I see a lot of web designers who despise websites like Wix.com with a passion because these sites allow anyone to create their own website… for free. I’m going to be controversial and say as a web designer I welcome websites like this so let me explain why…
The field of web design is one of those rare business models where anyone can buy a piece of software and call themselves a web designer. WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) tools can allow anyone to build a website and with the online website builders like Wix it gets even easier to create one for free.
The ‘free cost’ is the most important point in this post.
Over my years I have had dozens and dozens of people contact me wanting a website exactly like Amazon or Ebay and to pay for this humongous and all time-consuming project they would say they have:
- A budget under £100.
- No budget at all but will give me a percentage from the Billions in sales the site will make.
- Uncle Bob’s 12 year old Nephew Jimmy who will do it for £10 so I should be able to closely match that price.
People don’t understand the value of a web designer who has spent half his life fine-tuning his skills plus spending years expanding on it. Companies I contracted for were happy to pay me £450+ a day and keep me for the entire length of their projects because they understood the skills I brought to the team.
There are many, many people out there who want an online presence but have no way of paying for it. If websites like Wix didn’t exist these people would probably not have a website.
Once they have a website and they start getting a trickle of sales they start to realise the importance of a website and also start to realise the many limitations of having something for nothing. All these free website builders have issues; adverts on their pages, search engine optimisation issues, slow loading times, lack of positional control and so on.
When I get enquiries from people wanting a website, with a budget of a packet of cigarettes, I can now happily pass them onto these website builders. No way could I offer working on their project for the Ten pence an hour I would get for it, but by offering them a solution to match their budget, I plant a seed. When the time comes that they see the value of a bespoke website they will hopefully think of the friendly web designer who was happy to find a solution for them.
I value and welcome these WYSIWYG site builders because I can give the enquirer a solution that is perfect for them. I like being able to find a solution and I don’t mind that I made nothing from it. At a later date that friendly exchange could bring about a bespoke website, designed by myself, that will really work for their business.