Web developers and designers have worked years to hone their coding skills and are constantly attending training sessions, self-teaching and even out-dated techniques to keep up with industry updates.

Once upon a time, studying code or hiring a professional to work on your project was the only way to obtain a competitive business website. But with DIY site builders entering the marketing and admittedly growing in popularity, consumers are starting to believe that what was once out of their reach is now up for grabs for little money and effort.

Then there are agencies, like us, that tell you otherwise – “a template will always look like a template”, “be aware of the restrictions” and “technical aspects are always hidden, never marketed”.

And in short, we are right… But you won’t truly know that until we explain why. So without further adieu, here are our top 5 reasons for choosing a web designer over a DIY site builder:

  1. Site builders spread the cost, but double it in order to do so

Website builders tend to tie you in to a monthly subscription, which is great for those looking to spread the cost. However, you’re ultimately paying a premium to do so. Conversely, a web designer will work to your budget and brief and ask you to pay a one-time fee. The only on-going cost is hosting, which a web designer usually ties into your initial payment and is able to suggest the most lucrative yet effective option.

  1. Online support services and user forums are not the same as speaking to a human

If you’re computer savvy, user forums can be incredibly helpful – that we do not discount. But online support services over a professional web designer at your beck and call? Well, there’s really no comparison to be done. Having the reassurance, experience and knowledge of a web designer to-hand is invaluable when your website is an integral aspect of your business.

  1. Previewing a template doesn’t ensure your outcome

It’s easy to fall in love with a template, buy it and then realise none of your content fits or works within it. In fact, there are endless things that can go wrong when shopping for a template – from hidden costs to unlock premium features to total incompatibility. Hiring a web developer gives you control over the design, functionality and technicalities of your website, not to mention the bonus of a personalised CMS.

  1. Scalability and extendibility isn’t reassured with site builders

If the purpose of your website is to extend your reach and increase sales, then it’s likely you also have plans to scale-up in the future. If you’re a small business looking to grow, a template may be tempting but it’s certainly not the way to go in terms flexibility, bandwidth, branding and so on. A (good) web designer is able to foresee features you may need in the future and therefore is able to develop something that isn’t conventional but custom-built.

  1. Customisation doesn’t equate to bespoke

To customise is to modify something to best to suit a particular brand, purpose or individual. To produce something bespoke is to make something to order, from scratch. Website builders will give you various customisation options within templates, whereas a web designer will give you free creative reign and experienced-backed ideas and input where necessary/when requested. Big difference.