Posted by: Coyote Manager
This is the question in the mind of every business owner: what platform should I use for my website? Based on that we have made this post to ease your problem.
Having a website is an important factor for a thriving business! But what’s holding Small and Midsize Businesses (SMBs) back from getting online? From the research conducted at 99designs (through a recent survey of 900+ SMBs), there are a few common challenges Small and Midsize Businesses face in getting a website up and running, including:
- Deciding on a design
- Finding the time to get it built
- Amount of effort required
- Figuring out what features are needed
In addition to the above, one of the first challenges SMBs face in getting started is in figuring out which platform to choose for their website – i.e., WordPress, template, custom HTML/CSS, etc.
Our survey found that of those SMBs that had a website:
- 37% used WordPress
- 23% used templates on a host site (GoDaddy, Wix, Weebly, Squarespace, Jimdo, etc.)
- 15% employed a custom HTML/CSS solution
- 6% went with an eCommerce solution (Magento, Shopify, Big Commerce, etc.)
A large contingent of small businesses who chose WordPress to build their website said that they did so due to ease of use and the platform’s high level of customization. WordPress’ popularity is also in some ways self-perpetuating – since so many people use it, it’s easy to find plugins, templates, answers to questions about how to use the platform, and professionals who know how to work with the platform.
That said, WordPress isn’t the perfect solution for every small business. More than a quarter of WordPress users that we surveyed wished it was easier to make changes to their site, while 25% wanted more features, and 21% wished their sites loaded more quickly.
Fortunately, if the features offered by WordPress don’t suit your business, there are other viable options to choose from.
Choosing a Web Platform for your Small Business
The question is what platform should I use for my website? Here’s what you need to consider when choosing a website platform:
- Your intended use: Will you be selling products, sharing company information, displaying artwork, collecting sales leads, etc.? Choose a platform with features that suit your needs.
- Learning curve: How difficult is it to set up a website using the platform? If your available skill set doesn’t match the platform’s difficulty level, factor in the need to hire help or the time necessary to learn how to work with the platform.
- Pricing: Consider the cost of building the site and your budget, whether you’ll need to hire help to set up and maintain the site, and any fees that might be associated with using the platform.
- Customization options: Do you want to be able to customize the design to reflect your brand? Will you need to add features via plugin programs? If so, look for platforms that fully support customization.
- Coding/development help: Setting up a website on some platforms requires moderate to advanced technical skills.
- Edit/update ease: Can you easily update information on the site, or will you need help? WordPress and template sites are easy to modify, but a custom website may be more challenging.
- Analytics: Does the platform provide you with data on who is visiting your site, how often, and when? Analytics information can help you understand your market more accurately.
WordPress – This platform is best used for blogs, company info, portfolios, and lead collections. There is a learning curve that may require some coding skills to make customization. There is are Free and Paid options available. WordPress is a great platform with lots of versatility and plug-ins.
“Template” – Websites (GoDaddy, Squarespace, or Weebly) – This platform is great for getting information out there whether it’s a company profile or portfolio you’d like to share. It is very easy to use and low cost. You will be limited to customization since these platforms are made to be user-friendly and take out some of the complications. There is no coding required and content is easy to update.
Ecommerce Solutions (Magento, Shopify, BigCommerce) – E-commerce platforms are a great way to get your online business up and running. However, there are some things to consider. With these platforms available, there is a moderate learning curve. Pricing is medium to high which will vary depending on the feature set and sales volume the platform offers. These platforms are very customizable and don’t necessarily require coding. It may be helpful during setup and if needed troubleshooting performance issues. These platforms generally make it easy to add and edit products as well.
Customized Websites – Having a custom website built gives you the opportunity to have free range functionality for what your website needs maybe. However, if you are doing this independently, there is a complex learning curve that will take place. Having a customized website built from scratch can be very costly if you are not doing it yourself. You can hire a web development agency or balance custom coding with a template to help cut costs. Customized websites have a free-range for customization however this is dependent on the coding being done.
Making a Decision
Start with what your company needs – whether it be a simple website to communicate information about what you do, or something far more complex, like a full e-commerce solution. Think about the best option for your budget, and give some thought to what features and functionality you might need in the future to help ensure your business’s long-term success. If you know you’ll want to sell products online, for example, you may opt to start with a WordPress site, knowing you can add the e-commerce functionality later.
One final consideration: Nearly half (46%) of web users say a website’s design is their number one criterion for determining the credibility of a company – make sure your company’s design stands out among the rest.
Final Note –
Hope we solved your problem by giving you the solution to the question: what platform should I use for my website? If still, you have queries, feel free to reach out through the comment box