Websites can cost anywhere between £100 and £100,000, perhaps even more! You may have asked a Web Designer for a quote, to receive shockingly a £1000 quote when you’ve seen cheap websites on the internet for £100. Now it’s got you confused – what is the difference? Why the big gap in price? And what is the quality like?
In this blog, I am not talking about DIY websites such as Squarespace, Wix, or Shopify. I am comparing a cheap website designer to a more costly option, showing you what the difference is and why websites are an expensive cost.
Mapping and Usability
Before any website design begins, you need to have an idea of what pages you want and where it’s going to link one another. You want the pages to flow easy, to be understandable and accessible for the user. A cheap web designer won’t care about what pages are linked correctly and the general flow of the website.
With more expensive designers, like myself, they create a map and layout of the website beforehand to plan exactly what’s being connected. This sitemap will help Google flow through your website and understand that it is quality.
I often suggest to my customers simpler ways to get around the website, sometimes involving moving content. A cheap website designer won’t suggest or recommend ideas like this.
A cheap website designer may use a basic theme and simply stick your logo and a few brand colours on it. You have hardly any control over where items like text, images, or videos can go because it’s already been pre-built into the theme and locked.
With more expensive designers, like myself, I will gather a Pinterest board of inspiration and want to see your ideas for design aesthetics first, then I move onto wireframing and mapping (basically, where everything will be laid out on each page). Thirdly, I design a mock-up of each of the website pages so you can see what it will look like when it’s live. And lastly, I start to develop and build the website on the internet, using my favourite and highly customisable theme Divi by Elegant Themes. Surprisingly the last part. Throughout all of this, I ask for your feedback so you’re entirely happy. A £100 website designer isn’t going to care because this requires a few weeks of time.
I’ve looked on a few cheap web design agency’s portfolios and some of their work is very dated. It doesn’t look fresh, new and modern. I’ve seen clipart text, poor colour palettes, texture or photo backgrounds for the entire website, legibility with poor font choice, and strange layouts. It makes me cringe.
Expensive designers will have more experience with design and graphic elements. They can even guide you on what not only looks best but will convert more customers.
Cheap website designers will get a website up and running as fast as possible, and most likely within a week. This is fine if you want a website up quick, fast and not fussy about any design aspect.
Whilst more expensive designers are building almost from scratch, asking for your feedback, doing revisions, and making final checks. This can take anywhere between 3 weeks to 6 months depending on how complex the website. Personally, my websites take around 4 weeks to be completely finalised.
Amendments and Changes
Over time you may want more website pages, perhaps you’ve changed something in your business which needs to be updated on your website, or you’re adding more products. A £100 web designer and a £1000 website designer is going to charge you extra, also you’re going to be heavily reliant on them, so make sure you like the company or person.
However, I teach you how to use the website in tutorial step-by-step videos so you can have a crack at it yourself and not always feel totally reliant on me. But if you do need some extra help, can’t figure it out yourself or are a complete technophobe, I’m always here. Small changes are covered in my monthly hosting, security, and backup fee, but big additions like a new page do cost extra. Pretty fair if you ask me.
Google says 61% of users are unlikely to return to a mobile site they had trouble accessing and 40% visit a competitor’s site instead, according to Impact. Make sure your website is easy to use and adapts to mobile, tablet, laptop and desktop devices. A cheaper website designer may only be creating for the laptop or desktop, which can have a great impact on sales if you are not mobile responsive. An expensive website designer can create a seamless website, flowing from one device to the other.
It may start with a £100 website but by the time the bill comes, it’s blown way past the original price. Perhaps something goes wrong and the website crashes which means you need to get the C-H-E-A-P team on it, and boom another few hundred on the price. Another thing I’ve noticed is that cheap website design agencies offer the most basic things, such as a contact form or slideshow gallery, as some luxury asset.
Make sure there are no hidden fees! I provide my quote up front with what is included in plain black and white.
CMS (Content Management System)
A lot of website designers like myself use WordPress. A cheap website designer may also use WordPress but they may also use an entirely different CMS, which you may not have enough support from if you want to update it yourself. Did you know the WordPress powers about 23% of all websites on the internet as of 2015, according to Website Builder Expert.
Expensive website designers will take the time to optimise your website with alt image attributes, meta tags, readability, page loading speed, which can all contribute to better ranking on Google or other search engines like Yahoo, or Bing. A cheap website designer won’t even bother with this, or just focus on basic SEO and forgets the rest.
A cheaper website designer may be inexpensive because they are a beginner. It’s great to help support people who are learning but don’t expect miracles. Also, if something goes wrong they may not have built up their own support/contact of people they know who can help, meaning you’re going to end up hiring a professional web developer with a higher price to fix the problem.
When looking for cheap website design agencies, I noticed that some would state that they do not outsource and are in-house, which leads me to believe that some cheap agencies are using outsourcing. Outsourcing can be fantastic for other industries, such as professional wedding photographers, but not for website design agencies. What does this mean for you? Well, if you wanted to change something, the web design agency is the middle man, and you have to wait for everyone. Also, what happens if the outsourcer and the design agency’s relationship break down and decide not to work together anymore, what will happen to your website? This is food for thought.
When I create a website, it looks exactly how it’s supposed to look on popular internet browsers, especially Google Chrome and Safari. Google Chrome and Safari are what most people use. However, do cheap website designers check that they look correct on all? I’ve noticed myself that when I design on one browser and check the other browser, a box might be misplaced. I then go and solve this. Attention to detail.These are all things you must take into consideration before stepping into the world wide web. What questions do you
These are all things you must take into consideration before stepping into the world wide web. What questions do you want answering about website design? Leave your responses in the comment section below.
If you need a website for your retail, service based, or hospitality business, then e-mail me for high quality, professionally designed, and easy to manage websites.
Do you have any questions about website design? Ask me in the comments…
Disclaimer: Please note that I have included affiliate links throughout this blog post and may receive a commission if you click on or purchase from these companies. I only use affiliate companies that I truly recommend or have used myself.