Yes! You can get a great website by doing it yourself. Here’s what you need to get started:
- A background in web design
- A strong working knowledge of appropriate computer languages
- A keen eye for design
- Aptitude, talent, or qualifying experience in the field
- Truckloads of time and patience
All set? Get to it.
Web Building for the Rest of Us
But what if you don’t have all of those things, or any of them, for that matter? It is still possible to build your own very serviceable website with the help of template-based tools and services. WordPress is the biggest blogging platform in the world. And it can handle a lot more than simple blogs. SquareSpace is a paid service with lots of bells and whistles for people who might be more into ecommerce. And those do not begin to scratch the surface of possibilities.
What you have to understand, though, is that a site builder is not enough to get a website up and running. You still have to pay for a domain and hosting services. Are you going to be dealing with security, or is that for someone else to figure out?
You might prefer an all-in-one solution, like FatCow web hosting, which is one of many full-service hosting services that provide everything needed to get you up and running. While many hosts offer a complete start to finish package, not all hosts are created equally. You will have to carefully weigh the offerings from each provider. Make sure that security, support, and simple site building are a part of any package you consider.
When Moving to the Next Level
No matter how well-intentioned you are, and no matter how well you did getting your site up and running all by yourself, there comes a time when you are going to need to call in a pro. It may not be the first month, or even the first year. But eventually, you are going to hit your stride. At that point, you will want to move up to the next level of your enterprise, with an upgraded website to match.
When You Want to Add Features Your Site Builder Doesn’t Offer
Sooner or later, you are going to see something from another site that you want to make your own. But the simple site builder you are using does not offer that feature. At that point, you have reached the beginning of the end of what you can do by yourself. It is almost certain that the thing you find you can’t do will not be the last.
When Great Design Starts to Matter to You
Going into the project, you knew you weren’t a great designer. You just wanted something serviceable that you could get activated quickly. You got it. But one day (hopefully) you will look at your site and see how it stacks up to other, more professional, more functional, better looking sites. Remember, one of those necessary qualifications is an eye for design. You can’t just fake it. At some point, you are going to have to hire it.
When Your Site Starts Experiencing Technical Difficulties
When people start complaining about poor experiences on your site such as crashes, lost information, and other technical difficulties, who is going to be there to trouble shoot and fix it? You? The one who did not have a strong working knowledge of appropriate computer languages? Right. You can’t even say why the problems are happening. Perhaps you have too many widgets and adds running on a platform that was not built for it. Perhaps it is Java or Flash. When that time comes, it is a good sign that it is time to call in a professional.
You can definitely build an entry-level, serviceable site all by yourself. But the question was can you get a great website by doing it yourself. Unless you are strong on all the bullet points near the top of this post, probably not.