Hundreds of new custom-made and template-based websites are being launched every day. Many business owners are facing the question of whether or not to invest their time and money into a custom-made website. After working with both custom and template-based sites, I can say that for a company to thrive in a competitive market, custom is the way to go. It’s a big investment at first, but is more beneficial and potentially more cost-effective in the long run.
Of course, working from a template is often cheaper and faster. You can buy it for a very low price, fill it with content and have a brand new site up in a couple of hours. But there’s a chance that your next-door neighbor has exactly the same template for an entirely different business. It’s hard to make the template look branded when it could belong to another company. You will realize how limited the template features are as soon as you decide to customize it to your needs when your business start growing. It could require more money to add custom features to the template than to build them from the ground up.
Below, I’m going to review the benefits of a custom-made website.
Unique Look And Feel
Business owners put a lot of effort into the design of their offices, especially the lobby because this is the first room their clients see when they walk in. But the lobby probably isn’t the first thing people see nowadays. Most go to your company’s website before they come to visit you in the office. Your website makes the first impression, and we all know how important that is. You have to treat your website as you treat your office and make it the best reflection of your business and values.
A custom site provides a unique identity for your business. You have full control over its look and feel. It should be in line with all other offline and online branding materials you have. The design of your site should tell the story behind your business. It is critical to carry all brand elements through your online and offline materials; the site should look like it belongs to your company and users should recognize your brand even if they don’t see the name and the company logo.
Just as a house needs blueprints and goes through a thorough planning process before you can start building the foundation, your website needs to be planned out before you start seeing mockups.
Planning is a good exercise that makes you think about your business, goals, customers and prioritization of content. It helps you identify your unique value proposition and learn about your user groups and the goals they want to achieve on your site. Many business owners realize how many things they didn’t think of when they start researching and being asked questions about their business.
While going through the planning process, define clear steps to achieve the goals and objectives of your organization. You will also have the opportunity to review your content and make sure it’s relevant, educational and engaging to your audience, as well as optimized for search engines. Planning will result in a better-structured site that will turn more visitors into customers. It could become your best salesperson.
Read the full article at: Forbes.com