The web keeps changing. From static pages of years gone by to Content Management Systems and frameworks. Blogs and Social Networks to templating systems, the choices are many.
Many people are looking to Templates when it’s time to update their sites. The primary reason seems to be cost and while a web based storefront, even if custom designed, is far less cost than a brick and mortar, some budgets do not allow the owner a custom designed site.
The benefit of a templated site is that you get into a fully functional website without having to incur the costs associated with a custom design. Topically it makes good sense if you have a simple site and fit in to a template designed for similar businesses.
The downside of a templated site is that you have to fit into a predetermined set of features. Yes, if the company providing the template is a design firm, and created the template, they can change it to fit your needs as they grow or change over time. So with all aspects of running a sucessful online business or application, you need to take the time to fully outline your goals and expectations and then you can best choose a solution that will work best for your requirement.
Understand that your site is really just like a brick and mortar showcase or storefront. First impressions are just as valid and the functionality of your site and how it compliments the users experience is the difference between a high end pleasurable event found at a quality retailer verses the frustration of a lesser quality establishment.
Outline the goals for your site. Take time to review your competition. Honestly evaluate your budget as well as your current operating costs. What do you spend on marketing? Is your current marketing plan producing the desired sales?
While the adage “You get what you pay for” holds true, there is no reason why you can not invest your budget wisely and start to see a higher return on your internet marketing investments.
A custom design is clean slate ready to form into whatever goals you have for your site. Whether you want to wow your visitor with concise targeting of their needs or create an application to run your business in the manner you chose, a custom design allows provides unfettered freedom to achieve your goals.
Custom Designs are not always a high cost item. For instance, if you create an application that speeds the means to achieve goals in your business, that custom design will pay for it’s self and start returning a profit over time. It’s wise to think of your investment over the long run. There’s a good chance your competition is thinking in the same manner…