Every small business should be looking into having their own business website to remain competitive in this internet era where more and more customers are looking for products and services online. Having a one page website is better than none at all. However, if you want to have a website with more than just the contact information for your business, where do you begin?

There are many free software for you to instantly start up your website. For instance, Google and MYOB have come together to create Getting Aussie Business Online to give 50,000 businesses a free website with your own free .com.au domain name. You will get the website for free for the first year and subsequently pay $5 per month. There are other websites that offer tools to enable you to design and host your website for free.

The other option is to hire a professional web designer to help you develop your business website. Obviously, this will incur extra expenses which may cut into your business budget.

Here are some thoughts on the pros and cons of the above†two options.

DIY Website

Advantages:

  1. This option saves you money as most of them are free to use. Some may incur a small monthly fee to host and maintain the website.

  2. This option is good if you are just starting to think about having a website for your business. You will discover what you really want on your website and the purpose of your website.

Disadvantages:

  1. Your website may end up looking like many other websites because you are using the same template to build your website. You cannot customize your website to suit your individual business needs.

  2. You may also end up spending a lot of time learning to use the software and trying to fix problems if the website does not work the way it should. Often, you are expected to know how to use the computer and be internet savvy.

Hiring Professional Web Designer

Advantages:

  1. You may get better return for your investment in a professionally designed website. A professional website designer can give advice on the design of the website and suggestions to make the website work for your business and achieve the purpose of having your own website.

  2. Your website will look professional and uniquely suited for your business. Your website will stand out among your competitors. Customers will feel confident to deal with you and are more likely to stay on your site for longer.

Disadvantages:

  1. A professional web designer may cost you from a few hundred dollars to a few thousand dollars depending on how complex your design is and the functionalities needed for your website. An eCommerce store will cost more than an information website.

  2. There are so many web designers out there ranging from very experienced designers to amateurs who just want to earn some money. You need to invest time to do your research and find a designer who is trustworthy to build a professional website at a reasonable price. A good referral is often the best. However, if you donít have one in hand, make sure you can find a designer who is willing to work with you to find the best website solution for your business.