When you finally take the plunge to start up your own business, it’s never an easy decision to make. More than likely, you could be giving up a steady job with a regular income, and leaving behind the security of a pension, holiday pay, sickness benefit, maternity rights, etc. and in some cases, even a luxury company car will be a thing of the past, so you can follow your dream of ‘doing it for yourself’ in the big, bad, commercial world. This will only be the first of many tricky decisions you face starting up an ecommerce website. One of the many questions you will be asking yourself is “Why should I have a professional ecommerce website built when I can build one myself for free?” Well here’s why….
How Do I Start My Own Business?
When you first get that spark telling you the time is right to go it alone, you will need to think about so many different steps, your head will truly spin.
You need to think about your business idea, your plan, whether you need premises, will you go it alone or go in to partnership with somebody, who is your target market and what is your branding; and crucially, how you will put your precious finances to best use so that your brilliant business idea doesn’t fail in the first year.
Which, it must be said unfortunately, many do.
This happens because many entrepreneurs cut corners (and try to cut costs!) by not paying enough attention to the things that matter, and in this digital age, having a fully optimised and professionally built website can make or break a brilliant business idea.
At this stage, you have two options….
The ‘Build Your Website Yourself for Free’ Option
If you go online and search for companies that offer ‘free website build’ the list is literally endless, but there are many reasons why this is not a good idea.
Many will claim to be easy to use, (they are not), and many will say it is free; it is not!
There are hidden costs you will not firstly be aware of, from the hosting of the site, (this is the server on the web that will host your website. It must go somewhere, right?), to domain names that are actually recognisable and worth having for your business to have any kind of kudos on the web.
Then there is maintaining the site to ensure it remains fully optimised and is listed at the top of search engines, such as Google, as ecommerce is hard if you’re on page 2 onwards.
It is no good building a website that nobody is going to find, and if your website is not fully optimised this will most certainly be the case. Keywords, alt-tags, meta descriptions, site maps and so on, all take time to figure out, and understanding SEO, (Search Engine Optimisation), is an art form in itself.
And, as Google are notorious for changing their algorithm priorities, (the things that rank a website), you can’t just put the keywords and alt-tags in once and think they will forever do the job.
Your website will require regular analysis to understand why it is placed where it is, and consistently updating with new content to maintain its position at the top of the leader board, all with the motivation of keeping the site traffic busy and enticing new visitors to view your products and services. With many free website building platforms, this functionality is not easily in place, if it’s there at all.
And of course, another priceless part of starting your own business is your time.
Can you really afford to be spending hours and hours building and maintaining a website, when actually your skills lie in the area that you want to set up as a business?
One of the first things you learn as a new business owner is how to outsource – outsource the jobs you can’t do, so that you can focus on the ones you’re great at!
The ‘Engage with a Professional Ecommerce Website Company’ Option
We are not going to tell you any fibs here. Having a professional website built will cost you money.
But here’s the thing, when you build your digital marketing costs in to your business plan, and offset these overheads against
- Your time (See Option 1)
- The returns you will get from the extra website traffic you will receive, (i.e. the number of visitors to your site),
This becomes an investment you would be ill advised to ignore, as ecommerce is important.
The whole digital experience will be more professional, not only for you but for the all-important customer, searching for your products or services.
Not only will they find your website first, (thanks to brilliant SEO) they will find an easy to navigate site, with quality pictures and content, and those clever calls to action that all good websites need.
A professional web builder will ensure you also have an easy-to-use payment system for when goods and services are ordered online and furthermore, will tailor your website so that it is optimised for mobile and voice search, an essential functionality in 2018 and beyond.
Using a Professional Web Builder is a No Brainer, Don’t You Think?
Seriously, when you consider the advantages of what having a professionally built website will bring to your business, and how working with a professional website builder is like having an extension to your business, dedicated to digital marketing, you will wonder how these ‘free’ website companies remain in business.
They remain in business because start-up business people like yourself, do not consider their options well enough, and are not, (unlike yourself), reading this and realising the benefits, indeed necessity, of investing in their website.
And what happens is, these ‘free’ website builders tempt people in with that word ‘free’, but it’s not actually free, it often turns out to be a false economy and much more trouble than it’s worth.
And often, by the time start-up businesses realise this, (if they are lucky and still have a few quid to invest), they end up having to go to a professional website builder to sort out the mess, or…well, the alternative is not having a business at all!
If, like many of our satisfied (and successful) customers will testify, you see the value to investing in a professional ecommerce website, or you just want to explore your options a little further, you can contact us here and a member of our highly skilled and web build professionals are waiting to help you get your dreams off the ground…and take at least one of those difficult decisions away from you.