Building your own business website is not a good idea. Here are 9 reasons how that can work against you and your business objectives.
Trust Me; You Don’t Want to Do This on Your Own!
If you have a business you need a mobile-first website, that part is clear to almost every small business owner. Building a business website is a different subject. To conserve limited startup funds, many new business owners want to do this on their own. Unfortunately, DIY business website design is a terrible idea in most cases.
To be clear, of course, you can build your business website! With access to website builders like Weebly or Wix and other free website templates, the ability to create your website for your small or new business has never been more effortless. Or so it seems at first glance. Not included in these DIY business website design templates are the actual instructions for creating a successful business website.
Of the DIY’s (Do-It-Yourselfers) that embark on building a site, 98% of them fail in publishing one at all.
By hiring a professional web designer or agency, you ensure that your business website serves the needs of your business. Your website must attract visitors, engage them, and convert them into consumers right from the start. Doing this on your own will take a lot of trial and error, and most likely, you will not succeed on your own.
If you want to build your business website, I can’t stop you. But I recommend that you consider this very carefully! Here are some of the main reasons why we believe that DIY business website design is a big mistake for most businesses.
9 Reasons Why DIY Business Website Design is a Bad Idea
1 – Wrong Priority
Unless you are a professional web designer yourself, designing your business website should not be your priority. You have better things to do than to figure out how to add content to a free template or to understand how to get started with a free website builder.
That includes everything from talking to existing clients, networking to get new ones, stocking your shelves, or cooking in your restaurant. You may even want to consider spending more time with family, loved ones or simply relaxing and recharging yourself.
If you believe that DIY business website design should be your priority, you should reconsider. I am sure that as a new business owner, you have lots of other things to do that are more valuable for your business and more fun for you. Focus on those instead. By doing so, you will have a much more positive impact on your business than failing at DIY business website design.
Trust me with this; I have seen too many DIY website failures to wish this on any business owner.
2 – Bad First Impression
The first reason why DIY business website design is a terrible idea is that you most likely will create a wrong first impression of your business. Your business website is your most important advertising tool. Your website will probably be the first place a potential customer will learn about your business, story, services, and products. And just like in real life, you only get one chance at this.
Your potential customers are going to form an opinion about your brand based on your online presence. And your business website is a big part of that! You must grab your customer’s attention in a few seconds (remember that goldfish have a longer attention span than we do!). If your website has a confusing navigation menu, many typos, or lacks a functional contact form, your customers will move on to your competition.
Only a well-designed business website will attract and convert consumers. Simply put, by having a quality business website design, you are showing your site visitors that you are a quality business. It shows that you care enough to invest in your online brand. For that reason alone, DIY business website design just doesn’t measure up!
3 – No Impact
If you want your business to stand out from the digital noise, you need to create an effective brand. One of the significant downfalls of DIY business website design, website builders, and free templates is the lack of customization. Using a free website builder or buying a pre-made template means that hundreds, if not thousands, of other business websites are using the same design. That alone makes DIY business website design highly ineffective for most brands.
Furthermore, most DIY website templates only allow for very minimal customization. In some cases, even simple customization is not an option. And without a custom design, your business website will simply blend into the digital noise blend. And all of this becomes an even bigger problem if you don’t have an existing brand identity; most new businesses don’t.
Professional web designers or agencies provide additional services that can make a difference for your business website. Professionals can help you develop a brand strategy that gives your company a consistent brand image. Not only will that make your other marketing and print collateral cohesive. It will give your business a polished look that will get you noticed.
Another important consideration is the content you need for your website. Yes, of course, you can write your own and use your images. But we have seen enough examples that we don’t recommend that. To make their website content shine, most business owners benefit from professional content creation, including copywriting, photography, and videography. DIY business website design includes neither.
4 – No Search Visibility
Most business owners simply think of the actual design when considering the DIY business website design approach. While that may seem pretty straight forward, there is a lot of behind the scenes work that goes into developing a website. Among them is the process of search engine optimization or SEO. And that alone is a vast topic and one that most business owners don’t understand at all.
To get your business website to rank well on search engines, you need to know what you are doing. You will want your website to do well in search results, which means there are several things you must do to improve your search rankings. But even if you have the latest SEO tools, many DIY website templates significantly limit what you can do.
Unless you have experience working with website code, your on-site and on-page SEO will not measure up to that of a professionally designed and developed business website. Go ahead and do a Google search for your industry or service, and see who comes up first. The companies that invested in professional development most likely rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs.) In other words, if you want to rank, you better forget about DIY business website design.
5 – Not Optimized
Another serious concern with DIY business website design is the fundamental lack of security and performance. Most DIY website builders or free templates offer minimal protection and are unable to meet the high traffic volumes. This type of website is more likely to be compromised, and leaking private information can be fatal for businesses.
Professional website designers will offer technical solutions. These keep your business website running smoothly and protect it from cyber attacks and other malicious threats such as malware. Also, they can help improve website performance and page load times, which is another key ranking signal for search engines. DIY business website design means that you have to figure this out yourself.
6 – No Cost Savings
Another reason that many owners opt for DIY business website design is a common belief it is the cheaper option. The cost of a business website or hiring a professional web designer or agency is often a deciding factor, especially for startups and new businesses. However, DIY business website design will end up costing you much more in the long run.
Look at it this way. It is not just the initial investment; it is the return that investment provides for your business. If you do go the DIY route, you run the risk of making all kinds of mistakes because web design is not your expertise. Professionally designed business websites not only receive more traffic. They will encourage your potential customers to take a look around and convert them into your consumers.
You need your visitors to stay on your website long enough to learn enough about your brand to purchase your product or services. You don’t want them to go to your competition for their needs, do you? Most DIY websites inevitably lead to that result, which is another reason why DIY business website design is not helping you succeed.
7 – Wasted Time
For most of you, web design is not your expertise. You may well think that a ready-made theme or template will save you time. But in reality, you will spend hours merely learning how to install and configure the theme, add your content, and make modifications to match the theme to your current branding. It takes a lot of research to find color schemes, images, and fonts that reflect your company’s brand.
Let’s break this down a little more. The average business website takes our team around two weeks or 80 hours. We spend about a day of that time researching the required functionality, testing frameworks and plugins, and collecting the needed components. We usually figure on four days of design, two days of adding content, and one day for tweaks and edits. Don’t forget that we are experts and know all kinds of shortcuts that the average business owner doesn’t.
An essential business website that takes our team 60-80 hours can easily take the average business owner anywhere from 120 – 160+ hours or more! That is anywhere from 3 to 4 plus weeks you should spend running your business instead! Imagine all that you can do with that time that will be much more beneficial to your business than DIY business website design. Of course, you could simply take an extra 2 or 3 weeks off, or take an additional half-hour for lunch every day!
Especially when you are a small business owner, your primary focus should be running and growing your business. By hiring a professional web designer or agency, you save time learning how to create and update your business website. And that is a primary reason that DIY business website design is not a good idea.
8 – Little or No Support
There is a little known secret in our world. Professional web design is 20% design and development, 75% troubleshooting across different browsers and devices, and 5% of WTF moments. Welcome to our world! Unfortunately, most business owners only see the “fun” part when considering DIY business website design. It takes a lot more than that to build a useful business website.
There are all kinds of bugs and technical glitches that can occur with your small business website. Seemingly constant updates to Google’s mobile-friendly algorithms can complicate things even more. Not only are professional designers always looking for better solutions, but they are also more familiar with implementing them. DIY business website design usually requires a steep learning curve, and that hurts your business.
And then there is the whole aspect of hosting and maintaining your business website. Yes, many DIY business website design options include hosting and even some support. But is that the best option for your needs? There are many different options for business website hosting that a professional can help you understand. And most also provide regular website maintenance and support options that a DIY business website design project generally does not include.
9 – Expensive to Modify
Many new businesses consider DIY business website design only as a starting point. The idea is to start on the cheap with a DIY website and upgrade to more custom design at a later date. I advise against that approach! For several reasons, this is most often a costly option.
Many DIY template builders are set-up so that a website developer can’t even make customizations to the template, or access the website code. That means that any customizations or changes you may want in the future will have to hire a professional web developer. And usually, that will end up costing you more than getting a professionally designed website in the first place.
Even worse, most DIY template builder services are what we call hosted solutions. Hosted solutions mean you cannot quickly transfer your website to another hosting provider. If your domain name changes, or if you need to move your website, you would have to invest in a new website. A new website will end up costing you more time and money and take away all of the work that went into the original site.
The DIY Business Website Design Alternative
Let’s face it, folks! The only way to get a business website that will work for you instead of against you is to work with a professional web designer right from the beginning. You need to look at this as an investment in your business success. I am sure most of you engaged the services of other professionals to help you get started, such as a lawyer or business consultant.
WordPress has a market share of 62.5%, making it by far the most popular CMS today. Squarespace’s market share is 2.7%, Wix’s is 2.3%, Weebly’s is 0.6%, and GoDaddy’s Website Builder’s is 0.4%. W3 Techs
A professional can offer you better options and solutions than the DIY business website design approach ever could. They can help you avoid common business website mistakes and help you establish a useful business website right from the start. And for almost every small, new, or startup business, that is a much better, faster, and cheaper option than DIY business website design. We are here to help!
Do You Need Help Building Your Business Website?
Here at PixoLabo, we offer a full range of mobile-first business website consulting and design services, including mobile-first web design and development, e-commerce solutions, search engine optimization, brand strategy, and design, and business website hosting and maintenance.
Feel free to reach out to us and learn more about our mobile-first business web design services. Our team can determine what type of website will best support your business objectives and build it for you.
Did You Build Your Business Website?
Did you build your website? If so, how did that go for you? Do you have anything to add to our list of DIY business website design concerns? Maybe you have your own horror story you can share? Please leave your comments below so our audience can benefit as well, and grab our feed, so you don’t miss our next post! And help other business owners get an excellent business website without having to go through the DIY business website design pains by sharing this post with them!
Thank you! We appreciate your help to end bad business websites, one pixel at a time!