In the age of WordPress and its huge theme libraries sometimes there is a lack of emphasis on the importance of custom web design. It can seem like an easy and cheaper option to buy in a template and many companies make the decision to go with this option for their online presence thinking it is more cost-effective than creating their own custom design. Often they are wrong.
Nowadays many web designers willingly opt for the lazy option of picking up someone else’s work and modifying it slightly to meet their needs. This often requires much less skill in coding and design which surely makes our jobs as web designers far less enjoyable?
In some instances using ready-made templates is the right decision however for the majority of companies the benefits of creating a custom made website far outweigh those the seemingly cheaper option can bring.
Template designs can actually be very limited because, despite vast choice available, finding one that actually fits with what you need in terms of content, navigation and social media can be tricky to find. More often than not this leads to a design being picked that is close to what is required but means unnecessary content is produced to fill gaps or images/logos being shoe horned in to fit the design.
Template design can also lead to a less professional looking website as it can produce an inconsistent overall look and feel. Though customising the colours and background of the website can be relatively easy often when it comes to adding in the company’s own imagery and logo it can all become disjointed. This may lead to a mismatch of styles, those inherent to the template and those added in by the designer, which will impact massively on the design and give it a less professional feel which can impact the user’s opinion of the company or brand.
Custom design will better suit the needs of business as all user journeys can be properly mapped out for your company making a massive difference to the user experience which can help dramatically improve conversion. It allows for the company to implement what they need in the best possible way as they are not restricted to a current framework.
Custom design will also allow for better SEO implementation which is key for any business to bring in more traffic and increase their online visibility.
Templates can be very limited in terms of flexibility and as the business grows and adapts the website may not be able to expand with it. If your company decides to add in an ecommerce section, integrate social media or allow for email capture this may not be easy to implement which could be costly in the long run. Custom design will allow for scalability and can allow for changes in the user journey to better the customers journey.
So, on the surface templates may be the cheaper option but long term costs to your business make it worth investing in custom design.