The 3 different primary approaches to building a website- website builders, template driven, or custom.

There are many different approaches to the development of websites. Literally dozens of organizations offer different versions of web builders, essentially a do it yourself initiative. Then there are template driven sites, usually but not always constructed in Wordpress. And then of course there are custom built websites, which rely fully on, and reflect, the skill of the development/design team.

As a business owner the question becomes which path to follow- which option is best for you? Without doubt the budgets for these options differ vastly. Site builder type sites range from free to ~ $20/month, quite negligible. Depending on choice of developer and of course scope of work, a wordpress template based website (for a small business) may cost in the $2k-$10k range. These figures will inflate with added functionalities programmed in, or of course for larger organizations.

Custom built sites range from $5k or so into the millions of dollars.

Obviously some huge price variance there- so what are the distinguishing factors driving such differentials? Power, flexibility, credibility, user favorability are just some of the features inherent in a successful website. So why use the cheapest option or not? When using a web builder such as your website will always be hosted on a platform owned by the web builder. You will have little control over the server your site is hosted on. There for sure are nifty tools available that will enable a reasonably tech savvy person to build a working website, and to do so quickly.

Options are limited though- a small business with a small budget?- this is a good option for you.

Perhaps your outfit is in need of a more professionally designed website. If you’re a small business a template based web presence may be a good option. A huge number of small businesses need what’s known as a ‘portfolio website’. This consists of, for example, a home page, a services page, contact page, and a blog/news section. An even semi competent designer can create an acceptable looking website fully derived from a pre-made template. (usually but not always Wordpress)

The end result, when engineered professionally, should yield a highly credible web presence that instills confidence in site visitors.

Lastly there is the fully customized. ‘designed from scratch’ website. Development is very involved- from wireframing to photoshop optimizing to full functionality. A custom built site offers much greater layers of flexibility (think ecommerce, subscription based sites and the like.) The custom approach does require the biggest investment in terms of time and money. However a well coded custom built website represents the best in class online.

Whichever route you take we always recommend doing your research first, its best to get it right the first time.

At Big Orange Planet we have developed our own content management system, Stempora. This we use on bigger projects with more complex web development demands. For example: AimLock &   ORIBI

We also build custom WordPress sites for smaller businesses. For example Revolution Electric & Black Mountain Motorworks