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Once you have decided to have a website built, one of your first decisions will be to make a choice between using a template based design or a custom web design. The route that you take will certainly have an affect on your overall business goals, so it is vital that you choose the option that works best for you. Below, you will find the pros and cons of each decision and how they will affect price, scalability, design and implementation.
Template-Based Design Pros/Cons
- Template-based sites can be built quickly, in many cases you can do it yourself.
- They incur fewer upfront costs.
- There is a big chance that they will not be optimized for all devices and screens.
- Limited ability to customize; therefore, your site may be indistinguishable from another competitors site.
- Adding custom code and/or technologies may be difficult or not possible at all.
- Many templates are not SEO friendly.
Custom Web Design
- A custom web design will allow for customizations and design that are specifically catered to your business.
- The site is malleable and can be changed and/or updated with ease.
- SEO friendly on the front end as well as back end.
- Will incur higher upfront cost, but typically offers higher ROI.
- A custom web design will take a bit longer to build than a template-based site.
- Will work on all browsers and screen sizes.
As you can see, there are certainly advantages to choosing a template-based site. However, the overwhelming evidence points to custom web design being more flexible, robust, effective and offer a higher return on investment. When considering each option, it is important to consider what type of business you have, how much traffic you need, if you want your site to be optimized for all devices, etc.
Whether you decide to go with template or custom design approach it’s important to consider the service industry uniqalities. Each service has a unique approach on what information prospects will be evaluation.
For attorney web design, focus is on credibility and high quality content. While other industries like roofing web design or dentist web design focus would be on social proof and detailed case-studies from real clients.
Our team of developers work diligently to ensure that we build each website using SEO best practices. There are a number of methods that we can deploy that will enhance your search engine optimization efforts and results such as on page optimization, copywriting and website traffic monitoring tools.
On Page Optimization: We will thoroughly research the most effective keywords for any or all of the pages within your website. Our team will insert keywords into your on page copy, headers, alt text, etc. in a natural manner. We check all of work with trusted SEO page graders.
SEO Content Writing: When you opt for our copywriting services, our team of writers will reach out to you and learn as much as possible about your business, customers and how you would like to be portrayed. Our writers use SEO best practices and ensure that all of their work is optimized and effective copy.
Tracking Tools: Our developers can insert web analytics tools like Google Analytics onto your site. This will enable you to learn how much traffic you are getting, how long they stay on the page as well as pages that visitors like and/or dislike. Tracking tools can enable your marketing department to take the next step in learning more about your customers and what they want.
Though stock images are just as popular as they have ever been; we recommend that you use as many custom made graphics as possible. There are millions of websites using stock images so it’s best that you stand out among the crowd. Using unique photos will help to highlight the authenticity and your businesses commitment to excellence.
SIn the instance that you do not have any high quality images, stock photos are the next best option until you are able to incorporate a more unique feel. Our team will search for and find images that compliment your business as well as the copy that is on each page.
Typically, stock images can range in cost from $1 to more than $50 each. It is recommended that you have multiple images on each page to maintain a visual appeal for your site visitors.
eCommerce components can be very intricate and require additional security, flexibility and functionality. If you are selling products or accepting donations, you will want to be sure that your eCommerce components are high quality, reliable and safe.
Donations: Our developers are able to embed paypal code into your site and/or connect to your current donation system. Paypal is the most popular form of accepting donations online, but there are other options that we are happy to explore.
eCommerce Components: We can deploy a variety of solutions to help you accept payments for your products ad/or services. We have options for simple transactions as well as more complex ones that require more detail.
With almost 3 billion people using some form of social media, it is imperative that your business get in on the action. Enhancing your social media presence will increase the awareness of your business as well as increase the number of site visits. We offer both on-site social media as well as social media account design.
On-site Social Media: If you have great content on your site, it’s best to get it out to as many people as possible. Our team is able to insert things like your twitter feed as well as facebook like and share buttons. This will allow your site visitors to easily find content from you as well as share it with their network.
Social Media Account Creation and Design: We have a strong team of social media professionals that knows how to optimize your social media pages. In addition, it is important that your social media accounts match the branding, feel, and messaging of your site. Our goal is to ensure that you look good everywhere online.
Constantly posting events manually as well as accepting reservations can be difficult without a capable event management system. Our team will learn your needs and implement a system that is easier for you and customer friendly.
Google Calendar Integration: Google offers a simple and effective calendar. If your business has a need to display upcoming events, this is one of the easier and cost efficient methods to implement.
More Complex Event Management: This option is for people that have multiple paid events that need to be created on a constant basis. We have the ability to implement a fully functional system that will help you to increase ticket sales as well as keep visitors on your webpage as they are making a purchase.
Many businesses do not opt to have a contact form on their website. For a number of businesses, emails and phone calls are ideal. In the case that you are selling a product or service on your site, it is recommended to have the contact form in a visible and easily accessible pace.
We are able to develop many types of forms that will allow you to automatically send thank you responses,send message notifications to you, as well as save client data. A well developed contact form helps your business to build trust and allows you to serve your customers quickly. Contact forms help to save time, money and unnecessary confusion.
Many websites have incorporated sliders into their homepage design. These are great for showcasing your products and/or services in a sleek, quick and easily digestible form. We are able to build a simple slider or a fully animated slider function.
Simple Slider: A simple slider is quick, cost efficient and effective depending on your needs. They are typically comprised of 3-4 images that have a simple transition from one photo to the next. If you have stunning images of your products, this may be the option that you need.
Automated Slider: Our fully automated homepage sliders are more robust than the simple sliders This is a great option if you have products or services that you want to be quickly noticed by website visitors. This option will take longer to build out.
If you already have a logo and would like to change it or you do not yet have a logo in mind, we have options that can satisfy all of your needs. Depending on your budget and scope of needs, our team is prepared to design something simple, quick and effective, or a logo that is more robust.
Basic Logo Design: For customers that want a quick design to place on their website in place of plain text. This option works well for the person that is not yet ready to create their full logo or doesn’t need a logo to use outside of the internet.
Full Custom Logo Design: The process involves learning your business needs as well understanding your core audience and making a logo that will resonate with them. The logo that our team designs can be used online as well as in other areas such as business cards, signs, letterhead and the like.
Designing an interior page can be quick and easy or time consuming for the more detailed oriented pages. Web pages like bios and testimonials can typically be completed within a few days. Other pages like the homepage, product pages and your cart will take longer. We take our time when building these types of pages because we ensure that we focus on building pages that will increase conversion rates by optimizing the SEO, inserting effective call-to-actions and widgets while ensuring that your site offers a great experience to the user and is visually appealing.
There are a number of reputable content management systems available online. We have worked with a lot of them in addition to WordPress. While it is great to have a content management system in place, it is useless if you are not properly trained on its functions. Our team will spend time walking you through the details of your new content management system and will be available to you, if you would ever need help.
We support our customers from beginning to end of our content management training. Though it may seem complex, we will break it down in an easily digestible format so you can walk away confident in your ability to upload new content, edit or delete old content, etc. The experts at On The Map Marketing are available to help you with all aspect of CMS training and take pleasure in teaching you a skillset that you will be able to use for life.
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