Keys for Making Cost-Effective Web Design
What are some things you have done to mitigate the cost of investment in creating or redesigning a new business website? Some companies consider hiring a freelancer, hoping that he or she is well rounded enough to both design and develop an impactful website. Others will choose to hire an agency that tends to have more breadth and depth in the competencies that go into a website design and development project. Today, we will talk about some cost-effective web design tips that will help you minimize your cost of investment in designing a website.
From speaking with nearly 700 clients over 9 years, we have learned a lot of horror stories. We have not always been the first choice… but in cases where we were a second or third choice, our newly acquired client would share their experience with us and hope that we could either fix or redo their web project.
So be sure that you consider a web design company that has a professional, diverse portfolio of work. Proof of past success will help you mitigate any perception of risk and a credible firm is more likely to save your investment from going into the negative.
When you start your project, you should know that most small to medium sized businesses will consider developing a site with a built-in C.M.S. (content management system). This facilitates ease of use and helps make it so that your in-house marketers can initiate minor content changes without calling in a technology expert. This makes it easy to update your site for a promotion, a major announcement, or other information that is relevant and timely. With a content management system in place, you are able to easily make tweaks to your website… sometimes within minutes.
Additionally, you can use tools and plug-ins for your website to expand your email lists. At the end of the day, you want to find a way to grow your marketing database and with on-site opt-in or subscribe forms, you are better able to capture valuable marketing data.
When surfing Google or simply by watching this video, you will no doubt be exposed to a skilled and affordable web designer. Some companies will offer to host your website for you, making domain renewal and site security an easy maintenance item. So if you’re truly looking for a one-stop shop, make sure that you choose a web design company that offers web hosting in addition to design and development services.
Once your site is live, you need to be sure that you protect it. Everyday there are threats that live online. Bots and hackers will spend their days working to crack and hack websites. Sometimes, a hack may seem like it is completely without purpose and in other cases, the bad intentions are very obvious. You should make certain that a backup of your website is on your server and probably also stored offline on a drive so you can fix any problem or damage that may occur. Typically, website tests are conducted; a backup can save money in repairing the bugs and other technical issues.
To mitigate your marketing costs, try to purchase images from the Internet or use your product picture instead of paying a photographer for taking new photos or paying a web designer to make images, which can cost more than a direct purchase. It will also be good to hold the copyright so that your competitor cannot use that same image on the competitor website. If you are not totally concerned about having original content on your site, there are several sites that offer stock images for free.
When it comes to bells and whistles, animation and flash can work on your website, but they can also make your site heavy and time-consuming to load. This would not be a good thing for your search engine optimization as Google favors sites that load rapidly and are mobile friendly. Animation makes your website slow, and you may lose your search engine reputation if your site is too terribly overloaded; these type of sites also costs more to design and most often requires use of a third-party server. Videos for demonstration of your product or company overview will embed on your website easily. You can either load those videos directly to your site or you can embed a YouTube link.
All things aside, make sure that your website is user-friendly. Be sure to consider every use case and provide for easy navigation and easy access to all relevant options on the home page. From the first click, you want to help your user find his or her needs easily and quickly within your website.
Ensure that your website is visible perfectly on all browsers and operating systems like Windows, Linux, Apple Mac, and on iOS and Android smartphones. Also consider the browser visibility such as on Safari, Mozilla, Chrome, and Internet Explorer. You have invested in your website, and you should expect a return on your investment so make sure that your site is positioned to do so.
Try to avoid using multi plug-ins because many users do not update their browsers, and a certain plug-in may not work on their particular browser of choice. Incompatibilities between your site and a user’s web browser may harm your website reputation. Make sure that your website has a secure server and that sessions default to https. Without a security certificate and HTTP, your servers are unsecured and can be hacked easily. Unsecured websites can be designed and developed cheaper which can save your money initially but are unsafe from hackers’ attacks and may harm you in the future. If you own an e-commerce website, use secure payment verification systems and do everything you can to build trust with your online shoppers.
As it pertains to ecommerce websites, do not even attempt to make your own system to try to save some money because users may not trust your payment verification method. In the end, you may very well lose your customer, even reputation, and experience financial losses. In these cases, consumers understandably care about security and will not buy from your website. It’s just not worth the risks.
Use common sense and the help of expert guidance to convert a web visitor into a paying customer – yours. To learn more, reach out to the team at Accunity today.