The web design business offers a lot of different options nowadays. Pre-made templates, ready-made solutions, and online freelancer talent marketplaces make it so that the possibilities for website building are endless.
Yet the choice you make will naturally mean different outcomes in your final product. If you happen to be setting up a website or a digital product, you have a wide array of solutions varying in budget, quality, and time restraints. Let’s list them out from least to most expensive.
As mentioned above, a great solution nowadays for people with a tight budget is building their website by themselves via platforms such as Wix, Squarespace, or Shopify.
Unless you have received some funding or have a lot of cash you’re willing to spend, when you’re just starting out the best way to go is to find the cheapest solution out there that gets the ball rolling. When you are setting your company up, in most cases you won’t need a very elaborated website, nor for it to be perfect. A new restaurant with a tight budget, for example, would only need a platform to upload their menu, a map with their location, and their contact information: they definitely shouldn’t spend a lot of money on a top-notch agency.
Getting professional help
Another option that falls somewhere in the middle budget-wise would be to hire a freelancer who has a bit more experience using these tools. This option means having a more competent hand assisting you throughout the process and helping you avoid some beginner mistakes.
The downside to this option is that, unless you find a unicorn-freelancer who is good at everything, most hires will be either expert on design or really good at coding, or just average at both. Finding the perfect mix between design, coding, SEO, marketing and business strategy can be a complicated task.
Yet, any freelancer will most likely have more knowledge than you and will surely point you in the right direction; and at a much more affordable rate than that of an agency. This option is great in cases where you need a very specific piece of the website built, with a functionality that is a bit more complex or that requires a bit more work than you can handle.
Finding an agency
If you are an established business and have some money in your pocket that you want to spend on marketing, then you might want to consider more expensive solutions like hiring an agency that will help you define a more long-term strategy and how this website is going to help you grow your business further.
Hiring an agency means hiring a team of people that are experts in what they are doing, that have people who specialized in each part of the process (design, development, product, SEO, etc.) and will be your guiding hand from beginning to end of the project. Yes, this is the most expensive solution; but also the most complete.
Yet finding the perfect agency for your needs also requires some work. Digital agencies are businesses and, as such, have different types of business models. Some will look for quality work, taking on less work at a higher rate, while others will shoot for quantity and try to create as many websites as possible, not spending as much time on each one. The first option is probably going to be more expensive, but the results will most likely be better.
Thus, choosing the right agency is a decision that needs to be tailored to every company. Coca-Cola will probably look for bigger agencies with brand recognition, prestige, and a lot of employees. But for a local enterprise, these big agencies might be too expensive and a boutique or medium size agency would be preferable, where they would have a specific team in place and could probably reach out to the agency owner and get a more personalized treatment.
The world has changed a lot. Navigating the options for any business decision is getting harder as the number of possibilities available increases at insane speeds. More and more businesses are working remotely, for example. So, while you’re trying to figure out your options, you need to consider that there is lots of great talent outside your country: Argentina, for example, is becoming a great hub for this type of services. Offshore agencies and freelancers can bring you high-quality work at a much lower rate.
At White Canvas, we have been building custom websites and offering white label services in WordPress for over 7 years. We would love to hear your story about finding the best team to build your custom website. Which option works best for you?