Wix, Squarespace, or Custom Website Design? – A Guide to creating a website for your business

custom website design

You must have surely come across advertisement blocks of WIX saying “Create your stunning website today. It’s easy and free” on YouTube and other websites. Similar is the case with Squarespace saying “Easily Build Your New Website”. It sounds so simple and easy to do. When you use WIX or Squarespace you will surely feel it as an easy to use, Do-It-Yourself wizard-based tool that can help you build your website quickly without even hiring a website design company or a full stack web developer.

Your website is a part of the visual identity and brand story of your business and must speak the same language to present a holistic picture of your brand to your customers. This is where you need to make a call and decide if a DIY website is good enough for your business or you need a custom website design that speaks your brand’s design language while engaging with your customers across touchpoints of your website.

In this blog, we will take you through WIX and Squarespace based website designing, its pros and cons as well as guide you in creating a custom website for your business.

What is WIX?

WIX is an Israeli software company that provides cloud-based web development services. It allows users to create HTML5 websites and mobile sites through the use of online drag and drop functionality. WIX claims to be the leader in website creation and has over 500 website templates that suit pretty much every business.

What is Squarespace?

While Squarespace has an unmatched set of best-in-class website templates that can be customized to fit your personal style and professional needs. You can showcase your work using professional portfolio design with galleries and you can also add password-protected pages with your clients. This feature enables you to share your work securely to selective prospective clients while maintaining confidentiality.

wix website design
Image: Screenshot of WIX advertisement.

What is custom website design?

A website is not just about a few web pages having images and text that are hyperlinked together. A custom web design is a process of understanding your brand story and presenting it with a design language that articulates the message correctly to your consumers through visual presentations that engage at touch points of your website. It involves conceptualization, design execution through mock-ups and wireframes, programming and digital marketing in order to strategically position your brand offerings.

Definition of Custom Website:

Oxford defines custom as made or done to order; custom-made.

Website is defined as a set of related web pages located under a single domain name.

A custom website is a set of web pages hosted together on a single domain name which is designed or developed based on specific requirements of a brand identity. It contains engaging content and inviting interfaces that are friendly and faster.

Custom websites know who their visitors are, and give them a reason to come back again and again.

Custom or DIY website design?

Worried about how to build your website? Hiring a website design company is always a good option to build a professional website. DIY website design are also good and the choice between both has always been tricky. Here are seven questions you should ask yourself before making your decision

1. What is my budget?

2. What is my time frame?

3. How much effort will I have to invest into this web design project?

4. What is the competition I face online?

5. Do I have the time if something goes wrong with DIY website design?

6. Do I know the basics of website design?

7. Do you have a full understanding of what it takes to build and maintain a corporate website?

If you still need assistance in making a decision then read our blog “DIY or Custom Website Design?” where we have answered all these questions while remaining as neutral as we can.

Designing & building a website does only half of it’s work. The major part starts after it is live and working on the internet. Are you ready for it?

Top ten frequently asked questions about custom website design:

1. What is a custom website development?

In order to create an effective online business presence, a custom web design is the method of discovering and understanding the values of the organisation and implementing a sound approach method, customer interface, design implementation, programming and marketing. Each feature of your website is intentionally designed for your organisational objectives.

2. How much does it cost to build a custom website?

Depending upon the number of pages, features and functionality, a custom website can cost somewhere between $100 to $6000 and times even $10000+.

3. How much time does it take to design and develop a custom website?

Most web projects take about 4 to 16 weeks from the start of the project to the launch of the website. Where uncertainty is higher or where the project scope is especially broad, projects can take up to months or longer. However, a top customer website designing agency can work on tight timelines and deliver quality results.  A DIY based website would be ready in about 2 weeks time frame.

4. How can custom websites help businesses to grow online?

A website is your silent salesperson. It does its magic by just being there for you. It’s simple maths, more visitors means more sales & revenue. But, the catch here is that you can attract visitors only if you have an appealing & user-friendly website.

5. Why should businesses choose custom development?

Every business is unique irrespective of the fact that each industry has many stakeholders. Thus, your requirements are unique, and the same goes with your online business website too! So, custom development why not?

6. How does a custom designed website help you to be unique?

It helps you to be different. A custom-designed website provides you with so much more flexibility to communicate what is remarkable about your brand and your business.

7. What should be included in a custom website?

Any basic corporate website needs a homepage, about page, services page, products page (if you sell), FAQ, Testimonial page, contact page and a blog page. You can add or remove more pages as per your business type.

8. Is ready to use a web template better than custom web design?

Well, it all depends. If you are on a time crunch with a limited budget, and want a simple and minimal website, a web template could be an option for you. But, if you are looking for specific functionality, special or complex features and a website that is like no others, then custom web design is for you.

9. Does a custom designed website help improve website speed?

Yes, when a website is customized, it is worked from the code level. Expert designers can code designs smartly and reduce the website’s loading time with all necessary functionalities.

10. Does a custom website offer full control and customization of functionality?

Remember, website design is no rocket science! It is a thoughtful process, and when it comes to custom website design your website will be loaded with all potential functionality. In turn that would attract, convince and convert visitors to customers.

How to build a website from scratch?

Building a website from scratch involves teamwork. This team includes a number of specialists who collaboratively work to build a site, including graphic and user experience designers, information architects, developers, content authors, project managers, usability engineers and search engine experts. 

In order to build your website from scratch you can follow Gavin Coopers Website Design Process. If you hire a website design company then ask them to follow these processes for a seamless execution.

The process includes following stages:

  • Initiate plan
  • Understand the users
  • Build a content strategy
  • Create prototypes
  • Visualize
  • Production
  • Launch + monitor

Click here for Detailed Website Design Process Developed by Gavin Cooper

When do you need a website design company?

Your website is the only way a customer interacts with your business. Your website is the face of your company online. And if your website isn’t easy to comprehend, user-friendly, and creatively pleasing, you could lose customers or be lost. It is important to be a step ahead in the market, and that can be done with the help of a website design company. HOW? Let’s check it out.

For customization

An expert website designing company can build a personalised website for your company to ensure that it addresses all the expectations and resources necessary for success. By designing the website yourself from a design you downloaded online, features would be limited and graphics and text restricted.

For Search Engine Optimization

If you are online, it means you are competing everyday to rank higher on the search engine. Hire web designers to create aesthetic websites because they use SEO friendly ways to design a site. They know how to make a website search friendly by understanding SEO aspects through backend algorithms to improve the popularity of a website on search engines.

Saving on Time & Money

Hiring a web designer ensures that your project will be finished easily and effectively, ensuring that your website development will not be delayed further than it needs. That also means that anything fails you won’t have to waste time and money fixing your website. It will all be taken care of by the website design company.

For New Technologies

Professional web designers keep on top of technical updates, scripting, search engine optimization and more. By hiring a website design company, you guarantee that state-of-the-art technology is used to develop and maintain your website, making your market success more profitable.

How much does it cost to build a website?

Web design & development costs for the company vary from $2,000 to $75,000, while annual website maintenance will cost between $400 and $60,000. However, those rates do depend on the site’s scale and functionality. You can pay less (or more) than those figures, depending on the website.

Conclusion:

For first impressions, third-party website builders may look great, make your website attractive and be cheaper, but they do not ensure a user-friendly website, or SEO based website. These factors are crucial if you want people to buy your product or contact you to enroll for your services.

If you’re looking to receive a custom estimate for designing or redesigning your company’s website, contact us for a FREE quote!

References:

  1. Designing Brand Identity, fifth edition by Alina Wheeler, Page 170
  2. Process: Website Developed by Gavin Cooper, Designing Brand Identity, fifth edition by Alina Wheeler, Page 170

Image Source: Image by Tammy Duggan-Herd from Pixabay

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