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The Hidden Cost of DIY Website Development

July 01, 2013

If you needed a new car to get around town, would you build it yourself? There are a select few who could confidently answer yes, but the vast majority of people would entrust the construction of a finely tuned machine to experts with the appropriate tools and skills to accomplish such a task. Sure, we may know how to change the oil or replace a flat tire, but regular maintenance aside, building an automobile isn’t simply slapping parts together. So why do so many people take the DIY approach to building their own websites? 

Those commercials offering fast and easy self-made sites make it look so simple to create a polished, highly personalized website. But more often than not, the end result looks less like what we see on the commercials, and more like a thrown-together jumble of information with loads of clip art and little to no consideration of the user’s expectations or needs. It’s sort of like seeing an advertisement for a dinner entrée at a restaurant and finding that it looks nothing like the ad in real life. 

Many popular DIY site-builders have more complex tools available that can give your site a unique feel, but those tools are often difficult to wield for novice users. Herein lies the hidden cost of “free” or inexpensive DIY websites: The time you spend buried in reference materials and building your site is time you could be using to build and manage your business. What’s more, just because you’ve built a site, doesn’t mean it’s going to be effective; and a bad website can hurt your business more than not having a website at all. 

Building a website is more than just making something that looks appealing, it’s also about functionality and content. Just because it looks cool, doesn’t mean it’s usable or useful. It takes teams of people to make sure a website comes together: designers build the appearance of the site; content developers who write copy to make the site easily visible on search engines; user interface developers give the site life and a unique feel; and programmers connect all the pieces to make sure the site and all the intricate details function the way they were intended. 

Customers utilize your services because they trust your expertise. They come to you because they know they could not do it better themselves. The same ideal holds true for your website. You can certainly try to build your own site; it’s not impossible, but the result may not be anything close to what you originally imagined. Instead, trust experts who have the skills and knowledge to take your ideas and translate them into a functional and user-friendly site that elevates your company above the rest.

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