In my 10+ years collaborating on website projects on various platforms, I have encountered a common problem – fixing other web designer’s mistakes. Unfortunately, many business owners find themselves leaning more towards budget-friendly options over quality customized business solutions, finding out the hard way that cheap web design is often NOT good web design.

Cheap web design vs. good web design

Now, what does it mean to slap the “cheap” label on a web design project? Think of it more applying to the quality of the work and the knowledge of your web design and development team. Affordable website design doesn’t automatically identify as bad design in itself, but going too cheap will cost you later down the line. Hiring a professional web design and development team with the bells and whistles can come at a price. Many small business owners may feel pressured to compromise for short-term value by contracting budget-friendly designers to knock out a website without fully understanding what goes into the process to make your website work for the long haul. As a result, the market for professional website design has become oversaturated by the “one-man shop” type of company. What’s worse, taking that route causes you to miss key elements needed to make your site successful for your business. So how can you prevent such a mishap? For starters, let’s unveil some of the most common web design fails you could face.

No search engine optimization.

The biggest problem you can face is choosing a web designer who does not understand the basics of proper on-site SEO. What this means is you’ve been left high and dry with a website that search engines do not see. Kind of defeats the point, right? If your designer doesn’t practice basic optimization techniques, you are due for disappointing traffic results.

Bad content with no target audience.

Once you have successfully landed a visitor to your homepage, are they likely to be interested in what your pages have to say? Your design team should do the research to make sure your target audience is clearly defined. Content matters, and having a thoughtful messaging strategy is crucial to give users the ability to find what they need quickly and easily. Otherwise, you’ll catch yourself with a bounce-rate that is less than ideal.

It’s downright ugly.

Too often we find ourselves fixing websites for being really, really ridiculously bad-looking. Additionally, mobile responsive sites for smartphones and tablets are an industry standard at this point. Don’t skip the wireframing process!

Your website isn’t representing your brand.

A good design agency will understand your cohesive brand strategy and brand identity. The text, color scheme, and formatting should create uniformity throughout your site. Often we are asked to correct websites that look like a typographic bomb went off. Plus, it hurts our eyes.

No long-term support.

Another typical problem is the “hit and run” scenario. Your designer throws a cheap template site together and disappears once the job is over. And what’s worse – you weren’t properly trained on how to use and navigate it. Now you’re vulnerable to hacking and security risks that will cost you more money later down the line because you don’t know how to update your site. It’s not enough to just have a visually appealing website. You need to have it maintained. Regular backups and updates are an absolute necessity.

The cheapest route is not always the best when it comes to your website. Your business is an investment, and your site is a representation of that business. Don’t be too quick to sell yourself short with the cheaper designer based on price alone because, in this instance, less is not more.

Don’t be a victim of cheap website design gone wrong.

And if you happen to find yourself in such a predicament, I’d love to help. My creative team can provide you with a website with the functionality and dependability needed to make you stand out from your competitors. And don’t worry, we promise not to judge.