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It goes without saying (or not) in this fast-paced modern-day world, it’s really important to have an engaging website that not only interacts with your current audiences but draws in new visitors.
An attractive and well-optimised website can be one of the most efficient and cost-effective ways to generate leads for your business, especially if it has been built and marketed correctly from the very beginning. Regardless of whether you’re a small business or large organisation, maintaining a strong online presence is critical.
We sometimes get asked; “Can you design the pages and we’ll then add the content later?” This really doesn’t work for a bespoke design. After all, the design should fit around your overall message - not the other way round. Let's say you may need to write 200 words to get your message across - why should you have to try and condense this down to 100 words just so it fits in a pre-designed area?
You want to create copy that captures your audience. And, producing high-quality content will help improve your website in many ways. Statistics show that high-quality content converts more sales. Period.
A small amount of great content can be better than pages full of poorly written content. When it comes to bespoke web design, ensure that your content is fresh, high-quality and of interest to potential visitors. Most importantly, get your content written first before you start the design process.
Today, over 50% of people conduct searches and use the web on their mobile or handheld devices. If your business doesn’t display a mobile-friendly interface, you’ve already lost more than half the opportunities for new visitors or even clients.
Responsive design on a mobile device means that a website grows and shrinks with the size of the device it’s displayed on, offering a fully immerse and interactive experience. If your site isn’t mobile-friendly, the pages won’t sit correctly on the device, pushing potential customers into the arms of industry competitors.
Google has been pushing the importance of engaging, error-free and fast loading mobile websites for a long time and it plays a major part in their Mobile SEO algorithm. Users engage with mobile content very differently to when they’re sat in front of larger screens. We often strip-out or change content for mobile devices, streamlining the user experience.
You’ll also need to consider the other side of the coin. As screen sizes are getting bigger, how will your website look on very large screens? The last thing you want is your website to look like a postage stamp on a football pitch!
There are literally millions of off-the-shelf templates available. These can be picked up for under £50 - you just need to add your own content. Simple? Not always. The first challenge is trying to find a template which actually fits your exact requirements. This can often take hours and usually only results in finding something which is 70% close to what you’re looking for.
The second challenge is bending the template to fit your needs. Not that easy. After all, these templates have been designed for one reason - to promote to the mass and sell as many as they can of that one design. They are designed and built generic for a reason!
When creating a website, it’s essential to ensure that it’s built and designed to the highest standard. Templates are usually full of code bloat and are much slower to load than a bespoke solution.
Yes, this really does happen. We don’t have enough fingers to count on how many times we work with new clients where the incumbent agency has used a template - tweaked it and passed it off as bespoke design. This wouldn’t be that outrageous if the client had paid the price of a template, but Agencies (who we won't name) are charging top dollar for templates.
Why would they do this? Time. Designing and building a bespoke solution takes expertise and a lot of effort. A simple bespoke brochure website can sometimes take 80+ hours to produce. So if you’re receiving quotes for £500 they are either working for £6.25 an hour or they are using a template.
If you’re getting quotes for a new website, definitely check with the web design company if they are using a template. That’s if they will tell you! If you’re serious about dominating your competition online, then the only way to go is bespoke.
If you want a bespoke website that has been custom built to your exact requirements the best thing to do is to hire a specialist. Yes, this route will be more expensive than a template, but in this industry, you really do get what you pay for!