Many small businesses and freelancers looking to create a website wonder if they can save money by making it themselves instead of hiring a professional web design company. Two popular choices for DIY website building are Wix and Squarespace. They offer user-friendly platforms that promise to make web design accessible to everyone, regardless of their technical skills. But, the big question is, do you really save money by using Wix or Squarespace to design your website? In this blog post, we’ll explore the cost-related factors you should consider when making this decision.
The Initial Costs of Sites Like Wix or Squarespace
One of the first considerations when assessing cost savings is the initial investment. Both Wix and Squarespace offer free plans with limited features, but for a professional-looking website, most users opt for premium plans. Here’s a breakdown:
- Wix: Wix offers a range of pricing plans, starting from as low as $14 per month (billed annually) for their most basic plan. However, to remove Wix-branded ads and use your custom domain, you’ll need to go for a more expensive plan, with the most advanced eCommerce plan costing $39 or more per month (billed annually).
- Squarespace: Squarespace’s pricing plans are similar, with their Personal plan starting at about $12 per month (billed annually), and the Business plan at $18 per month. If you’re running an online store, the Advanced Commerce plan is $40 or more per month.
Consider the Features You Need
To determine cost-effectiveness, you should consider the features you need for your website. Both Wix and Squarespace offer a variety of features, but some may require you to opt for more expensive plans. For instance:
- E-commerce: If you plan to run an online store, you’ll need to subscribe to premium eCommerce plans. Wix and Squarespace both offer these, but the cost can add up significantly.
- Customization: While both platforms allow customization, some advanced customization features may be available only in higher-priced plans.
- Third-party apps and integrations: You might need third-party apps or integrations for specific functionalities, and some of these may come with extra costs.
Consider the Hidden Costs
Hidden costs can often outweigh the savings on your initial plan. Here are some factors to consider:
- Domain: If you want a custom domain (and you should), you’ll need to purchase it separately, which is an additional cost.
- Themes and Templates: Premium themes or templates can enhance your website’s appearance and functionality, but they often come at an extra cost.
- Maintenance: Ongoing maintenance, updates, and support can add to the overall expense, especially if you need to hire professionals for these tasks.
- Scalability: If your website grows and requires more resources, you might need to upgrade your plan, incurring additional costs.
The DIY vs. Professional Web Design Dilemma
While Wix and Squarespace offer ease of use, professional web design can save you money in the long run by maximizing the efficiency and effectiveness of your website. A professional web designer can create a website that’s tailor-made to your needs, ensuring better user experience, SEO optimization, and responsive design, among other benefits.
In conclusion, while Wix and Squarespace offer a cost-effective way to get started with website building, the true savings may depend on your specific requirements and long-term goals. For businesses and individuals looking for a robust online presence, investing in professional web design may lead to better results and greater cost-effectiveness in the long term. Ultimately, the decision should be based on your individual needs and the value you place on a high-quality website.