Yup. According to LSA’s (Local Search Association) April 2017 report, “The Digital Consumer Study,” 63 percent of consumers primarily use a company’s website to find and engage with businesses. That’s a pretty big chunk of consumers. Combine that with the fact that 93 percent of online experiences begin with a search engine—you do the math. Another compelling reason your business needs a website? Research by YellowPages and LSA found that, on average, consumers use approximately three sources before making an individual purchase decision, and 30 percent automatically strike a business from consideration if they don’t have a website.
I’d choose the template with support, because every company has its own ways and techniques of creating templates and I’d want someone at my service, ready to explain how things work in every particular case. For example, take a look at the comprehensive collection of themes from TemplateMonster as they're provided with such an option and a lot more.
I'm a top-rated graphic designer & inbound marketer with 5+ years of experience in marketing and design roles. I've helped a long list of happy clients achieve top-tier website designs, eBook designs, infographic designs and digital marketing campaigns. I come from a background in both marketing and design and clients typically appreciate my ability to produce campaigns and designs with a focus on high-quality aesthetics, conversion and results. Whether you're looking for a UI designer to rework your website or an inbound marketing expert to help you craft a campaign, I'm confident I can lend a creative eye to your project and achieve outstanding results. Would you like to collaborate? Please feel free to get in touch over phone or email to chat about your needs and goals!
While you can code up your designs using just HTML and CSS, if you can also program using JavaScript, you’ll have a huge leg up against the competition. JavaScript allows you to take static elements on your site and make them interactive—think Twitter feeds that update automatically, websites that look different when you’re logged in, image sliders, and more!
And then there’s HTML’s partner, CSS or Cascading Style Sheets. CSS is the code that tells browsers how to format and style HTML for a web page. In other words, it’s what makes all the text and other content look good. With CSS, you can adjust the colors, change the fonts, or add a stunning background—and so much more! This is where your eye for design really shines and how you can put your creative stamp on every site you create.
Wix boasts a similarly easy-to-use interface, and is immensely popular because the site offers users hundreds and hundreds of free design templates to choose from. It doesn’t matter what industry you’re operating in. Chances are, Wix will have a free template that caters specifically to your needs. After selecting a template, the site’s drag-and-drop feature makes drafting your first website a quick and painless process.
The FAQ page is your space to answer the most frequent questions you are asked. The frequently asked questions (FAQ) page will tell everyone – on one page – what they need to know. This will save you time answering those same questions on an individual basis. Provide honest answers for each one. Your answers should be a call to action, and persuade a potential customer to take the next step and buy whatever you’re selling.
I'm a top-rated graphic designer & inbound marketer with 5+ years of experience in marketing and design roles. I've helped a long list of happy clients achieve top-tier website designs, eBook designs, infographic designs and digital marketing campaigns. I come from a background in both marketing and design and clients typically appreciate my ability to produce campaigns and designs with a focus on high-quality aesthetics, conversion and results. Whether you're looking for a UI designer to rework your website or an inbound marketing expert to help you craft a campaign, I'm confident I can lend a creative eye to your project and achieve outstanding results. Would you like to collaborate? Please feel free to get in touch over phone or email to chat about your needs and goals!
Sampling of existing websites I designed and/or maintain: Backyard Beekeepers Association (a WordPress site I designed), Global Earth Repair Conference (a WordPress site I designed), Inland FoodWise Online – Newsletters and Action Alerts for the Inland Northwest Foodshed (Drupal 7 site built from scratch), Friends of the Trees Society (rebuilt ancient html site using Drupal 7), Inland Northwest Permaculture Guild (Drupal 7 site I’m rebuilding from a previous Drupal 6 site), my friend Gabe’s website Fungi Permastead (a WordPress site I designed), Spokane Community Gardens (a Drupal 7 site), Protect Mill Canyon Watershed (a WordPress site I built and maintain). I co-maintain an existing Joomla website for Crimson Sage Nursery and maintain this blog (utilizing a free WordPress account). I also work part time for WSU maintaining several websites of various projects of the WSU Mt. Vernon Extension office (Western Washington Tree Fruit & Alternative Fruits, Vegetable Research and Extension, Pacific Northwest Vegetable Extension Group, Vegetable Seed Pathology Program, Small Fruit Horticulture Research & Extension Program) and I do work on a pre-existing Drupal 7 website for WSU’s RosBREED program.
I think this is great content, full of value and helpful information. When creating a website, yes a word press or hiring a web designer to build a website for you is great also, although this to me is only best fitting for businesses that do not fully understand how the internet and marketing works. If you feel you need to spend thousands of dollars or even a dime to be honest to have a great website is completely fabricated and #fakenews created by website designers and so called digital consultants, to stay in business and keep there industry afloat. wwwDluxroses.com is a perfect example of not having a professional website designer build your website. Their business is booming not because of there website and how pretty it looks although I’m sure it would help them gain more customers lol but it hasn’t stoped them from growing because they got the business and marketing aspect right. Great post! Love your value, Educational Content is King. #DigitalHandShake We Create Customized Websites. Our Website Design Service Is 100% Risk Free. The Only Website Builder To Offer Such value. #ViralSitez Joshua Haggerty Founder/CEO

I work for a marketing agency, and we have several designers on staff. And even though I’m a programmer (and therefore don’t do much design), I agree with Sherry 100%. Designers are still very much needed. At least for people who value design and can afford to hire an expert. If you’re just starting out and have zero budget, then a free or cheap theme will do just fine (at least in the beginning).
I hear your pain. I know creating a website can be daunting, especially to someone who has never ventured into the online world, but let me assure you that it is really quite simple. If you don’t want to head down the road of building your own self hosted WordPress site, then I would suggest signing up to WordPress.com. This is the free version of WordPress where you can get your site up and running in no time and with no costs whatsoever. Sounds like you just need a no frills, no bells, no whistles type of website. If that’s the case then WordPress.com could be the option for you.
Hi Joseph, Thanks for your comment, I think your business idea sounds great and is definitely something you could set up with a website builder! You've got lots of options, depending on your technical ability and budget. Wix has a range of blank templates where you can start from scratch and build your own design, while still keeping the ease of use and customization tools that come with the builder. You can see Wix's blank templates here. For more information on Wix, read our in-depth Wix Review to see if it could be right for you. If you fancy a more hands-on and technical challenge, check out Squarespace's Developer Platform which lets you create a fully custom site - you can either choose a template or build it totally from scratch. You can read our Squarespace Review to find out more on this website builder. The last one I'll recommend having a look at is WordPress - it's known for it's flexibility and if you can code then it really is a blank page for you to make your own! Read our WordPress Review for a better idea of what you can do with this popular platform. I hope that's helped, do let us know how you get on with the pet portrait painting business! Thanks for reading, Lucy

There’s nothing wrong with doing this if you have the time, and there are certainly many tools out there to make the job easier for you. It’s not going to look as professional as it could, simply because you’ll be relying on stock imagery; most of the templates showcased use very attractive stock images and professional branding – so the logo, colours, font etc. all work together. When you insert your own images & content the results can look a little disappointing. Without the guidance of a designer you could create something awful without realizing it. Another factor to watch out for is that you won’t actually own your website; you rely on the company for hosting and most offer you no option to take control of your site further down the line. This makes future development difficult.
Web Design and Social Media Marketing. No-Nonsense Problem Solver. Geek Not Spoken Here. WEB DESIGN: I develop responsive websites with WordPress which is the industry standard for website development. Responsive design makes the most sense when developing your new business website because the design adjusts itself to the size of a user's screen. Your website visitors will be able to view all of your content on a desktop computer, laptop, phone, tablet, or TV. SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING: I am not a consultant who tells you what to do. I am a marketing expert who does the work for you! I am the social media expert at Abuzz Creative and I manage social media channels for businesses of all sizes with creative, engaging posts that entice followers to like and share. I have the expertise to create an online buzz for your business with creative, engaging posts and custom graphics on social media channels like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest. COLLABORATOR: HarborActive computer training initiative for northern Michigan. Teach hands-on social media marketing and online marketing training classes for residents of the communities around Little Traverse Bay. SOCIAL IMPACT: I support the causes that mean the most and I am very involved with my community as a volunteer and committee member to various non profit organizations. Chairman of the board for a local chamber of commerce.
1&1 IONOS isn’t a top all-round website builder, but it covers all the bases for small business. It’s best suited to the professional services industry, which includes lawyers, accountants, or consultants – especially smaller businesses looking to scale. Also, few builders can match the out-of-the-box usability of 1&1 IONOS. For a reliable, organized online presence for your business it’s well worth considering.

Imagine that every time that someone needed a service or product that your company provides – that one of your business cards would magically appear in their hands. Picture it – a potential customer is sitting in their favorite recliner, thinking about the very service or product that your company can provide and instead of seeing any other company – he sees your business card appear in his hands. THAT is what a successful and well-ranked website can do for you.
One of the most common actions people take when exploring a Google listing is to go to the website, but we know that getting a website can still be a challenge for a lot of small business owners around the world: too complex, too expensive, too time consuming. Millions of small businesses (60% of small businesses globally) don’t yet have a website.
Some of the website builders will give you a free custom domain name for the first year if you sign up to their annual plans.  After the first free year, it typically costs around $20 to renew every year. If you prefer to buy your own custom domain name elsewhere as it is usually cheaper, you can purchase your domain name is through GoDaddy, and it will cost you about $12 – $15 per year. From a bigger picture perspective, it’s not a significant difference.
Staying in touch and getting your point across are also must-have skills for a designer. You can’t make a living from building websites without great communication. You’ll need to keep clients up-to-date on the progress of their projects plus pitch ideas and explain your creations. You might even be called on to do some copywriting or editing for sites, especially if you’re running your own one (wo)man shop. So buckle down on your writing and your presentation skills, and you’ll be sure to get your point across in every situation.
Take your story to new heights with a blog. It’s a surefire way to ensure customers are routinely coming back to your site — something that cannot be underestimated. Returning customers may make additional online purchases — of products or services — and it will keep your business top-of-mind for them. For this example, as a florist, a blog would ensure customers remember you when they need their next bouquet or recommend you when a friend asks if you know anyone who does flowers for weddings.

Another thing to think about - 75 years ago, the American population felt that the telephone was an expensive luxury and not crucial to business growth. That sentiment continued for 30 years. As social communication trends changed, and expenses decreased — businesses changed to insure profitability. Use of the Internet will only increase in the next ten years.


If you do one thing on your biz site, you should link to your products and/or services on the homepage. Make it super easy for people to find out what you can do for them —don’t make them hunt for this information, they’ll just navigate off your page instead. For this example, I added three links on the homepage (with eye-catching images) to the three main services offered by this florist — weddings, bouquets, and deliveries. Here’s how I did it:
If you do one thing on your biz site, you should link to your products and/or services on the homepage. Make it super easy for people to find out what you can do for them —don’t make them hunt for this information, they’ll just navigate off your page instead. For this example, I added three links on the homepage (with eye-catching images) to the three main services offered by this florist — weddings, bouquets, and deliveries. Here’s how I did it:
I have an online store on eBay and sell collectible postage stamps from all parts of the world. Their auction site is awesome but their fees are becoming outrageous. When you add that to the fees from PayPal, I’m not sure who I am really working for. First of all, is there an auction house plugin that resembles eBay what you recommend. And secondly, what is the minimum amount of memory my computer should have? I would have about 250 listings at any one time that would last 7-10 days.
Weebly is a more user-friendly host and drag-and-drop website builder that offers more personalized customer support. This can make it a better option for less tech-savvy users who only need a simple website and want to build it on a platform other than WordPress. However, the price tag is $5/month, and this doesn’t include a domain or email account. Get started for free.

From dating to dry cleaning delivery — it seems like everything is done online these days. We always have our phones with us (literally ALWAYS), so to reach the most customers, you absolutely need a website for your business. It’s simply not feasible to not have some connection for your business on the interwebs these days. But what makes a business site successful? And what’s the easiest — and most cost-effective — way to create one if you don’t have any coding experience or a web developer on call?


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The truth is, when you’re assembling Ikea furniture, you’re not a professional furniture builder, and therefore the quality and the output is not going to be as good. And that metaphor applies to website design. Most people are not professional digital marketers or designers or understand user personas, or how to get traffic, or any of those things. And so, not only are you using all of your time to build the website but then you’re not getting as high-quality an output as you would as if you just hired someone who did that full time.

Hi Susan, Yes, in this article we look at WordPress.org instead of WordPress.com, as the self-hosted platform is more popular - and it also avoids confusion between .com and .org! We use WordPress.org in this article to demonstrate the difference in paying for a drag and drop builder, a self-hosted platform, and a custom website. If you'd like to read more about WordPress.com check out our in-depth review here - it covers tools, ease of use, pricing and more. I hope you found this article useful and interesting, Lucy

They don’t need a lot of info or a complicated, multi-page encyclopedia about you. Just a few simple pages are usually more than enough, as long as it has basic information that’s tailored to their needs and very easy to find. And, most importantly, it should be accurate and up-to-date, since out of date info is one of people’s top pet peeves when it comes to using local business websites.
You can integrate your Wix site, for example, for free with Instagram, Facebook and Twitter; you can also add a Facebook like popup button to your site. All of our recommended builders come with varying levels of social media integration so take advantage of the free trials to play around and work out which one caters best for your social media needs.
Next, how hands-on will you be when it comes to maintaining the website? You may just want to let your design firm handle everything – even writing and posting to your blog – so that you can concentrate on other business tasks. On the other hand, you might want to be able to publish a blog post, change an image, or update your product or service offerings yourself without on waiting for someone else to do it. Your decision on this matter will most likely affect the technology used in constructing the website, and so your level of involvement needs to be determined early in the process.
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