By: Sean Wheller
Many companies would love to reduced costs for their web design, web development, web maintenance and SEO.
Here is a list of things you can do to reduce these costs without compromising on vendor quality:
- Have a clear brief of what you want for your website.
To clarify this further, you need to make an outline of exactly what you want in your website (pages, functions, forms, anything you can think of). Otherwise you will end up with things you thought you wanted, that the developer will include then you want removed. This will cost you to build and sometimes will cost you to remove, because the integrity of the site has to remain both activities will cost in time hence you will be charged for these. In addition to this, the outline will guide you through what is most important to what is least important, this will help with budget and you don't have to build everything all at once.
- Write your own text
You may not be able to SEO your own text (depending on your current SEO knowledge), but if you ask a web design company with copywriting services to do the text for you it will cost you more. Truth be told, for a good copywriting job the person doing your copywriting will have to do research, not only write. This takes time and for a good writing job you will pay quite a bit.
If the website is extensive the price can be high. When I mean high, this can run into thousands of dollar. Writing copy for a website is not only words on a page, it requires research of competitors, industry, your products and company to write compelling copy, not just some sentences put together. It stands to reason that if you provide the text it will be far cheaper than adding writing services to the price tag.
- Get a website based on a content management system like Joomla
Get a content management system based website like “joomla”. This will enable you to load your own content, format your own content, add sections, delete content and manage your website while helping with content loading from the very beginning of the development. This will further reduce cost of development and also maintenance. In the future you won't be dependent on the web design and development company to make the updates for you. With a content management system you have full control of the entire website content.
It stands to reason that hard coded websites (those sites that you need a programmer to keep changing stuff), are not only out of fashion but very expensive in the long run. Eventually, one would have to “rip and replace” with a content management system or live with the costs. The only time when such sites are justified is when a company wants to develop their own software type of back end. Though this is done, it is not common nor cost effective in the small to medium size business arena.
- Perform some SEO tasks yourself
Get SEO consultation and audit, then get training and try to do as much SEO tasks as you can. Some SEO tasks such as related to the architecture of the site might be too much for a-none technical person. That said “off site SEO” and some “on site SEO” if directed by consultations from an expert can be done in house. You can reduce costs by doing some of the SEO tasks yourself.
If you have the money, it make sense to outsource, experts get it done faster and it saves you time to do what you need to grow your business, but if you don't have the budget a consultation and site audit with recommendation on what to do will take you further than just doing nothing and losing out of organic traffic, potential customers and leads.
These are just some main things to consider if you want to reduce costs of development and maintenance of your own website. That said make sure you don't try to reduce costs by choosing the cheapest vendor. Remember you get what you pay for. Rather reduce costs by doing some tasks yourself, reduce the amount of functionality you want with your first version of the site, but try never to compromise on quality it will cost you in the long run, sometimes as much as rebuilding your website all together.
Experts respect their work and know the value of their work this also means they charge for it accordingly, rather get a good service and build slowly than have to redo later.
If you have your entire brief and outline you discuss with your service provider, you can discuss with them steps to build your website at a rate that you can afford. A good website design and development company will consult you along the way and help you get there step by step according to your budget.
Author Resource:-> Sean Wheller is the founder of www.TheWebDesignCompany.co.za, a web design and development company specializing in developing search friendly websites with focus on e-commerce websites and online shops.
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