When it comes to building a web presence to represent your business, there are many, many options to choose from. Much like purchasing a brick and mortar space, you must ensure that your webspace meets the needs of your customers, employees, business model and growth potential. Below are a few of the most common paths for getting a website online.
1) Build Your Own - Very low cost
There are several great platforms out there to build your websites. Some of these platforms are quite nice and feature rich, you can actually build a decent little site on platforms like wix.com or squarespace.
These are not bad options if you have the time to do it and understand that you own none of it when done. It is impossible to "Transfer" these sites if and when you decide to change to a different provider. Also, consider that these services are only free for basic sites, add-ons will cost you.
Before choosing a do-it-yourself option, consider your time and it's value. I have had clients come to me after putting sometimes 100 hours (and sometimes more) into a do-it-yourself site before finally coming to me because they were too stressed out to continue. Not only did they lose months on the launch time, but many, many of their own hours. What is your hour worth? What about 100 of them?
2) My Friend Knows A Guy! - Low cost ($500-$1000)
Chances are at least one of your friends knows an amateur developer living in his mother's basement whipping out generic websites for the local bar bands.
This guy will definitely get you online, but is it all you need? Will the site be responsive (mobile friendly), searchable by google and other search engines, will site traffic be tracked by google analytics? More importantly, will your new site be secure? And what about backups and on-going maintenance?
4) Website Development Company - High cost ($20,000+)
These companies produce great sites and great products, if you can afford them. Everything is created specifically for you and your business, nothing pre-fabbed and nothing reused. Imagine having your store built on an empty lot brick by brick from your designs and drawings. Wow, what a website... Wow, what a bill.
5) Website Consultant - Medium cost ($5,000-$10,000)
Unlike a development company, we use pre-built CMS (content management system) platforms, meaning we don't have to create the hundreds of files running a website behind the scenes. Instead, we are able to focus on just the front-end that the customer sees. This approach gives you the benefits of a top notch, feature rich website without the cost of a developer creating a CMS for you.
At Plus Six Publishing, we use the WordPress CMS. Worpress is an open source CMS that is known the world over. In fact, WordPress is accredited for powering more than 25% of the top 1000 websites in the world. Using this powerful CMS allows us to focus on creating beautiful, functional websites for you and your customers. We bring together design and content, as well as your values and goals to create a unique web presence for your business. Of course, if you choose a different approach I'll understand. In fact, give me a call and I'll suggest some options for you.