I may be a web designer/developer who knows her stuff (both tech and pastry-related), but I still make my fair share of mistakes — even on what to save on and what to splurge on.
Example: Up until very recently, I’d been using a cheap hosting provider that has some questionable reviews. Why? Because I hadn’t had any problems with it (ahem, refused to believe my website problems were linked to my host’s bad servers). And I was saving $10+ every month. (Also their sales reps are ridiculously persuasive.)
Why did I finally decide to spend more money on better servers?
Because two websites I’m building got so buggy I couldn’t work on them. Which caused delays, unforeseen and annoying (like burning your omelet when you get distracted by an episode of Scandal — yeah, I know you watch it! — but much, much worse). And that’s BS.
My clients and I deserve better.
Don’t let such an easily preventable catastrophe happen to you (re: both websites and omelets).
Here’s what to save on and what to splurge on while keeping your website in such nice shape that sleazy construction workers will be whistling at it
You can save on
With just one website on your manicured hands (I’ve got several on my manicure-deficient hands), you can get away with an inexpensive hosting plan, meaning around $4/month will cover your needs.
My advice here is thus on which hosting provider you should use: skip the likes of GoDaddy, Bluehost, Dreamhost, and Hostgator to avoid having your site load at a snail’s pace and suffer from much down time, and opt for a provider like Siteground instead. You can still spend just approx $4/month, but you’ll have higher quality servers = higher loading speed + fewer glitches. Soooooo much win.
If you need to switch, hire a web developer or ask the new hosting company to do it for you (most of them do, either on the house or for around $100).
While paid fonts are often higher quality (better balance, alignment, attention to detail, etc.), they can range from $10 to upwards of $800 (yowza, amirite?). And there are some excellent free fonts, such as Open Sans and Georgia.
Just be judicious: if you’re taking the free route especially, examine the fonts you like – the whole alphabet – check for inconsistencies and awkward bits. Ideally, get the input of a skilled graphic designer.
Here’s a video tutorial on where to find rad free images and the best sources for ‘em.
You gotta splurge on
Web design + development + graphic design
(Psst… here’s what all of these terms mean.)
I know I’m biased, but hear me out: you can pay $250 to some dude in India to build your site or design your graphics… but as too many people will tell you, they end up sorely regretting the decision, and here’s why:
- Massive communication gaps due to language (and even cultural) barriers = the client is consistently misunderstood
- The web designer disappears
- The client didn’t get what she asked for, either because the designer didn’t understand or care enough to get it right
- Un-customized, generic, and even sub-par work instead of something beautifully tailored to her needs and her customers’ loves = she’s now embarrassed to show potential clients her website, making it as useless as cow slippers at the beach
The result: you’ll have to tuck your tail between your yoga-toned legs and approach a web designer/developer or graphic designer who charges her worth, so she can fix the mess. And you wasted $250.
In other words, you’ll end up spending way more money and taking much longer to get your stunning and professional website up to attract the kinds of clients you need to have a more successful online business.
I’m not saying you have to spend $10,000 (or even $3k), and, in fact, depending on your needs, you may spend relatively little money. Regardless, know two things:
- High-quality work requires experience, talent, and dedication
- Someone with experience, talent, and dedication deserves to be fairly compensated for the tremendous value her work will provide your business
THIS IS YOUR BUSINESS. YOUR PASSION. Oh, and hey, YOUR LIFE.
I know it’s not always easy to swallow spending hard-earned cash on your biz, but you and your biz deserve better. And it will make you way more money.
Plus, now you know what to save on and what to splurge on so you can make smarter decisions. Boom.
You can’t skimp and expect results that will take your biz 21,348,008 mind-blowing miles ahead of its current level.
It’s like how nourishingly you have to treat your body and mind to get great health and energy. You can’t be stingy and get the best results, and we all deserve the best.
So are you ready for the best? I’ve got 3 spots left to work with me in 2014 – the last chance to have your own personal Website Superhero at my current rates.