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Web Design - Do it Yourself or Hire a Professional?
I’ve been developing websites since 2009. Since then, I’ve spoken to many people who, in order to save money, decided to create their own website. In most cases, this is usually done by using free or low cost software tools.
Generally speaking, my conversations with people that don’t have the requisite knowledge and experience in the craft of web development, usually goes with me asking something like this: “How’s your website doing? Is it living up to your number of visitors, leads and sales expectations?” Unfortunately, on most occasions, their reply is a resounding “No.”
Developing websites that yield the type of results that you’re looking to achieve, is a skill that requires a deep knowledge of what marketing strategies it takes to promote your business, product and/or service. To reduce the expense of having a website, you may think that building a website on your own may be the best option. In the vast majority of cases, that’s simply not a very good approach! You need the marketing knowledge and skills of a professional web developer and marketer to help get visitors to your website.
It’s takes knowledge, skill and time to learn how to develop a website that can consistently bring you visitors, leads and sales from your efforts. Additionally, regular updates to your content, products, offers and technology is vital to your ongoing success. It takes a skilled web developer, with a vast knowledge of internet marketing principles and techniques, to help increase your chances of success on the internet.
6 reasons why a professional web developer is the best option
A professional web developer is skilled in marketing strategy, SEO, web hosting, plugin and browser compatibility, proper design layouts, coding and much more. Of course, you can learn these things on your own. But, it takes lots of time and experience to gain all the knowledge that it takes to create a successful website that gets you website visitors, leads and sales. In the end, you’re more likely than not, to discover that investing in the knowledge of a skilled professional would have saved you plenty of headaches and time.
Marketing Knowledge - When it comes to your business, you can make the case that nothing is more important than marketing. Because, no matter how good your product or service is; no matter what kind of results you believe you can get for your clients, if they don’t know about you, you won’t have leads, and without leads, you don’t have clients. And without clients… guess what? You don’t have a business.
It’s not enough to know what your niche is; you also must know how to target and market to the exact audience that’s interested in your niche. The right professional web developer will not only build you an attractive website, more importantly, he or she will also have the marketing skill to create a website that is fully functional. In other words, he or she will study your niche, your competitors, your products and/or services, and your market.
If you don’t have the time, knowledge or skill to do these things (in conjunction with creating your website on your own), you can pretty much expect that your family and friends will be your only website visitors.
Know Your Audience - A web developer can aid in this because it’s his or her job to research what draws your potential visitors to your product or service. They will consult with you to evaluate and comprehend the culture, brand and type of business you run. This is especially important if you are running a business for profit. The goal is to stand out, by having a website that is easy to use. Your website is like an online sales brochure and it should be competitive in whatever market you engage in.
SEO - Search Engine Optimization is about increasing traffic to your website so that it’s viewed in the top listings on search engines, like Google or Bing. If you have heard the term “getting organic traffic,” in most cases, SEO is what is being referred to (along with social media engagement and blogging content). If your goal as a website owner is to get visitors, SEO should be a primary goal of yours. It’s a professional web developer’s responsibility to do the research and apply the proper tactics to make this possible for your website.
Applying SEO tactics to your website may take a little time to see the results compared to paid ads (like Facebook Ads for example). But, SEO is a free solution that organically grows your business with top rankings for your site.
Website Technology - Website technology and trends change constantly. If your website is more than two years old, it’s probably already outdated. It’s the web developer’s responsibility to stay current and up to date on these changes. A professional web developer will inform you about new ways to bring traffic to your website, because you hire him or her to be informed and knowledgeable about these new technologies and trends.
If you have an annual maintenance contract with your web developer, he or she can consistently update your website or teach you on how to do so yourself if you have the time and desire to do so. The benefit in having this type of training, especially if you don’t have a maintenance contract with your developer, is that it can help you to future-proof your website.
Credibility - The goal of having a professional web designer is to assist you in establishing a brand that represents trustworthiness with your target audience. Knowledgable web designers are up to date on legal requirements and policies that your brand needs to uphold. I’ve had a couple of clients that had requested that I add licensed music to the videos that they wanted me to edit for their websites. As a web developer, it’s my job to inform my clients of the legal ramifications of copyright law infringement and how such violations may potentially impact their business. Additionally, as a professional, it’s my responsibility to offer alternative legal solutions that may satisfy my clients’ goals.
The truth is that as of 2019, there are approximately 1.94 billion websites taking up cyberspace real estate; of which only about 400,000 of these sites are currently active.
Every business, charitable organization, independent professional, and influencer that’s looking for visitors, leads and more sales/donations needs a piece of that cyberspace highway to park their website on.
Your website is an online brochure that serves your audience by showcasing your content, products and/or services. Because your website has to compete with tons of other websites on the internet, simply creating a website in and of itself, WILL NOT move the needle towards your goal of profiting from your website. You need more than a website - You need a plan!
Simply having a website, without having a marketing strategy (i.e. SEO, blogging, video marketing, call to actions, sales funnels, etc.), won’t be enough to meet your (visitors, leads and/or sales) goals. A professional web developer is purposeful. They go beyond simply “designing” your website. They will also consult with you about your business, your brand identity, the culture of your organization, your competitors, your goals, and more. A professional will not only build you a great looking website, a professional will also make sure that your website is modern, technically functional and built with the intent of meeting your strategic marketing goals.
As a website owner, it’s important to understand the big WHY behind your actions. There are a lot of questions to be answered when it comes to creating a website and growing your business. Once you figure that out, you bring in your core values. At that point, you should be asking yourself, “How do I use the success of my website and the growth of my business to give back to my family, my community and the planet?”
Aligning your entrepreneurial goals with your values makes life much more rewarding and joyful. So, as you decide on how to move forward with your web development plans, remember life is short. Empower yourself to do great things. Be better. Become a steward of change in the world!
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