do diy websites really save you money

With website builders promising “easy” and “affordable” solutions, it’s no surprise many small business owners and entrepreneurs decide to tackle website creation themselves. After all, saving money is a top priority, especially in the early stages of a business. But are DIY websites truly the budget-friendly solution they seem to be?

The reality is that the initial price tag is just one piece of the puzzle. DIY websites can end up costing your business significantly more in the long run. Hidden costs, lost productivity, and a compromised online presence can chip away at any perceived savings. Let’s explore why “do-it-yourself” might not be the most cost-effective solution for your business.

Understanding the Appeal of DIY Websites

DIY websites are those built by the business owner or entrepreneur themselves, typically without the involvement of a professional web developer. This approach usually relies on website builder platforms like Wix or Squarespace. They offer a variety of pre-designed templates and drag-and-drop editing tools that allow users with no coding experience to create a website themselves.

The appeal of DIY websites is undeniable, particularly for budget-conscious small businesses. The marketing surrounding these platforms heavily emphasizes affordability– low monthly fees and the ability to avoid upfront costs associated with traditional web development. Plus, the visual editing tools and pre-built templates create the impression that anyone can build a website quickly and easily, regardless of technical expertise.

This promise of a streamlined, cost-effective solution is what makes DIY websites so attractive. But as we’ll explore in the next section, the true cost of a DIY website can extend far beyond the initial price tag.

The Hidden Costs of DIY Websites

The initial “savings” offered by DIY website platforms can be quite deceptive. While it might seem like you’re getting a bargain, the reality is that many of the features needed to create a functional, professional website are often locked behind higher-priced plans or require additional costs. Let’s break down some of the hidden costs that can add up quickly.

Constant Upgrades

Website builders often use a tiered pricing structure. This means they attract users with low-priced basic plans. However, these plans frequently lack the features essential for running a successful business website. If you need elements like a custom domain name, e-commerce functionality, the ability to remove platform branding, or any advanced features, be prepared to upgrade to more expensive plans.

Essential features like e-commerce functionality, advanced analytics, or the ability to remove ads often require upgrading to more expensive plans. These seemingly small monthly increases can quickly eat into your budget, negating the initial cost savings you might have expected from the DIY approach.

Add-On Fees

DIY websites typically come with a limited set of built-in features. To bridge those gaps and create a truly functional website, you’ll often find yourself relying on third-party add-ons or plugins. While some of these are free, many essential tools, like advanced SEO plugins, security enhancements, or robust e-commerce solutions, come with their own fees.

These add-on costs can pile up fast. One premium plugin for analytics here, another for booking appointments there –  before you know it, you’ve added several additional monthly subscriptions on top of your website builder’s fee. It quickly erodes the initial cost savings and can create budgeting headaches when you’re juggling multiple subscriptions.

The Investment of Your Time 

DIY website platforms are promoted as quick and easy solutions. However, the promise of effortless website creation is often misleading. Even with drag-and-drop interfaces, there’s still a significant learning curve involved. You’ll need to invest time figuring out the platform’s limitations, its quirks, and how to make the templates work for your specific needs

Troubleshooting issues can also be a major time sink. When something goes wrong, you’re likely to spend hours digging through knowledge-base articles, forum threads, or attempting to decipher technical support jargon. 

It’s important to remember that your time is your most valuable resource as a business owner. The hours spent wrestling with a DIY website platform might seem like “free labor,” but in reality, they represent a significant opportunity cost that could be better spent running your business.

Lost Revenue 

Finally, the limitations of DIY websites can have a direct impact on your bottom line. The results often fall short in terms of design, functionality, and user experience when compared to professionally developed websites. The limitations imposed by pre-built templates and drag-and-drop tools can result in a website that feels generic or fails to effectively reflect your brand’s unique identity.

Potential customers often make snap judgments about a company based on their website. If your site comes across as unprofessional, outdated, or difficult to use, it negatively impacts brand perception and can lead to lost sales opportunities. Visitors might leave your site before ever engaging with your products or services, opting for a competitor with a more polished and user-friendly online presence.

Ditch DIY: Get a Website That Works for Your Business

All in all, DIY websites offer the illusion of effortless website creation and low costs. But in reality, these platforms often end up costing you more in the long run due to hidden fees, time commitments, and lost revenue caused by a subpar online presence.

That’s why Vervology developed eXpress websites, the perfect alternative for small businesses. Our eXpress plan is designed to get you a professional website launched fast, with affordable monthly pricing and zero upfront fees. Best of all, you’ll have the ongoing support of our small, US-based team to keep your website running smoothly.

Ditch the DIY headache and invest in a website solution that fuels your business growth. Reach out to our team today to learn more!