What’s the best way to go about designing and building a great website for your business?
How much should you expect to pay?
How much can you save by doing the easy bits yourself?
This post answers all these questions and more.
A discussion on building websites
Last week I got on a Skype call with some participants on our WordPress with Digital Marketing programme – and the topic under discussion was designing and building a new WordPress website.
You can listen to the complete audio below (83 minutes) but first let me summarise a few of the key points:
Not everyone should build their own website
Even though setting up themes and plugins on WordPress is very straightforward (once you’ve learned how to do it) that still doesn’t mean that everyone should attempt to build their own website.
In fact, most people probably shouldn’t.
In terms of web design: few people, in my experience, have a good eye for space, colour, typography, alignment, composition and all that design stuff.
Even when buying a beautiful WordPress theme, you can make a complete mess of it with just a few clicks if you don’t know what you’re doing. And most people don’t.
Secondly, in terms of website development: getting your WordPress website to function the way you want is often a matter of finding and configuring the right plugins.
But things go wrong, stuff gets complicated – and this is when you need someone who knows how to troubleshoot.
I mean, you can write a manual and teach people how to do something step by step – but if they miss a step, or if there’s a slight change to the interface, or if something else goes wrong – they’re lost at sea!
So the point is: web designers and WordPress developers (two separate skills) are talented professionals and you should consider hiring them if you’re serious about getting a great website .
Clever website manager do it cheaper
On the other extreme, I’ve encountered plenty of people over the years who went straight to a professional freelancer or design agency – and got fleeced!
If you don’t know what you want in terms of web design and how your site ought to function, and you can’t explain what you want – and you need a web designer to basically give you a crash course on assertiveness and digital marketing – then chances are you’re about to make a very expensive mistake.
Once you understand what WordPress can do in terms or digital marketing and automating key aspects of your business – then you can play around with a few plugins and plan a website around that.
And once you couple that with the understanding that you can pick out a beautiful theme and use it as a starting point for your sites design then you’re looking at saving on upwards of 70-90% on the price the other guy is going to pay.
Check it out: The 20 best places to buy WordPress themes
Listen to the call
Below you can listen to the full 83 minute call – hosted by myself, with 8 small business owners in attendance from a number of industries (including doctors, artists, a soft drinks company owner, a speech therapist, a business consultant and more).
We discuss all the issues related to building a website – from choosing the best web hosting, and finding the best themes to outsourcing and finding affordable freelancers on websites like Elance.
Members of wpappled.com have access to a private forum where they get help building and managing their website.
If you have questions related to anything discussed on this post then please fire away in the comments section below. I’d be delighted to hear about your upcoming project and to help in any way that I can.