31 Jul Perils of the DIY Website
At the turn of the century, the hype was about Y2K. Today, that same World Wide Web that everyone was worrying about is the major resource for this decade’s favorite three-letter acronym: DIY.
Though DIY fails bring internet spectators countless chuckles (the ceiling fan one definitely got me), when it comes to your company’s website, you may not be smirking quite as much when failure strikes. The unfortunate truth is that 98 percent of amateur (read: DIY) would-be web designers never actually publish their website on domain.
To help you better understand why success is rare for this group, we’ve put together a list of the four major perils facing companies or individuals that take the do-it-yourself approach for their website.
Websites take a surprising amount of time to create, maintain, and optimize. You may come across an eye-catching ad guaranteeing a website in five hours or less, but what the ad doesn’t say is what you’re actually getting in those five hours: a few generic pages with your logo stamped on them, and then you’re on your own for maintenance and SEO.
If you’re looking for more than that, the adage “time is money” bears light on the situation. Not only can a team of experienced web designers and developers create and maintain a customized website that fits your needs faster than you can, but your valuable time can then be spent focusing on your area of expertise rather than on scrolling through plug-ins looking for the one that will best sell your product.
Influential 18th-century economist Adam Smith encouraged a division of labor to improve productivity. We agree. Let the experts do what they do best, and spend your time doing what you do best.
Customization is what brings value to a business’s website. The generic pages we mentioned before may be able to say what your organization offers, but a custom design will allow users to feel what your brand is all about. From the color scheme to the flow of forms, it’s the little details that will enhance the user’s experience and bring them back for more.
An experienced web team will tweak your themes and templates, hard code where needed, and make suggestions you may have never considered about what can be done to provide lasting value to your customers.
Security and maintenance
We touched on maintenance above, but now we’ll dive into why website security and maintenance is complicated and better left in the hands of professionals.
Even on management tools like WordPress, regular updates and backups are necessary. This is the basic level; the more sensitive the information stored in your website’s database, the more prone your site will be to attacks by hackers. Outdated applications and plug-ins create security risks and vulnerabilities and should be constantly monitored and updated to improve security. Hiring a team of professional developers to stay on top of your website security and maintenance will bring you peace of mind regarding your online assets.
We saved the best for last: search engine optimization. Search Engine Land provides 21 tips and techniques for SEO. Dwell on number 4, which states, “If you’re taking the do-it-yourself route, you’ll have to become a student of SEO and learn as much as you can.”
We absolutely promote gaining knowledge about this important process, but we realize that SEO isn’t most companies’ business, even though it is an extremely necessary tool to being visible online and current in your field. That’s why experienced web teams are available to provide expertise in optimizing your site (content, URLs, tags, etc.) for prime face time for your current and potential clients. Don’t go SEO alone; find a team that will partner with you for the success of your business.
You may completely rock at using a sliced okra as a flower stamp or even replacing your bathroom tile, but take a second thought about tackling your business’s website on your own. The time commitment and experience necessary to customize the user experience, maintain and secure the site and your data, and properly optimize your website are large. Hire a team of professionals that can share their specialized services with you so your website and company can avoid the perils of the 98 percent.