Jeremy Hurst is Executive Director at Slightly Different, a full service digital agency. A small business owner himself, Jeremy offers his tips on what small businesses should keep in mind when first thinking about a website.
These days, having a website is critical for any business, and for a start-up business it is often the most inexpensive way of establishing a market presence, particularly when compared to the costs of setting up a high street store. Unfortunately, so many people get the basics wrong, so here’s a few tips that might help you avoid some common pitfalls when thinking about building a website:
- 1. Go pro or no? Do you go down the professionally developed route, or perhaps consider building your website yourself? While, technically, you could build your own website, if you get it wrong the results could be catastrophic. Yes, you’ll save money, but you could also save money if you did your own dentistry or represented yourself in court, neither of which I would consider advisable.
- 2. Check it out. If using a professional firm, check their previous work. Don’t be afraid to phone their clients and ask them what they think of their web developers. You might even make some new business contacts by doing this. Get references, and remember that the higher the quote, the more comfortable you need to feel that they represent value for money.
- 3. Be wary of a bargain. Don’t assume that just because one firm quotes £500 and another quotes £5,000 to build your website, that opting for the lower cost solution is the obvious thing to do. The low price may seem attractive, but you get what you pay for, and there may be a very good reason why the higher figure represents best value in terms of what will be delivered. I can guarantee that all the quotes will say they can do the work, but make sure you aren’t comparing oranges to apples and you know what you are getting for your money. In just the same way that you would likely engage a solicitor to review a legal agreement before you sign it, it might be worth speaking to an Internet expert to review the quotes and assess value for money against your requirements.
Check back next week for Jeremy’s advice on what to consider when building a business website.