Why Cheesy DIY Website Builders Are A Bad Idea For Your Business
I love the DIY spirit. I try to apply it to my own life whenever and wherever possible. There are just so many fun things to learn in this lifetime! And learning new things, at least for me, is something that makes life more enjoyable.
That said, I think anyone would agree that there are times when doing it yourself is just NOT a good idea. There are many many reasons for this but here are a few examples:
Sometimes it’s dangerous
If you don’t know how to wire your own home, I wouldn’t recommend “giving it a shot”.
Sometimes the time commitment isn’t worth it
Could you learn to install a septic system? Maybe. Are there other things you could learn that would be more fun, take less time and, ah….smell better? Probably.
Sometimes the risk of having a shitty end product isn’t worth it
I’ll refer to the septic system here again! And, by the way, relate this one directly to what will happen when using a DIY builder for your business’s website.
Why Building Your Own Business Website is a horrible idea
In the interest of keeping this article short – something I tend to suck at – let me just say a couple of quick things.
First of all – You don’t know what you don’t know
This is kind of a catch phrase nowadays, but I love it. And it applies in spades in this situation. While businesses like WIX and Weebly and hosting companies like GoDaddy spend a LOT of money advertising their substandard website builders they (obviously) aren’t going to tell you what limitations those builders have – especially for businesses.
Well, let me save you the suspense…those types of site builders have MANY limitations. So many in fact that a business that takes itself seriously and wants to grow really should just avoid them from the start.
Sorry/not sorry, GoDaddy and WIX – but no amount of hipster OR Hip-hop speak from hired actors (that are entirely clueless about the product that they’re promoting anyway) can ever change that fact.
Just what ARE these limitations of which I speak? It boils down to the difference between open source software and non open source software. Again, I am doing my best to create a short(er) blog post so if that kind of thing interests you, I do have another article for you to read HERE.
Secondly, I am NOT trying to insult anyone’s intelligence
I absolutely DO believe you can/could learn what you need to learn about website building and search engine optimization in order to create a successful website for your business. So, no, I don’t consider myself a brain surgeon because I can build a nice looking website that can get ranked. What I AM saying though, is….do you really have the TIME to learn to do it correctly? Are there better places within your business where you could place your focus? I am guessing that there are.
You’re Not the Boss of Me!
I’ve dealt with enough people (myself included) to know that there are just some folks out there who, no matter WHAT anyone tells them, are going to go ahead and “do it anyway”, in spite of (because of?) what they have been warned against. I call it the “You’re not the boss of me” syndrome.
So. for those people, let me make a few potentially helpful suggestions for you so that this article doesn’t wind up being much more than just a simple warning without any presentation of solution!
If you MUST Build it Yourself, then…
Suggestion Number One – Learn WordPress
And when I refer to WordPress I mean the REAL version of WordPress that you install on a server, NOT the public version of WordPress. This is CRUCIAL. I tell you to learn WordPress because it IS Open Source – and while it is far from the ONLY Open Source Builder out there, it has the smallest learning curve (depending on the theme you use). Rest assured though that there ABSOLUTELY IS a learning curve! And each element (in terms of functionality) you add will also have its own learning curve attached to it as well.
At the end of the day, however, it (WordPress) will still be your best bet.
Suggestion Number Two – Learn at least the bare bone minimum about search engine optimization
After all, there really isn’t much point in taking all kinds of time in learning to create a nice website for your business if you have NO idea how search engines (cough – Google) will ever find it. Don’t panic, you likely don’t have to do a SUPER deep dive on the topic – but you do at least want to get your feet wet. Of course just how much you’ll need to learn will all depend on the type of business you have, its location and the amount of competition you’re up against – but for the average small brick-and-mortar business in small town America, this advice will generally hold true for the short term.
I have tried to steer you clear, if you’re a business owner, of using cheesy, sub-par website builders for your business. The main reason being just how INCREDIBLY limiting they are.
I have also suggested that if you absolutely, positively, and under ALL circumstances MUST build your own website that you take the time to learn an opens source solution – specifically WordPress in order to do so.
I very much advocate a “do it right the first time” approach.
If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you in the comments section below.
Also, if you know of anyone that might benefit from this information, please feel free to pass this article along via social media or however else you see fit to do so!
All the best!
Marc is a Dad, a Web Designer, a Creator of Branding and an occasional blogger . (and probably in that order!) with some affiliate marketing thrown in for good measure.
He owns Thirsty Fish Graphic Design, A one-man web design biz., based in Corning, NY which is in the heart of the Finger Lakes Region of Upstate NY.
He enjoys physical fitness and healthy eating to an annoying degree, playing guitar, playing piano, sketching and most of all hanging with his daughter doing just about anything!