It would be unfair to suggest that the majority of website developers aren’t good at what they do. They’ve invested a lot of time and effort learning the tools of their trade, as web standards continue to evolve, they need to be always on the ball to keep up with new approaches to web design.
Once upon a time, paying for this level of expertise was the only true way to ensure you could get a top quality website. These days however, that’s no longer the case.
With greater accessibility to the kind of new technologies employed by the professionals, and with many top website builders offering low cost solutions to easy DIY website design, we’ve got a lot more options at our disposal.
Which one you choose will be largely down to a number of factors, not all of which are best served by hiring a professional.
It’s hard to begrudge web designers charging the kind of expensive fees they do. When you hire a professional, you’re tapping into a lot of experience, skills and knowledge that should ultimately benefit you and your website as a whole.
But boy, do those fees add up. It’s rare that you’ll work with a first class professional whose final invoice doesn’t run into the hundreds, maybe even thousands for more complicated projects.
You don’t need me to tell you that this can be a serious obstacle to setting up a website if you don’t have that kind of budget available.
With that in mind, doing it yourself may the better alternative.
Control over the finished product
Even when you pay a web developer and tell them exactly what you want, what they ultimately deliver may not quite be what you had in mind. Sometimes, there’s a good reason for this, though more often than not, it’s simply that the person you hired had their own ideas in mind on how to best implement your vision.
When that happens, you’ll probably end up spending more time -and possibly even money- than you bargained for in order to get a finished product that you’re happy with.
Naturally, this isn’t a problem if you build your own website.
Updating your site
More and more websites are making the shift to Content Management Systems (CMS) like WordPress (my preferred CMS which powers most of my own websites), making it fairly simple for anyone with even basic technical skills to manage their own websites and take care of day-to-tasks like adding new material or amending existing content.
Despite this, there still exists a lot of professional site builders who use more complex ways of putting a site together. In this instance, you’ll need a lot more web know-how to make those changes unless you opt to have your web developer do it for you.
Do that, and you’re effectively at their mercy. For one thing, there might be additional costs involved, for another, issues could arise if you needed to make an urgent update at say, 5.30pm on a Friday afternoon when your webmaster has already clocked off and gone home for the weekend.
Take on the work yourself, and you can update your website wherever, and whenever you need to, without being beholden to somebody else’s schedule.
Speaking of working to the schedule of others, when you make your own website, you have the freedom to set your own timescale and deadlines, and get the job done when you need it doing.
Depending on how much other work your designer has on, you may be waiting for longer than you hoped for to get your site live online, hardly ideal if you’ve got a boss breathing down your neck or if launching your site is critical to the success of your business.