There are a lot of options out there if you’re interested in building a website. Right now, there are some automated online website builders out there which purport to allow you to design and host your own website at a very low price – or even for free. These deals, however, are often not all that they are stacked up to be. Let’s take a look:

The free providers usually offer a very limited selection of designs for you to pick from. Often, these designs are the very same designs used by thousands of other websites, making your own site virtually indistinguishable from these others. These providers also often have limits on the size of your website and the bandwidth that it uses. They may also claim some degree of ownership of your content and place filters on what you can and cannot post to your own website. Some free page builders will automatically include their own ads on your site, whether you want them or not.

There are some paid online site building services that are slightly more advanced than the free sites, but which are still really only a minimal step up in terms of feature set. These sites might allow some small amount of customization to your pages, but generally still require that you use their templates and overall “look and feel.” It can be difficult, again, to differentiate your site from the ocean of other websites out on the internet when your site is, at heart, using a design shared by so many others out there.

In contrast, a professional custom website designer will build a site for you from scratch that is custom-tailored to your needs. Your site will look unique and distinctive, which can be important to generate recognition, repeat visits, and business. These designers usually have years of training in layout, font and color selection, and coding which enables them to build sites that both load quickly and look great. If you are trying to put together a professional-looking page, there is really no alternative: a professional website design service is the only way to go.

Co-founder of SMB ENGINE and passionate about growing Small Businesses. Previously aConsultant For Apple, Inc., Cisco Systems as a Small Business Consultant. Through his experience and strategies Chris has been able to facilitate the growth of thousands of small businesses.

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