I’ve just been doing some work for a client who wanted a little web consultancy to help tidy up their existing website, which is hosted on one of the site builder applications that are advertised heavily in magazines and on some TV channels. These are provided by website hosts and try to provide a simple, templated solution for small businesses to create their own website at a low monthly cost – “no web developer required”.
Now, I’m all up for using technology that gives you the most bang for you buck, and I understand that many small businesses can’t afford a costly full custom web design – but please, PLEASE, PLEASE don’t go for one of these site builders!
Using the package we found:
- Practically no attention to any Search Engine Optimisation fields or settings we’d want – the site will struggle to rank well
- It was almost impossible to do things consistently across pages – so the site looks, well, inconsistent
- Poor/very limited design control – the site looks cheap
- An editor that had a mind of its own – slow to add content
- A very slow process to go through to add and edit content – a barrier to building content, a key component of SEO
For not a lot more money you can get a cheap WordPress website put together for you using an off the shelf design tweaked to your brand. That will give you an SEO friendly website that can grow with you as your business grows. Bottom line – I’d highly recommend that you don’t use website builders – because your business is worth more than that! Or maybe that’s just because I’m a professional web developer who cares about Search Engine Optimisation?