website not built by a professional web design expert getting negative reviews.

Is Your DIY Website Costing You More Than You Think?

You dream of a website that converts visitors into customers, but “professional web design” sounds expensive. Think again! This article explores the benefits of affordable professional web design and why it’s the smarter choice for your business.

Every business when they first start is thinking about how to control expenses and keep within a tight budget. I’ve seen the adverts for Go Daddy, Wix and Squarespace, where they make it sound so easy to build a website that anyone can do it, and the initial cost sounds cheap.

I have to applaud their marketing strategy but unfortunately what they don’t tell you is that what you need to build is so much more than just a website and there are hidden costs they don’t tell you about.

Let me explain by breaking this down into 6 fundamental categories:

  • Web Design & User Experience
  • SEO
  • Mobile Responsiveness
  • Security & Maintenance
  • Business Focus
  • Cost vs Value

I know your time is precious, so I have split this article into two sections. Read the first section (it’s nice and short and to the point), and if you are not convinced continue to the more “comprehensive” explanation where I promise you, you will be glad you did!

Here goes.

Why Professional Web Design? (for an open-minded audience)

Web Design and User Experience (UX)

Professional web designers create visually appealing sites with a focus on UX, making it easy for visitors to navigate and find the information they need. This can lead to higher conversion rates (turning visitors into customers).

Poor website design is the single biggest reason why customers abandon a website.

Forrest Research

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

A well-designed website with proper SEO practices will rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs), making it more discoverable by potential customers. Experienced web developers understand SEO best practices and can optimise your website accordingly.

60% of website traffic comes from organic search

Moz

Mobile Responsiveness

A website with a professional web design will be responsive, meaning it adapts to different screen sizes (desktops, phones, tablets) ensuring a seamless user experience for all visitors.

54% of all web traffic globally comes from mobile devices.

Statista

Security and Maintenance

Professional web designers stay up-to-date on the latest security threats and can build websites with robust security measures in place. They can also handle ongoing maintenance tasks like software updates and plugin management.

Business Focus

Building a website yourself can be a significant time investment. Hiring a professional frees you up to focus on running your business.

Cost vs. Value

While hiring a professional web designer is an upfront cost, the return on investment (ROI) can be significant in terms of increased sales, leads, and brand reputation.


STOP.

If you get it, then you can stop reading now and congratulations you have just saved yourself a lot of time, heartache, frustration and money in the long run.

However, if you still believe creating the website yourself might still be the better approach, please read on.

Why Professional Web Design? (for the stubborn DIYers)

Web Design and User Experience (UX)

A professional web design and UX offers a range of benefits that go beyond aesthetics.

Increased User Engagement

  • Intuitive Navigation: Professional web designers prioritise clear and logical layouts, making it effortless for visitors to find what they’re looking for. This reduces frustration and keeps users engaged with your site for longer.
  • Visually Appealing Design: They also understand user psychology and employ design elements that create a positive first impression and spark user interest through the clever use of colour, imagery, and typography strategically to guide users through the website.
  • Accessibility: They ensure your website caters to users with disabilities by following accessibility guidelines. This expands your potential user base and fosters inclusivity.

Improved Conversion Rates

  • Clear Calls to Action (CTAs): A professional web design will have CTAs that are prominent and easy to understand, directing users towards specific actions you want them to take, like making a purchase or signing up for a newsletter.
  • Frictionless User Journey: They eliminate unnecessary steps and optimise the user flow, ensuring a smooth and seamless experience that encourages users to complete desired actions.
  • Data-Driven Design: Many professionals leverage website analytics to understand user behaviour and optimise the website based on real user data. This data-driven approach leads to a website that caters more effectively to user needs and drives conversions.

Enhanced Brand Reputation

  • Consistency and Cohesiveness: A professional web design will align with your overall brand identity. This visual consistency creates a sense of trust and professionalism, strengthening your brand image.
  • Emotional Connection: Creative web designers can build websites that evoke emotions and create a memorable brand experience. This emotional connection fosters brand loyalty and advocacy.

Statistics to Consider

slow loading website graphic

40% of users will abandon a website that takes too long to load (professional design and development will optimise website performance.

Source: Kissmetrics

illustration of a man liking products and services on his moble.

Users who are happy with a website’s usability are 2x more likely to trust that brand

By investing in professional web design and UX, you’re creating a website that not only looks good but also functions well, keeps users engaged, and ultimately drives results for your business.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

SEO encompasses a variety of strategies that can significantly boost your website’s organic traffic, the visitors who come in through search engines like Google without needing paid advertising.

  1. Increased Website Traffic: This is the most prominent advantage. By ranking higher in search results for relevant keywords, your website becomes more visible to potential customers searching for products or services you offer. This translates to a larger pool of website visitors who are likely interested in what you have to offer.
  2. Targeted Traffic: Effective SEO goes beyond just ranking high. It involves targeting specific keywords relevant to your niche or industry. This ensures that the visitors you attract are genuinely interested in what you do, leading to a higher chance of conversions (turning visitors into customers). Professional web designers understand the importance of this and how to execute it.
  3. Cost-Effectiveness: SEO is an organic traffic generation strategy, meaning you don’t have to pay for every click to your website, unlike pay-per-click (PPC) advertising. While SEO requires ongoing effort, it offers a sustainable and cost-efficient way to attract visitors over time.
  4. Improved Brand Credibility: Search engines like Google prioritise high-quality professional web design in their rankings. Ranking well through SEO can be seen as a mark of trustworthiness and expertise by potential customers, boosting your brand credibility and reputation in the online space.
  5. Long-Term Benefits: Unlike PPC ads that stop showing when you stop paying, the benefits of SEO are long-lasting. Once your website is optimised for search engines and ranks well, it can continue to generate organic traffic for a long period of time.
  6. Competitive Advantage: The digital world today means most businesses have to compete online. By prioritising SEO, you gain a significant edge over competitors who might not be focusing on search engine optimisation. Ranking higher in search results puts your professional web design in front of more potential customers and increases your chances of capturing market share.

Check out our SEO for Small Business Website – How to Increase Your Searchability article for a more in-depth look at SEO.

Statistics to Consider

ilustration of a man holding a phone ready to search on the interenet.

Over 60% of website traffic comes from organic search.

Source: Moz

illustration graphic of top web search receiving all the clicks.
The top organic result on a search engine results page (SERP) receives over 30% of all clicks.

Source: Backlinko

Investing in SEO ensures your website is discoverable by the right audience, leading to a steady stream of organic traffic, improved brand reputation, and a significant competitive advantage in the online marketplace.

Mobile Responsiveness

With over 56% of all searching globally done via mobile, having a mobile-responsive website isn’t a luxury, it’s a necessity. I would even go a step further and say it is time to consider upgrading to a mobile-first website.

Enhanced User Experience (UX)

  • Seamless Viewing Across Devices: Responsive and professional web design ensures your website adapts to different screen sizes, from desktops to tablets and smartphones. This eliminates the need for users to pinch, zoom, or scroll excessively, creating a frustration-free and enjoyable browsing experience on any device.
  • Faster Load Times: They are optimised for mobile browsing, often leading to faster loading times. This is crucial because mobile users are more likely to abandon websites that take too long to load.
  • Improved Accessibility: A responsive design ensures your website’s content and functionalities are easily accessible to users regardless of the device they’re using. This fosters inclusivity and caters to a wider audience.

Increased Engagement and Conversions

  • Better Click-Through Rates (CTRs): A user-friendly mobile experience encourages users to stay on your website longer, interact with your content, and click on your CTAs (calls to action) like “buy now” or “learn more.” This can lead to higher conversion rates and ultimately more sales or leads.
  • Reduced Bounce Rates: Bounce rate refers to the percentage of visitors who leave your website after viewing just one page. Responsive professional web design keeps users engaged and reduces the chances of them bouncing off due to a poor mobile experience.
  • Improved User Satisfaction: When users have a positive experience on your mobile website, they’re more likely to be satisfied with your brand overall. This can lead to repeat visits and customer loyalty.

SEO Advantages

  • Mobile-First Indexing: Google now prioritises mobile versions of websites for indexing and ranking. A responsive website ensures your site is optimised for mobile search, potentially leading to higher rankings in search results when users search on their phones.
  • Better User Signals: Mobile responsive design can lead to a more positive user experience, which can be a positive ranking factor for search engines. Factors like “time spent on site” and “lower bounce rates” can all be influenced by a mobile-friendly design.
  • One Website, Easier Management: With a responsive and professional web design, you only need to maintain one website that adapts to all devices. This simplifies website management and saves time compared to managing separate desktop and mobile websites.

Statistics to Consider

illustration graphic of a woman usinh her mobile to search on the web

Over 54% of all web traffic globally comes from mobile devices.

Source: Statista

illustration graphic of woman buying online via her mobile

Websites that are mobile-friendly can see conversion rate increases of up to 74%.

Source: Unbounce

By making your website mobile-responsive, you cater to the ever-growing mobile audience, improve user experience and engagement, and potentially boost your website’s search engine ranking. This translates to a website that works for you, attracts more qualified leads, and drives better business results.

Security and Maintenance

Security and maintenance are crucial aspects of website ownership, and neglecting them can have significant consequences.

Security Benefits

  1. Protects User Data: Websites often collect user information like contact details or even payment information. Robust security measures like firewalls, encryption, and regular software updates safeguard this data from cyberattacks like hacking or malware infection. This protects your users’ privacy and builds trust in your brand.
  2. Prevents Downtime and Data Loss: Security breaches can lead to website downtime, where your website becomes inaccessible to users. This can result in lost revenue and damage your reputation. Regular maintenance that includes system backups ensures you can restore your website quickly in case of an attack and minimizes data loss.
  3. Maintains Compliance: Many industries have data privacy regulations that require businesses to implement specific security measures. Staying up-to-date on security best practices helps ensure your website complies with relevant regulations and avoids potential legal issues.
  4. Reduces Risk of SEO Penalties: Search engines like Google can penalize websites that have been compromised by malware or security vulnerabilities. Regular security checks and updates help maintain a healthy website and avoid negative impacts on your search engine ranking.

A professional web designer would understand the importance of security and what needs to be done to make sure your website is safe and protected.

Check out our Protect Your Website: SSL Guide article for a more in-depth look at security.

Maintenance Benefits

  1. Improved Performance and Speed: Over time, websites can accumulate clutter like unused plugins or outdated code. Regular maintenance like cleaning databases and optimising code ensures your website loads quickly and functions smoothly, delivering a positive user experience.
  2. Enhanced Functionality: Technology constantly evolves, and software updates often include new features and bug fixes. Regular maintenance ensures your website uses the latest software versions, keeping it up-to-date with the latest functionalities and security patches.
  3. Broken Link Repair: Links on your website can become outdated or broken over time. Maintenance tasks like checking and repairing broken links ensure your website remains user-friendly and avoids frustrating visitors with dead ends.
  4. Content Freshness: Search engines favour websites with fresh content. Regular content updates, whether it’s adding new blog posts, updating product information, or revising old content, keeps your website engaging for users and signals activity to search engines, potentially improving your ranking.
  5. Peace of Mind: Knowing your website is secure and well-maintained allows you to focus on running your business with peace of mind. Managed website maintenance plans offered by professionals can free up your time and ensure your website remains secure and functional.

Investing in website security and maintenance isn’t just about safeguarding your website, it’s about protecting user data, boosting website performance, and ultimately enhancing your brand reputation. Professional web design experts will prioritise these aspects, creating a reliable and secure online presence for your business.

Business Focus

When you hire a professional web design expert to build and maintain your website, you free up a significant amount of time and mental energy to focus on what you do best – running your business.

  1. Increased Productivity: Building and maintaining a website can be a time-consuming task, especially if you don’t have the technical expertise. Hiring a professional web designer takes this responsibility off your plate, allowing you to dedicate more time to core business activities like generating leads, managing customer relationships, or developing new products or services.
  2. Reduced Stress: Website development can be a complex process, involving tasks like coding, design, content creation, and SEO. Hiring an expert to create a professional web design eliminates the stress of managing these technical aspects and allows you to focus on tasks that directly contribute to your business goals.
  3. Improved Expertise: Experienced web developers possess the knowledge and skills to create a website that is not only visually appealing but also functional, user-friendly, and optimised for search engines. You won’t need to spend time learning the intricacies of web development yourself, and you can leverage the developer’s expertise to create a high-quality website that represents your brand effectively.
  4. Strategic Advantage: A well-designed website can be a powerful marketing tool, helping you attract new customers and convert them into paying clients. Professionals can create a website that aligns with your overall marketing strategy and incorporates best practices to maximise your website’s impact on your business goals. This strategic approach can give you an edge over competitors who may have a less effective online presence.
  5. Scalability and Future Growth: As your business grows, your website needs may evolve as well. An expert can deliver a professional web design that is scalable and can accommodate future growth. They can also provide ongoing maintenance and support to ensure your website remains functional and up-to-date as your business expands.

Additional Points to Consider

  • The time you save by not building the website yourself can be reinvested in other areas of your business that may yield a higher return on investment.
  • Hiring a professional web designer allows you to access their network and potentially benefit from their experience and connections in the digital marketing space.
  • Peace of mind: Knowing your website is in the hands of a qualified professional web design guru allows you to focus on your business with the confidence that your online presence is well-managed.

By delegating website development and maintenance to a professional, you gain valuable time and resources to focus on core business activities and drive the growth of your company.

Cost vs. Value

While the upfront cost of hiring a professional web developer might seem high compared to building a website yourself, the value proposition goes beyond the initial price tag.

Potential Cost Savings

  • Avoiding DIY Mistakes: Building a website yourself can lead to costly mistakes, especially if you don’t have the technical expertise. Professional web designers can identify and prevent potential problems from the outset, saving you money on fixing errors down the line.
  • Time Saved is Money Saved: The time you invest in building and maintaining a website can be significant. Hiring a professional frees you up to focus on billable hours or other revenue-generating activities. In that sense, the cost of the developer can be offset by the increased productivity of your time.
  • Long-Term Value: A professional web design is an investment that can pay off for years to come. It’s more likely to be well-designed, secure, and optimized for search engines, leading to potentially higher ROI (return on investment) through increased sales, leads, and brand reputation.

Value Beyond the Cost

  • Increased Sales and Conversions: A well-designed and developed website can significantly improve your ability to attract and convert customers. Effective design, user experience, and SEO strategies implemented by professionals can lead to a higher number of leads and ultimately more sales.
  • Enhanced Brand Reputation: A well-designed and well-functioning website creates a positive impression on potential customers and strengthens your brand image. Professionals can create a website that reflects your brand identity and instils trust in your business.
  • Reduced Long-Term Costs: Regular maintenance by professional web design experts can help prevent costly website problems down the road, such as security breaches, data loss, or downtime. This proactive approach can save you money in the long run.
  • Scalability and Growth: A professional web design can be easily scaled to accommodate the growth of your business. This saves you from having to completely rebuild your website down the line if your needs evolve.
  • Access to Expertise: When you hire a web developer, you gain access to their knowledge and experience. You can leverage their expertise to make strategic decisions regarding your website and its role in your overall marketing strategy.

While the upfront cost of a professional web design might seem like an expense, the long-term value proposition can be much higher. By considering the potential cost savings, increased sales, enhanced brand reputation, and access to expertise, hiring a professional web designer can be a strategic investment that pays dividends for your business.

Key Takeaways

While building your own website might seem like a cost-effective option at first glance, hiring a professional web designer offers a strategic advantage that goes far beyond the initial investment.

Think of it like this: your website is your online storefront. Would you attempt to design and build your physical store yourself, or would you trust a professional contractor to create a space that’s not only attractive but also functional and secure?

Investing in Affordable Professional Web Design

Research, there are professional web designers out there who are very good at what they do and are very reasonably priced in comparison to some of the big agencies. By investing in a well-designed and strategically built website, you’re making a powerful investment in the future of your business. Don’t settle for a DIY solution that might hinder your growth. Choose professional web design and watch your online presence flourish.


Disclaimer: Google Gemini was used to help research this article.

Are you looking for

Affordable Web Design?

Hello, I’m David Christopher. I provide quality web design for startups, small businesses and sole traders at amazing prices.

Maybe we can work together?

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About David Christopher

He is the founder of 3B Website Design.  He has over 25 years of experience in digital media, marketing and communications with 20 years working for a Fortune 500 company, heading up Digital Media & Communications for EMEA.

Website Design

March 18, 2024

Are you looking for

Affordable Web Design?

Hello, I’m David Christopher. I provide quality web design for startups, small businesses and sole traders at amazing prices.

Maybe we can work together?

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