Which is more suited to my needs?
At the moment of wanting to expand a business, brand or simply want to convey a message to all, it has crossed our mind to acquire a web page to achieve greater reach. The problem is that having a website is not economical, however we live in a technological era where there are ways to cut costs and through that need free web development platforms have emerged. Yes, free.
In this article, we will go into this topic and address the advantages and disadvantages of this option and the big question that arises when purchasing a web page. Is it really free to use platforms like Wix, Weebly, Wordpress, etc? Is it better to pay fixed amounts of money to web developers or use a free development platform? What benefits me more?.
Who came first, the chicken or the egg?
While it is true that the title has nothing to do with the creation of web pages, it is an analogy that is perfect for the message we want to express. There is not really a correct answer for that question, everything will depend on a particular case.
You have to take into account certain factors:
Do you have a business that has just started and does not have a lot of investment capital?
Is the purpose of your web page to create a self-sustaining business or simply to have a platform for dissemination and online presence?
We are going to discuss and tackle certain categories in which there are cases in which the best solution is to pay for a web development and in others to keep the free pages. You must take into account the points addressed and based on that choose the one that best suits your needs.
What is a web development platform?
A web development platform, is a tool based on a cloud that replaces the language and coding design by providing prefabricated templates in which you can add functions such as catalog, contact forms, e-commerce, etc.
That is, you can design and create your own compatible web for both desktop and mobile version without the need to know html or programming language, you only select the design of the gallery of templates offered by the platforms and drag all the information you want to include, literally.
How is it different from a web developer?
Imagine that you are sick and have 2 options, go to the doctor or take the treatment that a friend suggests is effective. Which option do you prefer? Pay the professional who studied years of medicine, knows the human anatomy, the conditions and is prepared to take on the challenge of curing your illness or trusting something that could serve you as well as it could make your health even worse.
This comparison is ideal to explain the work of web developers, they are professionals who have the knowledge to realize any idea or vision that you have in mind. They know the web language and can make their own modifiable template adapted to their tastes and needs.
Not only do they create a website according to their wishes, but they do a market study and develop the user-friendly design and content, thus providing an experience that can make your page stand out from the competition and adjusted to all types of users.
The developers would be the "doctors" of their website. Your job is to diagnose, treat and track results (in the latter would enter the work of SEO and its optimization in search engines with web maintenance).
It should be noted that at this point we must emphasize the phrase "Cheap is expensive, we must take into account the experience of the person and their prices will vary based on how good are the capabilities of the developer or the agency to hire for work.
Should I then hire a professional to make my website?
Not necessarily, not all cases require it, here are some examples.
- Blogger: at this point you have to ask a key question to answer. Is my scope big enough to justify and sustain a professional design and monetary investment? If your answer is no, then probably the best option is to go to a web development platform. In the future if you want to opt for web development you can migrate the content to the new page.
- Hobby: if your goal is to share your passion with the world because you want to express your knowledge and art, then it is not necessary to hire a professional service.
- Entrepreneurs: if you are an entrepreneur whose annual income does not support or justify the expense of design, development, hosting and web maintenance, stay with the platform, do not invest yet.
- ONG: at this particular point there are 2 questions to ask. Is it worth to allocate the money that can be used for another objective? Is my organization big enough to consider investing in a professional job?
- Business: If you have an established business, hiring a web developer and having something of your own is an investment worth considering. Professionalism is an added value that adds points when deciding on a competitive market, without mentioning that SEO is a factor that really makes the difference and is worth the cost.
Having said this, we must conclude that a web page should be considered an investment and therefore all investment should generate a positive additional income. It is not necessary to spend money on something that is not going to have any benefit and instead will only generate accounts payable.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Web Design and Development Platform
Let's discuss the advantages and disadvantages of both parties.
Initial Cost: in this category, the round wins by far the development platform since it can be completely free, nevertheless it is necessary to take into account an important detail. Who will carry out the design of the web? Should I pay an employee or several to do it ?. If you decide to do it yourself, do you have the time available to spend hours understanding the platform, researching and learning about jargon, something as simple as choosing a template can take hours and hours due to the amount of resources available.
In the case of web developers there is not much to say, it is a high initial cost that must be available.
Duration: in the platform you can have an immediate result, you can create the page in 1 day (It all depends on how much you know about the platform and how many functions your website needs) but the process is relatively quick if you have clear ideas and it is a technological person.
Otherwise discover what to do and choose each thing, take time to know each option and tool of the platform could take a while and become somewhat confusing for you.
Hiring an agency or developers can take a little more time, considering the meetings to define ideas and content, then the time it takes to create a functional proposal and be approved by the client, place the final information and the final touches. But if it is a simple project and it hires very good people in the market it could have a functional site and ready to be launched in less than 2 weeks, as is the case with Zagirova Design.
Design: this point is considered one of the most important because the client is the one who will judge whether to stay with you or go to the competition, that is why an attractive and professional design is essential when selling a product . Victory is of course taken by web developers.
The platform contains templates, which means that you will not have any freedom to modify and edit things to your liking, but when you hire professionals they will do the job exactly as you ask, the result will be unique and 100 Original%.
Functions: free pages offer basic functions such as action buttons, whether they are social networks, see more, etc. They have search bars, possibility of adding videos but in general they do not deviate much from what the template offers. However, professional web development offers unique and 100% customized functions, adjusted to your needs.
If you want a header with specific movement, forms, subscription, trading platform (These last 3 are paid functions in free platforms), you can get it without having to pay an additional amount per month for the function.
SEO: it is true that web development platforms bring compatible functions and thought about SEO (some more friendly than others) but at this point professionalism is priceless, the content is created based on strategy and market research and results They will be much better.
Trade potential: here we are going to throw the word for free through the window, it does not exist. If you want to have a website with a trading platform you will have to pay how much? In the case of the agency, once the initial investment of your page has been made, you only have to worry about paying for the hosting, but with the platforms, the cost will vary depending on how much you need.
We are going to use Wix as an example to explain it.
First you will have to pay a monthly subscription and this will include functions depending on how much money you pay, the minimum payment costs US $ 4.08 per month. Is not that true? It's because it does not really include much either.
In that option they give premium help, hosting, 500 MB of storage and connect it to a domain. However, your client will have to cross all the advertisements that Wix wants to show. Why? because your page does not belong to you, it is a subdomain of Wix.
To be able to remove the ads you have to pay US $ 8.25 per month, it includes all the above and additional give you a nice custom favicon to show. At this point we are talking about almost $ 100 that you have to pay per year and have not yet offered anything that has sales potential.
Do you want to be able to include a form on your website for direct contact with your customers? in that case you must subscribe to the Unlimited plan that costs US $ 12.41 per month and additional you must pay the sum of US $ 48, if we add everything we are already talking about US $ 724.92 per year.
I have not yet mentioned the word store or e-Commerce. Why? because you must increase your plan to eCommerce by paying US $ 16.16 in order to have the possibility of a shopping cart and start selling on your website.
From the unlimited plan they mention a word called Site Booster App. What is that? It would be like a kind of basic SEO, for an additional US $ 60 you give your website the ability to be indexed by Google, therefore the traffic to your website increases and also give you what would be the equivalent of Local Business of the rich cards of Google.
Taking out annual accounts would have to pay US$ 1,489.92 for the basic professional sales functions that your website needs to be a functional online business.
Considering this and knowing that this would be a payment that you will have to do as fixed as paying the electricity bills. Is not it better to invest in your own website? and then pay only web hosting and maintenance service where you can find payment plans of up to US$ 100 per year.
Clearly it will always be better to hire professionals but before making a decision, first assess your needs and budget and based on that decide what will benefit your brand, company or project.
If you have read everything and want to hire a professional service, we recommend the packages offered by Zagirova Design. You can have advice, unique design from the highest quality specialists, unparalleled service from the agency with the largest portfolio in the country.
Request your quote here.