A professional looking design helps tell potential customers that they are in the right place, helps them navigate through the site and feel confident in dealing with your business.
Visitors to your Web site are interested in discovering more about your business and making buying decisions. Which is why design is an integral part of the process, but what if you are working on a tight budget and can not afford a bespoke design?
Website Design Options
- Template-based design
- Custom Design and build
Templates are not necessarily a bad idea and nor are they cheating. A template can be used “off shelf” with very little modification, or used as a framework and heavily customised. It is not unusual for a smaller business to start with a generic template when starting out, and then move on to more customisation before instructing a completely bespoke design.
Customising a templated design to match your branding can save a lot of time and money: this is the preferred approach for most small businesses.
Custom Design and Build
Once the budget allows for it, I would always advise a business to employ a graphic designer to create a bespoke design. However, experienced graphic designers are not cheap!
The full design process involves a graphic designer, usability experts and developers of different disciplines. The process is not quick and is obviously expensive. But well worth it for businesses that can afford it.
You will need to give some thought to your potential visitors and what they will want to do on your website. Some sites are online brochures, providing a brief overview of the products and services on offer. Other sites aim to offer more functionality, for example, account management, order tracking etc.
Some design and functionality ideas to consider:
- Are your visitors likely to view your website on a mobile device or computer
- How will potential customers contact you
- Do you want to take and process orders online
- Will customers be able to create an account and login to check on the status of orders
- Do you want host audio or video files
- Do you need an online chat facility
We can discuss your requirements and how your site may need to adapt. Don’t be put off if you are not sure about any of this as we can spend discussing your options.