It’s terribly confusing for a small business owner to choose which path to go down to set up a new website.
You are told to D.I.Y. You are present with a number of options for $500 to thousands of dollars for what seems on the surface, to be the same end result.
Not the case.
Spending more will not necessarily get you a better end result. It might increase the probably of that, but it certainly doesn’t guarantee it.
If you are doing it yourself, using Wix, Squarespace, Shopify or some other simple builder you’ll get out what you out into it.
By far the cheapest way to do it, you might only end up spending $10-$20 a month to cover everything.
The added benefit of D.I.Y is that when you need something changed you know how to do it immediately.
The downside of this approach is, there are heaps of nuances in content, user experience and tracking that you might miss, which you’ll probably get access to if you work with an experienced developer.
If you’re looking at quotes in the range of $500-$1200 you can probably expect a churn and burn process. Your sit will be pumped out using a template and you’ll be ‘trained to add all the content.
Web development is an art. It takes years to learn. You can’t be trained effectively to do anything but put content in pre-defined spots.
If you are happy to look like your website has rolled out the cookie cutter line, this may work for you. Expect the process to be painful, with very little support. This is level you’re paying for.
Once you start hitting sites North of 2k, you’re in anything can happen territory.
Your best bet is to get a referral from someone you trust, who went through the experience and got a great result.
I repeat. Went through the experience AND got a great result.
Not a referral to my Mum’s brother’s daughter’s boyfriend who once built a website. This is destined for disappointment.
Your second best shot is to find someone that has both heaps of good reviews and a portfolio of sites you can see are still live and working. Note: lots of web developer portfolios include sites that they built ‘once upon a time. You want recency.
So what do you choose for your small tourism business?
If you like learning and have some time, I’d say do it yourself. There is tons of learning you’ll achieve through the process and it is handy knowledge to have even if in the future you’re getting someone else to build your next one.
If you don’t have the time, and have a budget above 2k, do your due diligence to short-list service providers. At the 2k end, you’re not going to have many options. Close to 5k+, you should have quite a lot.