Your business has marketing materials already. You’ve bought a web address and comparison-shopped for hosting services.
You might ask yourself, then, “Why do I need to pay professional rates for web design? Can’t I cut a corner here?”
Well, of course we’re going to say, no. If you want a respectable website design for your business, then you need a professional website designer. But we’re going to back up that assertion with answers to four common rebuttals.
Why Not Buy a Stock Website Design?
There are website design superstores that sell stock, ready-made templates. Here’s the cost/benefit breakdown: The fewer times they sell each design, and the more effort they put into that design, the more you pay to use it.
Here are the pitfalls of buying your business’s website design template from such a place:
- In order to protect their product from piracy, those designers take steps to ensure you can’t easily modify those designs. Once you hire a custom web designer to tweak the site, they’re often going to take one look at the source and be forced to say, “I can’t work with this. We have to start over.”
- If you buy a unique website design from such a provider, you’re either paying for a cookie-cutter and forcing your website to fit into that mold, or you’re paying for custom website design services. In the latter case … so much for avoiding custom website design services!
- The only way to get real discount prices from those providers is to buy a design that everbody’s already seen before. If you know the first rules about branding your company, you know that failing to be unique, means failing to brand.
So, when you buy a stock website design, you can certainly launch your website quickly and cheaply, but you’re really only delaying the inevitable cost of a professional service.
Why Not Copy Source?
In about 20 to 60 hours’ time, a competent HTML hacker can take another company’s website design source code, and reduce it to a blank template. A person who can do that, will often charge bare-bottom prices, and you could even hire someone overseas where the cost of living is a pittance.
If you go this route, your final cost to deploy your business’s new website design could be as low as $50, give or take hundreds of thousands of dollars in legal damages and/or a few years in prison.
Website design source code is protected by international copyright law, and companies have lawyers who scour the web daily looking for someone to sue.
Even if the original author didn’t take the step of registering a copyright, that code is automatically protected. At least in the United States, there are regulations stating that the first publisher of a piece of intellectual property, automatically gains copyright protection without having to file.
More Reasons to Invest in Website Design
For our other two rebuttals on why you’ll save yourself time, money, and hassles by selecting a good website design firm and planning your site’s development in detail before you begin, see part two: Is Professional Website Development Worth It?