Websites: Hire a professional or D.I.Y? Our client shares her opinion
When we speak to business owners about their views on investing on their business website, the feedback is always mixed between hiring a professional or doing it themselves. Typically, we tend to find that it’s the start-up businesses that take the D.I.Y option.
We caught up with our newest client. We wanted to pick her brains as she’d done exactly that; started on her own and transitioned over to using Think Design 12-months down the line.
Here is what she had to say about her experience:
“When I first engaged Paul’s services, I wasn’t sure what to expect. All I knew is that I’d been in business for almost a year and when I started I was in a much different position that I am now. In the beginning, I was in the standard business owner position of a fantastic business idea but no capital to invest and so everything I built I did myself. I say “did”; I mean blagged. I had a basic concept of how to throw a business website together; I needed something simple to showcase my services just in case a new client wanted an example. I’d always send the URL half wincing knowing how much I hated my site. But, needs must, and I didn’t feel like I had a choice. Almost one year on, I’m at a very different position in my journey. I have staff, the inbound work is consistent, but everything I’ve gathered has been off my own back through networking. So I decided to stop being the tool myself, and start to develop my marketing strategy (ironic for a copywriter, I know) to make my tools start doing the hard work to my advantage.
I took the plunge and decided to get my business website professionally built and designed. Over the years I’ve seen businesses pay upwards for £5,000 for a site that quite frankly – still looked crap – and so I was incredibly cautious about spending cash flow on a business website. I’d met Paul through networking in the past and so had a chat with him and went from there.
The entire process has blown my mind.
First, of course, we needed to establish my brand identity. I know WHY I’m in business and what Coster Content stands for, but I’ve never put any consideration into brand colours, my business logo, or what message I was portraying to potential clients. Paul has made the entire process a breeze. I went from uneasy and unsure to eagerly anticipating my newest design amendments. I got a whole lot more emotionally invested in the process than I expected myself to.
At the end of the day, my business is incredibly important to me, and as quality is an aspect I highly pride my agency on, it’s something I realised I should start leading from the front with and take on board myself. I completely underestimated how much of a role my brand plays on everything else in my strategy. I couldn’t start a marketing campaign without a decent website, and I couldn’t build the site without a solid brand. I wrote ebooks and wanted to get some merchandise, but without the brand, it was pointless.
If I could go back, I would have gone professional a lot sooner. The investment to get a complete overhaul was relatively minimal compared to the difference my new presence made. From experience, I would say I was right not to go with a cheap and cheerful agency (as it was no better than doing it myself) but I think waiting a year to engage with a branding agency to build my business website was a poor error in judgement on my part.”
We’d love to hear from you. What’s your opinion about having a professional brand image and business website designed on your behalf? What did you do when you first started your business?