ve got to grips with the technology.

If you can only afford the basic options, you will be very restricted by what you can/cannot do, but if you just want a bit of ‘about me’ blurb and your class times, it could be ideal.

If you don’t have time/inclination/patience to design your own website, a very simple and professionally designed site can be built for you for approx. £500 – £1000.

2. I’m a busy ballet teacher offering a selection of classes in my county. I sell tutus and tiaras. I’ve been in business for 2 years and I have about £1200 to create a pretty looking website.

You’ll need an e-commerce website, enabling customers to purchase your ballet goodies online. You have the option to rent an e-commerce store for a monthly fee which is ideal if you want an off-the-shelf solution which enables you to spread the cost of your web project. However, the monthly fee will be on-going and you may need technical capability if you want to customise the look and feel of the site, to ensure it’s consistent with your brand.

Furthermore, your website is a valuable business asset which you will not own if you rent it from a pay monthly provider. This may not concern you initially, but consider how valuable your site will be in five years’ time when you have a burgeoning customer database and you’re considering selling the business.  Your website is an essential and worthy element of your business collateral; make sure you own this important asset.

You could also build your own site, but as the technical requirements are more advanced, you will need a sound understanding of computer coding. And patience. Coding a website is time-consuming, especially if you’re unfamiliar with the jargon and language.  Therefore, as you’re super busy, I’d hire someone to create an e-commerce website for you which you can update yourself via a content management system (CMS).

This could be achieved for £1200 but your web designer would probably need to use a template i.e. your site would not be custom-coded; and you will be fairly restricted by the design and configuration options. If you require some customisation to add additional design features, you can expect to pay between £2000-£5000 depending on which features you require and whether the designer is your neighbour’s 12-year old son or a qualified professional.

3. I own the world famous Dancing Daisies Ballet Academy. I’m quite a big deal. I sell hundreds of different products; communicate with customers via email newsletter; share videos of our dance competitions; and encourage students to book classes online.

If you want your website to best reflect your professionalism and expertise, and to include a robust and brand consistent online store and booking facility, you should consider having a website professionally coded and designed. This means your website will be built from scratch and will be tailored to your precise requirements without compromises. As this is technically demanding and time-consuming work, you’ll spend approximately £6,500 – £10,000.

Many factors will need to be taken into account when considering whether to appoint a web designer: How computer literate are you? How much spare time do you have?  Do you have images and do you own the copyright? Will you be writing the content for your website? Have you considered any existing database/software integration? Can you manage updates yourself?

Furthermore, there are additional costs to consider. Primarily, you will almost certainly be charged for web hosting i.e. storing your website on a secure server.  The type of server you choose will affect the speed, space, reliability and security of your website.  There are several options available depending on the technical requirements of your site; some web designers include hosting in their initial price, whereas some charge a marked-up monthly fee. Typically, for a small business with an online shop, and without the same technical demands as Amazon or the Pentagon, you can expect to be charged £20 – 100 per year.

Similarly, maintenance fees are another factor you will need to consider when considering web designers. All those little tweaks you require over your first 12 months in business may/may not be included in your original quotation, so be sure to check beforehand.

The broad ballet dancing scenarios above should have hopefully provided you with an idea of the options and prices available to you when considering having a website designed.

Each option will deliver a website, but comparing one with the other is like comparing a Porsche 911 with a Vauxhall Astra.  They’ll both drive you to shops, but how they look and function will be miles apart.

Web Design Cornwall

To see how Cornish Pixel web design can help your business, visit www.cornishpixel.com or call 01208 812233.

Thanks for reading & have a great day.

Victoria

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