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Having a website to promote your business is more important now than it ever has been. In today’s ever-increasing digital world, a website is your shop window into your products and services. A well-designed, professional website will help to expand your reach to existing and new customers, establishes credibility, boosts online visibility, and therefore search ranking, and improves engagement with your customers 
In fact, 75% of consumers admit to judging a company’s credibility based on its website design. But when it comes to designing and building a website, there’s often the dilemma of bespoke versus template design. Whilst there is the obvious advantage of cost with template design, particularly if it’s a start-up business, opting for a bespoke design and build will be more effective long term. 

Why good website design is important 

There are several reasons why good website design is important for your business. As well as drawing attention, for all the good reasons, it also acts as a platform for promoting your products and services, plus lots of other information about your business. 
A well-designed website will create that all-important positive first impression and make you stand out from your competitors. Indeed, it takes around 50 milliseconds for a visitor to form an opinion about your website. Here are some more good reasons why website design matters: 
SEO ( Search Engine Optimisation). As well as the website being aesthetically pleasing, it also must be optimised for online organic searches. This includes where your CTAs are located, user experience, functionality, and engaging content. 
Builds trust. A well-presented website that displays reviews and testimonials, including links to professional associations, building backlinks as well as giving a user a good experience, helps to build trust and credibility. 
Brand consistency. Building brand consistency across all your website pages, social media channels, as well as offline material, goes a long way to building loyalty and engagement with customers. 
User experience. The better the website design and build, the more likely your website will deliver a positive user experience. Just think, 88% of online consumers are unlikely to come back after a bad experience. 
Performance. A great website design will attract traffic and encourage visitors to explore your website further. This improves conversion rates and ultimately, revenue. 
Recommendations/social proof. Statistics reveal that 57% of internet users won’t recommend a business that has a poorly designed website. That is a lot to lose due to an unresponsive, slow-loading website. 
So, now you know why website design is important, why are bespoke website designs better than templates? 

Custom websites vs template websites – the differences 

There are plenty of platforms out there that offer template website design, and there is a plethora of website designers, too. But what is the difference between the two? 
A custom website is designed and built from scratch by a website designer/developer. A template website can be built by anyone and is developed from a pre-determined design or template. Let’s look at some other differences. 
Adaptability and scale. A template website is far less flexible and is often limited in scalability and adaptability as your business grows. A custom website incorporates the functionality and flexibility to allow it to grow and develop with your business, like adding new features or expanding your product range. 
Security. With a template, they often rely on third-party providers and updates from a security perspective, with security coding that may not be able to run with the latest plugins or CMS security versions. But with a custom website, you do not need to rely on third-party updates or outdated coding. This ensures security is consistent and thorough. 
Functionality. Template designs come with limited functionality while an experienced web developer will add any functionality you wish, and allow for more to be added later. 
Appearance. Whilst the template may be what you wanted initially, there is little room for making any changes to the design and layout of the website. With a custom website, your website designer can make those little changes you want, and you’ve got the option to update it later – there are no limitations to the look and layout of the website. 
SEO. Search Engine Optimisation is critical for any business these days, particularly when it comes to website design. Whilst templates are built with SEO capabilities, you may find that you have a limited amount of control over how SEO tactics are implemented due to the CMS features. But a custom-built website puts the control of SEO firmly back into your hands. Customised SEO options can be incorporated, adapted, and changed, including specific URLs, metadata as well as schema markup. 
Maintenance. Although most template designs are easy to maintain and there is usually plenty of support if you need it, keeping it up-to-date is time-consuming. The advantage of a custom website is that it can be built with an easy-to-use CMS that has unique coding specific to your website. This allows developers to fix any problems quickly and apply updates simply. 
There’s a lot to be said for template websites, particularly if you have a start-up business and funds are limited. But if you choose this option, you’ve got to be aware of the limitations associated with them. 
When considering bespoke vs template website design, think about the future of the website and your business in terms of growth, expansion, flexibility, and security. The answers to these may determine which choice you make and while a template may seem a better decision initially, long-term it could hold you back. 
It’seeze Web Design Watford offers affordable web design,custom built for start-ups and small businesses. We create professional, cost-effective, mobile-friendly websites that are bespoke to your company and brand. Combining our easy-to-use website editor with ongoing expert local support, we offer website design in Watford, St Albans, Hemel Hempstead and North London. Get in touch to create the website of your dreams and turn your business into a success. Contact us for more details. 
Tagged as: Template websites
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