Why not just do a cheaper template based Web design for my business?
It is easy to understand why small business owners are attracted to the idea of a simple website based on a generic template. Many business owners feel pressured to have at least some form of Web presence and often look for a simple and cheap alternative to a professionally designed website.
However, if you are serious about developing a credible and profitable Web presence, you need to consider the following:
1) The visual impact of your site on potential customers:
Various large studies conducted by Stanford Web Credibility Research have yielded the following:
We find that a broad range of design decisions – ranging from visual elements to information architecture to the use of advertisements – can powerfully influence whether visitors are likely to find a site credible. Like human communicators, Web sites benefit (or suffer) based upon their appearance. . . We find that people quickly evaluate a site by visual design alone. When designing your site, pay attention to layout, typography, images, consistency issues, and more.
The bottom-line: Quality custom web design dramatically increases your credibility on the Web. It’s really that simple.
2) The advantage of hiring a professional to design your site:
Even if you have some basic HTML training or experience, you should hire a Web professional if:
1. You do not want to learn the many Web Design and Usability Guidelines for good Web design.
2. You are unfamiliar with Web Standards, or the varied needs of different web browsers.
3. You do not understand Search Engine Optimization.
4. You do not want to spend a lot of your valuable time working on your web site.
3) The need for picking the right professional for your needs:
The Web services industry is very competitive. With so many firms and freelancers to chose from, selecting the right professional for your Web project can become a daunting task. Here are three suggestions to keep in mind when looking for a Web designer:
1. Skill. Make sure that your prospective Web professional has the right skills for your project. Ask questions. Do a little research. Check out their portfolio.
2. Communication. Web professionals are people, not computers. To develop a Web site that meets the expectations of yourself and your customers, you need to find a Web pro that you can easily and comfortably communicate with. Communication = Shared Expectations = Success.
3. Be objective and use your critical thinking abilities when interviewing prospective Web pros. Choosing a web professional is much like choosing a Doctor. Your needs and temperament must mesh with the skills, knowledge and temperament of the professional you chose.
Because I am a Web professional myself, I am confident that after you compare my services to my competition you will chose me for your Web Design needs. Whoever you choose, you can feel comfortable that you’re making the right decision to develop a branded, custom website that will help you gain credibility and trust on the Web.