Tag Archives: online

Are Online Website Builders Good For Business?

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web-builderAs a business owner considering their options for a website it can seem that the choice is nothing short of startling, not to mention sometimes bewildering.

From freelancers to large web design agencies and from self-created websites to those created through one of the many website builders.

Because of this choice we know that it can be all too easy to become overwhelmed, so we thought we’d spell out the pros and cons between using a web design agency and using one of the many website builder platforms.

So, what’s out there?

It seems that the selection of website builders continues to grow, but the question is whether they’re any good. Some of the main ones include Wix, Weebly and Squarespace and by looking at these generally we can get a glimpse into some of their strengths, as well as their limitations.

How cheap?!

Let’s start with the number one reason why website builders most certainly do have a place in the market: and that is budget. Website builders can cost nothing at all, with Wix even providing a free domain name for an entire year, and of course as you’re designing it yourself you aren’t paying for professional design services. That said the world of web design is most certainly a misleadingly complex one and guiding your user through your website and over to making a purchase or contacting you is far from easy. It takes years to finely hone user journey skills

Timing is everything

Even the most simplistic looking of websites can still take a considerable time to create and you really need to consider this when weighing up the cost of a ‘free’ website.

Little quirks

Just as with any technology, each of these platforms has its own strengths and weaknesses and because of this each of the website builder platform may come with a few quirks that you may otherwise be unaware of. Take Wix, for example, this platform seems to be far more precise than Weebly and you are more likely to move an element on your website page or rearrange it entirely if you don’t pay attention to every little move and click that you make. Squarespace on the other hand tends to be more robust than both Weebly and Wix and can handle even the most novice of users (the quirk is then that the design possibilities are relatively restrictive).

In short there is no substitute for bespoke web design services; one to one professional help will inevitable create a better quality and a more immersive user experience. That said, the collection of website builder programmes do have a place in the market (as is clear from the many millions of websites that they produce). Most certainly then these can serve the smaller of businesses well with websites that act as basic, but shiny, looking online brochures.

Going past this however, the input of a professional who can truly lead your visitor from first click to contact form or product purchase and as such their skills should be thought of as invaluable.

Are We Over-Reliant On Technology?

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too-much-technologyIn both our work and private lives over the last ten years, technology has come to the forefront. Whether it is checking in with family around the world on social media, developing new international clients or finding new business solutions through websites, the Internet and the associated hardware is at the forefront of most everything we do.

But does this mean we have become over-reliant on technology?

Without the Internet

So imagine life without the Internet. You start work at the beginning of the day and need to communicate with twenty-five customers. So out comes the writing pad and you write the same letter 25 times. It then goes in the post and is received by your customer three days later, at which point they write back and the whole process takes a week. As opposed to email which takes seconds to send and the same to reply to, as well as sending to all of those customers at the same time.

But that’s just a simple example. Many companies simply wouldn’t exist if we didn’t have the technology now available. Big names like Amazon and eBay only exist because of the internet and make our lives easier – no more walking around the shops searching in vain for that CD you want, you just search the website and order it.

In fact, 29% of people say that their mobile phone is the first thing they look at in the morning and over three quarters say that the newest mobile tech is the most helpful thing in their lives. Over half of those with kids even think the prevalence of technology has helped make them better parents.

Business Life

For businesses, the impact is even bigger. With the Internet comes instant access to so many tools such as the IT support London firms need when technology malfunctions, provided by companies like Foration, Northern Star & SysFix, as well as access to new customer markets through online marketing and the chance to liaise with other businesses. So while technology has become essential in our daily lives, this doesn’t necessarily mean we are over reliant.

The main pitfall businesses can fall into is not preparing for changes in technology. Looking back over those ten years, the computer has changed rapidly, the mobile device has come to the fore and the tablet has been created. High-speed Internet has come along with a greater coverage than ever. So having access to the right kind of support if technology does fail is crucial, as well as having disaster recovery plans.

Coping with Disaster

Having a plan in place to cope with a disaster may sound dramatic but for more businesses, this can be anything from a physical threat such as a fire or flood in the building to a software threat such as viruses or hackers. The disaster recovery plan is there to have business continuity and to help save lost revenue – downtime is lost money, after all. Because technology is such an intrinsical part of what we do, then having a plan to deal with its failure is crucial. After all, the worst-case scenario might never happen but if it does, having a plan in place to deal with it will be a huge relief.