To Rent or Not to Rent My Website: eCreations Helps Answer This Question

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eCreations shares five tips when looking to design your own business website using a “website as a service” provider.

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Much like your computer software needs updating, websites also need to be updated as necessary to stay on top of design trends, new technology innovations, search engine requirements and browser standards.

To rent or not to rent my website is just one of the many questions business owners should be asking themselves when deciding how to update or create a new website. As 2015 comes to a close and businesses are preparing for the new year, Phoenix web design firm eCreations provides business owners a few things to consider when designing a website using a "website as a service" provider.

Thanks to the “cloud”, the software as a service (SaaS) industry has exploded over the last five years, and the web design industry has closely followed suit with their “website as a service” model. Rather than being a product delivered to a client and deployed on the host of their choosing, many companies now offer all-in-one, off-the-shelf website design packages, but this one-size-fits-all approach to websites may not be the right for all businesses. The design-your-own-website concept was initially created to give business owners a seemingly hassle-free way to design and keep their websites up-to-date for a monthly fee.

This means instead of making a larger initial investment to establish a domain name, secure hosting and pay a designer/developer to create your site, you pay a monthly fee to a company for a template that you can drag and drop to design your site and you are good to go. Or so you thought…

“Business owners need to be able to create a website with little to no hassle at a price that is fair and reasonable,” said Steve Tamulewicz, owner of Phoenix-based web design and services company, eCreations. “However, too many people don’t realize what they might not be getting, when going with a for free or low cost 'website as a service' company. From what our clients have shared with us, they’ve had more headaches and nightmares than any positive experiences with these types of sites.”

Here are five tips from eCreations when looking to design your own business website using a “website as a service” provider:

#1 - Simple-To-Use Site Builders May Seem Easy On The Surface.
Building your website using a site builder may look easy in the snappy marketing video, but designing a website requires more than creating visually pleasing pages. You need to consider your demographic, usability, search engine friendliness and content. While designing may be a little easier with a site builder, content is one of the most important aspects of your site. You will still need to invest a fair amount of time and energy creating product descriptions, sales pitches, company information and a strong call to action. The site builder will not write it and organize it for you.

#2 - Pre-built Templates Look Cool, But Can You Easily Make Changes?
Many of the website as a service companies, like Wix and Go Daddy offer a variety of templates, but be careful which one you choose. One of the drawbacks is that once you have picked a template, you can’t make a switch. With Go Daddy, you lose all of the content you may have plugged into the template. In addition, drag and drop is not that simple. Many people have expressed frustration with SquareSpace’s drag-and-drop feature. They’ve had issues re-arranging content and had to try multiple times to add new blocks.

#3 - Low Cost Or Free Usually Means Visible Ads Will Appear On Your Page.
With Wix’s free website builder, advertisements will appear on your website after you publish. Most free and low cost website builders have their own version of advertising credits. Weebly’s free website builder has a very small advertisement in comparison to others, but even so, it doesn’t present the most professional image of your business. Jimdo recently listened to their users complaints and reduced the size of their advertisements, but their small ads still appear in the footer of your page. The only way to avoid this is to upgrade to their annual packages.

#4 - Can You Move Your Site To A Different Host? Do You Actually Own Your Site?
This is also referred to as “portability”. This is probably one of the biggest downfalls of using a site builder or website as a service company. When you use their services, you don’t own the design and because of that you are locked into their particular web host. The template you used to create your site and the graphics are copyrighted and licensed for use only on their host or platform. Your website is held hostage and the files cannot be transferred to a new host. Business owners should never allow your site to be locked into any web host and be sure you are the true owner of your website’s content, images and design. Most people may not even realize the website they are creating using one of the popular website builder tools for free, like Wix or SquareSpace, is not truly theirs. In fact, many are surprised to find out they are only renting the domain, content, design and platform.

#5 - Buying Your Site Doesn’t Have To Be Expensive Nor Does It Need To Be A Hassle.
Creating a website that you own doesn’t have to be a long and drawn out process, and with some good design firms, businesses can even make affordable monthly payments. Many web design companies realize business owners need to manage both their time and their cash flow – as many are business owners themselves. In a nutshell, do a little research and know what you’re getting by understanding the pros and cons of every option.

“Regardless of what platform, tool or company you choose, make sure you have the ability to change with the times,” explains Tamulewicz. “Much like your computer software needs updating, websites also need to be updated as necessary to stay on top of design trends, new technology innovations, search engine requirements and browser standards. We make sure our clients are on the leading edge of technology with a stable, expandable and reliable website.”

The first step for any business looking to design a new website is finding a reputable company who will listen to your needs and help you create a website that best fits your business goals.

“eCreations offers a wide variety of web design and development solutions to fit the budget and requirements for businesses of every type and size,” explains Tamulewicz. “No matter how much you invest in your website, our first step is to get to know your business and build a relationship with you. Service is the foundation of our business—we are committed to providing impeccable service. I don’t know of any online web-builder site that can say that.”

Watch for more tips, news and blog posts from eCreations to learn more about website design, hosting, and other Internet marketing trends to make your business more competitive by following eCreations on Facebook Twitter and LinkedIn, as well as the eCreations blog.

About eCreations:
eCreations is Arizona’s premier web services firm offering clients results-driven Internet marketing strategies. The Internet industry, which includes website design, search engine optimization, hosting and other related services isn’t just a job for us – it’s a passion. This passion will always be anchored by ethics, experience, and education. We promise what we can deliver and always strive to deliver more than what is expected. Since 1997, we’ve cultivated our core-competence, providing premium web services to companies small and large. Our Certified Web Professionals continue learning about the latest technologies. This ensures our clients receive quality, results-driven strategies. For more information, please visit our website at https://www.ecreations.net or call us at toll free 1-877-664-6306.

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