The evolution of website design platforms marketed to broader audiences and designed to be accessible to everyone is a net positive. Startups and entrepreneurs beginning second careers have greater access to getting their message to the masses, and creating and launching a website is more affordable than ever before.
However, this DIY movement has also led to new issues. Business leaders often overlook skilled web design freelancers and undervalue them as they take on the task themselves. Or, they ask team members who are not trained or skilled in design to perform design duties outside their primary responsibilities or skill set. So why hire a web design agency instead of keeping the project internal?
Web Design Agencies are More Efficient
Deciding when to outsource specific projects or keep them in-house is common for many companies. But, beyond budget concerns, businesses worry about outsiders understanding their vision and executing ideas that are sometimes difficult to convey.
However, businesses should almost always outsource web design projects to a freelancer or web design agency. If a local coffee shop owner also decides to take on a new website project, they will sacrifice other priorities. These might include staff development, visionary work, or the opportunity to visit customers and turn them into loyal followers.
The adage of time equals money is true. In addition, someone who is not skilled in web design or knowledgeable about the platforms will possibly spend two or three times the amount of hours on a project, only to have a sub-par or less than professional outcome.
That time is far better spent doing either work they love or work that only they can do to move the business forward.
Web Designers Incorporate User Experience
While it’s true that website design platforms have marketed to the DIYer in recent years and used marketing language that instills the belief that anyone can build a website, it’s more complicated than that.
Anyone can use website design software to create pages that live on the internet. However, not all websites are created equal. Skilled designers understand the needs of specific industries.
For example, some industries require specific types of navigation framework, color palettes, typography, visual design, or copywriting. These elements go beyond putting boxes of text on a page.
User experience is incredibly important to the success of a website, and if web design isn’t someone’s primary or even secondary skill set, visitors will notice. User Experience (UX) and User Interface (UI) are complex design considerations that require in-depth knowledge and understanding of user behaviors.
Without a skilled designer or agency with experience, non-designers overlook these elements, which can be detrimental to the business.
Web Designers Understand Discoverability
There’s a significant difference between a website with information and a website that is discoverable online for ideal customers to find.
A website designer uses a particular process to understand a client’s goals, target audience, and website purpose to build a site that converts visitors into customers. Their knowledge of design elements, industry best practices, and experience help them build websites that are both user-friendly and search engine-friendly.
Businesses that design their own websites often fill them with jargon or acronyms that others don’t understand. However, designers incorporate short and long-tail keywords into the website to enhance discoverability, while understanding the website must be written for a specific audience to understand.
If a business is hesitant to outsource web design, it should interview potential agencies and talk to previous clients. It’s also vital that the company create clear expectations, define goals and outcomes, and communicate those effectively at the beginning of any project.
Hiring a freelancer or agency is a wise business decision when made with thoughtful intention and due diligence.