Do You Need a Custom Website Design or Will a Template Suit Your Needs?


If you are looking at setting up a new website or re-designing your existing website, you have no doubt been wondering whether you need a custom website design or if you can find a template that will meet your needs. Some website designers will tell you that templates are never a good choice, but I have found that simply is not true. Sometimes a template can fit your needs and may be the best option for you and your current business goals. Other times, using a template is going to lead to frustration, because it simply will not ever be able to meet your expectations, which will end up costing you more money and time in the long run to replace it with a custom website.

The template versus custom decision depends on a variety of factors including:
· Your marketing budget.
· Time you have to dedicate to the project.
· Your business goals.
· What your competitors’ websites look like.
· What you want to be able to accomplish with your website.

Pre-Coded Templates

Five years ago, templates were not a suitable alternative. Today, thousands of pre-coded templates are available and serve as a great starting point for most small businesses. Many of these pre-coded websites are responsive, meaning that they’re compatible with tablets and mobile phones. Selecting a template and customizing it so that its unique to your company can save you more-than-half of the development costs associated with building a custom website from scratch.

Custom Website Design

A custom website is completely unique to your brand and guarantees that no other company has the same look or feel. In essence, it’s a direct representation of your organization. Custom website design starts with a full discovery process, conversion planning, and goal setting, followed by the actual design of each page per the desired user experience. Your site can look precisely how you need it to, function without limitations, and be built on your preferred content management system (CMS).

The Pros and Cons

A template might be right for you if:
· You need a relatively inexpensive option.
· You need to be able to establish your website quickly.
· You don’t need any special functionality, or a bunch of intricate visual effects
· You’re one of those go-getters that can, and will, do it yourself.

However, you may want to avoid a template if:
· Your needs are unique and cannot be found in a template.
· You want to avoid having a website that looks like others in the marketplace.
· You or your staff don’t have time for the project.

A custom web-site might be right for you if:
· You want your website design to reflect other on-line and off-line branding.
· You want to tailor your website to your marketing strategy and business goals.
· You need your website to function beyond basic sales transactions or generation of sales leads.
· You are uncertain about what you need in a website and need the help of experienced professionals.

However, you might want to avoid a custom website design if:
· Your website budget is extremely limited.
· You need to get your website up and running quickly.
· You anticipate that your website will function only as an aide to your brick-and-mortar location.

So What’s the Verdict?

Overall, if you have a small budget and want to get your company website up quickly, a pre-coded template might be the route you want to take. But if at all possible, I recommend exploring your options with a custom website. In the end you will be much more satisfied working with an expert to create the look of your site custom-made to you.

At Raxa Design, we've been designing websites for more than 10 years. Our websites are intended to look great and generate results. Discover how our custom website design services can improve your brand and improve your business. Explore our website design services or request a quote.


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