It’s 2019, nearly everyone understands that for their business to succeed they need a website. But how much should you be spending? Services like Squarespace and Wix can be used for as low as $12 a month, or even for free, and freelance web developers sell their services for next to nothing on Upwork and Fiverr. Using a cheaper option is hugely attractive to small businesses, and for good reason - it’s far easier to swallow paying a freelancer on Fiverr $600, than it is to work with an agency and pay potentially thousands. However, using one of these more affordable options can actually cost your business more in the long-term.
Securing the services of an inexpensive developer through Fiverr or Upwork is, as we mentioned before, obviously attractive - and it can work out! However, it’s far more likely that the reason the prices of the developer you’re working with are so low is because their pricing is their entire value proposition. We’ve worked with a number of clients who went with the cheapest option available to them, only to get a final product that barely met their requirements, ran poorly, and was often delivered late. The website they ended up with was based on an inflexible template, with little to no individuality. Further issues were simply poor customer service, and no ongoing support - less than ideal when web standards are changing regularly.
These are just some of the reasons we caution against cheap websites, and that’s without mentioning bad back-end SEO, nonexistent accessibility features, and often poor design responsiveness. However, we’re also not saying to run out and work with the most expensive developer you can find, racking up an invoice in the five- to six-figure range. What matters is that you choose a website solution that makes sense for you. If you’re starting a small side-business and getting all your business from referrals, Wix or Squarespace should be more than good enough for your needs. But if you’re serious about your business, and you want to embrace digital marketing, cheap websites can cost you long-term. The number of potential clients you can miss out on in a single calendar year will more than make up for the money you manage to save.