As an online business, you need to be in demand with your customers.
It does not matter if you are an online business, or you are just planning to launch a startup.
Also, gone are the days where you need to invest a lot in a custom-made design for your site.
More than ever, there is a wide range of ready-made designs.
Not to mention that there are website builders that provide a guide on how to make a website without writing a single line of code.
In this post, we will walk you through with the eight things that you need to consider when selecting a website builder:
1. Know your purpose
Before you start, you need to know what’s the primary purpose of your site.
Are you using it as a landing page for more users to look you up online, or do you want to turn it into a sales platform?
It’s because there’s a vast difference between a basic site from a large e-commerce site. Various site builders are better suited for different purposes as well.
You need to know first how much are you willing to invest for a website builder.
That’s why you need to consider the costs involved.
But also keep in mind that cheap offers don’t come with outstanding service.
Account for things like hosting and domain registration.
You also need to remember that you have to invest in things like copy and images for your site as well.
Many website builders offer free plans but charge anywhere between $5-$20 monthly for programs that provide features most sites or businesses will likely need.
If you have a limited budget, you can save money by looking for bundle plans that are tailored for everything you need.
3. Ease of use
If you’re one of the types that don’t have much knowledge when it comes to making a website, you must utilise a website builder that’s highly intuitive and user-friendly.
If the builder that you have picked is easy to use, then you won’t have a hard time turning your site into the way that you want it to be.
Every website builder is different, especially when it comes to the various features that it offers.
Some sites have simple, excellent-looking templates but have minimal features.
For instance, a limited site builder would offer its users the most basic social media buttons.
Meanwhile, a more extensive website builder would be offering a full plugin shop to add pop-ups, maps, subscriptions boxes, forms, and so much more.
In other cases, you can even place your own code if you need something specific.
Hence, it is crucial to consider the various features that you need in the short term and long term to avoid any issues in the future.
5. E-commerce capabilities
Without a doubt, online shopping is on the rise, which means that an e-commerce design is an important feature to search for in a website builder.
Even if you are not selling any kind of product online at the moment, you have to look for a service that can scale your business in the long run.
This is true, especially if you want to sell something online.
Some platforms limit the number of items that you can sell.
Therefore, if it is a crucial element in your business, this is a feature that you need to take into consideration.
6. Mobile responsiveness
Creating a website that isn’t only seen on laptops and desktops, but also on smartphones and other mobile devices is a great idea.
That’s why you must pick a website builder that provides mobile-friendly templates and functionalities to serve your mobile site visitors better.
When you create your site in a website builder, you usually have to purchase a package that includes hosting and domain.
Therefore, your entire site and domain will be hosted on the server of your website builder.
If something happens to the server or your website builder, your site could disappear, and there will be no means for you to restore it.
Although this possibility is rare, it doesn’t mean that it’s impossible.
That’s why you have to take precautions.
First, you need to know how long has the site builder been in the market.
If it’s less than a year ago, chances are, they’re too young.
Meanwhile, if a website builder been around in the industry for over a decade, then it’s highly likely that they’re more reliable.
Another thing that you need to check is their reputation on social media and the internet.
All you need to do is to type the website builder’s name on Google, and you’ll see what other people are saying about them.
You can also look at the review section on their Facebook page.
Not every website builder will offer the same level of customer support.
Some will offer users only email support. Meaning, you have to fill in a form and wait for their response via email.
Others will have 24/7 chat and phone support, which is great if you encounter some issues along the way.
You’d be surprised that some sites offer no support whatsoever. Just forums or an online knowledge base to turn to.
This could likely mean that you have to wait for a long time for your issues or problems to be resolved.
So, if you’re looking for quick answers and a steady support team who will help you solve problems when they arise, you have to consider this when picking a website builder.
9. Integration Options
If you are aiming for a site that has exceptional functionality, it is essential to look for a website builder that allows you to integrate with virtually every third-party service providers.
But if you are a beginner, keep in mind that your website does not have to be fancy.
You can start with something simple, as long as it is functional and gets the job done.
On the other hand, complicated platforms may require a variety of integration options.
For instance, supporting platforms for social promotion.
Thus, if you’re planning to utilise multiple services to help in your site’s overall design and performance, ensure that you pick the right platform.
This is mostly true for web design professionals who want to launch professional websites that have excellent performance.
10. Terms and Payments
Before you search for the best site templates, you also need to check the various payment methods first.
Does the site builder of your choice support payment methods that are popular in your area?
How often will you be charged? Do you need to pay monthly or will it only be a one-time payment?
Another thing that you need to consider is their refund policy.
If a particular website builder does not give you any options for a refund in case you do not get satisfactory results with their services, then you might start looking for other alternatives.
Does the particular website builder offer a money-back guarantee? Then, you might have to check the terms and conditions first before you apply for a refund.
PRO TIP: Check whether your website builder comes with a free trial or demo of your desired payment gateway.
Doing so allows you to try out whether it is something you can integrate on your website on your own before committing to a service provider.
Most of the popular site builders will let you sign up for free trials for a limited period, as well as feature-limited packages to let you get a feel of what its added features and functionalities can do for your business.
That way, you can test how many website builders are performing well before you can ultimately make a final decision.
11. Moving your website
This option is not available on all site builders. However, this is one factor you should consider.
As your business grows, there is a possibility that you might need to move your website to another website builder. Hence, you should know how to do it.
Others will provide support in moving your site, while some will require the skills of a web developer.
Other website builders don’t provide you with that option at all.
Therefore, moving your site means that you have to start from scratch.
This will require a lot of unnecessary work on your part, and something that you can likely avoid in the future if you pick the right website builder.
In a highly digital world, establishing a robust online presence is essential for any business.
It is because you will get more visitors, which could gradually turn into paying, loyal customers.
Having a highly responsive and beautiful site is also necessary, and building it requires the right tools.
Hopefully, the tips that we have mentioned in this article will help you pick the right website builder that will provide you with the right toolset and security needed when creating a business website.
Originally published at https://inkbotdesign.com on March 14, 2020.