Affordable Web Design
Tips to keep the costs of your website down
The best way to keep your website affordable
is to do some homework and some thinking.
How many times have you, or someone you know, walked
into a computer store to buy that advertised greal deal at $799,
only to leave the store with a $2500 fully-loaded computer system?
How did it happen?
Chances are you were not clear on what you wanted
or needed. You may have allowed a salesperson to confuse you with
technical jargon and scare tactics. Had you been more prepared,
you would not have fallen for the sales pitch.
A website is no different. If you’re not absolutely
clear on what you want and need, your affordable website will quickly
become a money pit, loaded with bells and whistles.
To keep it affordable – plan, plan, and plan
You simply can’t plan enough when it comes to your own website.
Take some time to visit your competitors’ sites to see what they’re
doing. Spend a couple of hours at a site like Coolhomepages.com
to get some design, feature, and content ideas. Make notes and bookmark
the sites so you can refer your web designer to them later.
Once you’ve finished touring, do yourself a favour
and download our Website
Planning Worksheet. It’s a free document that will help
guide you through the planning stages. And once completed, you’ll
have a comprehensive outline that you can give to your web designer
so they know exactly what you do and don’t want – right down
to what colours you like.
Prioritize your wish list
Prioritize the features that you’d like on your
site. That way, if the estimate gets too high, cutting to keep your
website affordable will be easier.
Case Study: A client was considering
an online inventory system for the thousands of parts his company
sold. By the time he arrived at our door, he was frustrated: Two quotes
thousands of dollars apart.
It became clear that he wasn’t sure this online inventory system was
feasible, or that his customers would even would use it.
We recommended that he launch a simpler – and affordable –
web presence that showcased who he was and what he had to offer.
By being flexible and prioritizing his website’s features, he was
able to bring the cost into a range that made him – and his
accountant – more comfortable.
Affordable web design is simple web design
The more features and interactivity on your website, the more money
it’s going to cost.
Problems with your site will increase with the amount
of technology used. These issues will need to be resolved before
launch, and it’s going to take time. And time is money.
For each feature on your wish list, ask yourself:
Is this crucial? or is it just nice-to-have? Is this essential,
or is it feeding your ego?
Don’t buy the hype
Not only do extra features increase the costs of your website,
they cost more to maintain. Many web hosting companies have tiered
service plans: as you increase the number of features requiring
special technology, you increase the cost of web
Domain registration companies may try to convince
you that yourcompanyname.com isn’t enough, that you need a .biz,
.org, or .net domain name as well. We even ran across one company
that was suggesting customers would be more patriotic and show their
disdain for the events of 9/11 if they registered a .us domain name.
Other companies use scare tactics: by not registering
multiple domain names, you’ll lose business or charltons will steal
business from you.
It’s all hype. It all contributes to keeping your
Don’t be afraid to say “NO!”
People spend more money when they’re feeling pressured, when they’re
made to feel that they’re missing out, or that a horrible calamity
will befall them. Don’t be afraid to take time to consider your
options. The Internet will still be here next week.
Let’s face it, if this is your company’s first website,
there’s a lot to learn about. We think it’s better to grow into
your website. Indeed, test the waters to see if anyone online even
wants what you have to offer.
If you start out with a “fully
loaded” website, you’re also
going to have to hire people to maintain it, writers to write the
content, people to answer the e-mail, couriers to ship the orders,
customer service representatives to answer the complaints, marketing
people to sell it, and advertising people to bring in the traffic.
Whew! That’s great if your website’s bringing in
the money, but if it isn’t, you’ll be left scratching your head:
“Why didn’t I just say no?”
Take it slowly.
Download your free copy of the Website
Planning Worksheet. Check out our full range of web
design services. Or call us at 416-960-8931 or e-mail
us. We’ll help you make sense
of it all.