Web Design: Hire An Agency Or Do It Yourself?

posted by Digital Group on 10th January 2019

When it comes to building a new website for your business, you have two main choices. Either you hire someone else to do it for you, or you build it yourself. The advent of online site builders, such as Godaddy, have helped make self-built websites a reality. However, that doesn’t mean it’s necessarily the smartest move. Let’s take a deeper look at your options …

Going with a freelancer/agency

Pros:

  • As long as you choose a quality designer, you should get the site built to a high standard
  • You can ask them to build in features you would be unable to do yourself
  • You can get it done quite cheap if you find a new freelancer looking to build up their portfolio
  • There are thousands of agencies and freelancers to choose from

Cons:

  • This will usually work out far more expensive than building it yourself
  • You may be required to pay a large sum upfront in order to start the build
  • A cheaper freelancer might “learn on the job”, so be very slow with your build
  • The rounds of revisions necessary might work out very frustrating and costly

Building it yourself

Pros:

  • You are in charge of how quickly you get the site built and ready
  • You have complete freedom over when the site is updated and what design tweaks are made
  • Do it yourself site builders are very cheap to use
  • You pay a lower amount each month, rather than paying a large sum up front
  • You can always use this as a means to test the concept before having an expensive, more professional site built

Cons: 

  • You will be limited in how much you can customise your site, as you can merely drag and drop in pre-built elements
  • It might take you a long time to get good at using the software
  • If you have little design skill, then you might be disappointed with the finished design
  • Unless you maintain monthly payments, you won’t actually own the site you build
  • Additional features, such as a shopping cart, will likely cost a lot more than the base monthly rate
  • You are stuck using their hosting plans
  • If you use a template, then your site might simply look very similar to thousands of others online

Rounding off

Ultimately, the choice is completely your own. There’s no clear winner as it all depends on the exact functionality you require, as well as your budget. Whichever option you choose to go for, be sure to do a thorough cost analysis beforehand. For example, an agency might cost far more upfront, but then require you only to pay much lower hosting charges each month. 

Whereas if you built it yourself, you’ll need to pay larger ongoing amounts in order to keep your site live. Here’s a list of the sorts of costs you will need to consider depending on which choice you go for:

An agency/freelancer

  • Consultation fees
  • Building the site
  • Designing complex bespoke features
  • Any future revisions you need made
  • Monthly hosting (Usually £5-£10 minimum)

Do-it-yourself

  • Monthly base rate for site builder
  • One-of-fee if you buy a template
  • Monthly hosting (Usually £5-£10 minimum)
  • The cost of your time

You might well find that, despite an agency being far more expensive upfront, they actually work out cheaper after 3 or 4 years. So, which one do you think suits you best?