Building a website for your business can be one of the best ways to express yourself and provide an informative destination for potential customers to learn about you, your products, and your services.
Learning to build a website can be daunting and it can require a lot of time to get to a point where you are knowledgeable enough and comfortable enough, to jump in and start coding. Still, the great thing about technology is that it’s always changing and now you have options that can make the web development process faster and easier than it’s ever been before.
Many new website enthusiasts turn to an online website builder such as Wix or Squarespace. With selling points such as the ease of use, built-in drag–and–drop nature, and the potential of zero-code development, these tools can be attractive options but before you jump in be warned, these options may be hiding issues that most people would not consider at first glance.
The Disadvantages of Online Website Builders
If it’s easier and faster to build a site without the need for code why wouldn’t you want to use them for your website development? Because easier isn’t always better.
Limitations are one not-so-obvious issue that you may encounter in the world of subscription website builder services. This can include the inability to swap out a template once you have built your site. If you decide you want to change the entire look of your site or change your mind down the road, you will most likely have to rebuild the entire site. WordPress builds, on the other hand, offer a bit more flexibility to make global site changes with the installation of a new theme or template.
Custom design additions (Widgets, Plugins, etc.) to your site can also be limited with drag-and-drop site builders. This includes adding custom HTML, JS, or PHP files which could extend the functionality of a site. Certain custom-made bells and whistles will not be easy to integrate if allowed at all and the extras provided by these services will come with additional charges which can make this option more expensive than you once thought.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is an important part of any website. This is how your website is found on Search Engines like Google and Bing. Proper SEO can separate you from your competition and unfortunately, this can be a pain to fully take advantage of and implement with some of the website builders.
One of the biggest issues with these online website builders is that you don’t have the ability to export your newly built website files and use them on another host. This means once you’ve spent the time to plan out and build your site, you have to use the online website builder’s hosting. You may have the option to move a site from one account to another but once built, you are handcuffed to their hosting and if you close your account, you may very well lose your site altogether.
These services may be a good option for a business just getting their feet wet and needing to build an intro website in a short amount of time but they’re not as strong of an option for midsize to larger-scale websites that need full control of site design, hosting, and customization.
Whenever you decide to start the process of building your website it is always a good idea to look at and examine all options as well as the pros and cons. Cost is very important but shouldn’t be the only part of the website development process, as this can cloud judgment and place you in a situation that may cost you more in the long run and even cost you your website.