Which platform to choose when building a website for your business

Which platform to choose when building a website for your business Selecting the right content management system for your business is one of the most important decisions you will make during the initial stages of your website construction. Keep reading for a summary of some of the most popular platforms, together with some key advantages and disadvantages, to assist with making the right decision for your business needs.

Wix

With a business model which aims to combine advanced technology and beauty, Wix is simple, user-friendly and well designed. Templates are numerous and advanced, with mobile and SEO optimisation, personalised domains, secure hosting and full customer support.

Advantages

Thanks to the drag and drop feature, adding images, video and text to your chosen template is simple, with no tech or coding skills required. Creating a basic website within minutes is perfectly achievable and maintenance should be straightforward. There are a variety of monthly plans to choose from and as each one is under £20 a month Wix is easily one of the most cost-effective platforms.

Disadvantages

If investing in a platform with the ability to grow with your business in the long-term is important, Wix may not be the ideal choice for you. Although it will certainly get your business online, if it doesn’t have the level of flexibility you need you’re likely to outgrow the platform relatively quickly. Also, advanced SEO features are not available and in many cases will cost extra, requiring higher monthly fees in the long run.

Squarespace

The popularity of Squarespace has soared over the last 12 months and it’s mostly down to its consistent delivery of professional looking websites at relatively affordable prices.

Advantages

Squarespace’s template library is second to none, with a variety of clean, visually pleasing designs that showcase content beautifully. Each template is highly responsive and easily customisable if you know your way around some basic coding. With integrated analytics, sophisticated security, and a dedicated support team, securing a high-quality website for your business is straightforward and virtually impossible to get wrong.

Disadvantages

On a platform where everything seems to work seamlessly, actually working on backend development does seem to feel a little more complicated than necessary, and with so many customisation options you do need to have a solid design in mind to ensure everything ends up looking aesthetically pleasing and cohesive. If your business requires extensive marketing tools, you may find Squarespace somewhat limiting.

WordPress

More than 70million websites worldwide are hosted via WordPress, which means that it’s highly likely that whoever you want to manage your website will be familiar with the platform and its features.

Advantages

The wide variety of templates and plugins available means that adding new features to your design is a simple process, helping you to ensure that your website consistently provides a great user experience and keeps on top of emerging design trends. Its popularity means that the platform is consistently improving and adapting to major changes and advancements made within the industry so you can feel secure in the knowledge that you’re investing in something that will grow with your business.

Disadvantages

Although a major advantage overall, the number of updates required to keep on top of security and browser advancements can sometimes negatively affect aspects of your website, particularly plugins that may not have been updated at the same time. This is usually relatively simple to correct but it will require some knowledge of coding and HTML to be able to fix any issues quickly and efficiently. If you go with this option, that is the one we recommend for most of our clients make sure you don’t try to save money on hosting. Try using a hosting provider like WP Engine, the same hosting provider used by big brands like CNN and keep your plugins always updated to avoid hacking.

SITE123

Marketing itself as the easiest and fastest free website builder around, you won’t need any design or coding skills to get your website up and running with SITE123. Templates are fully optimised for mobile devices, designs are SEO friendly and you can even utilise its selection of royalty free images.

Advantages

If you need to get your website up and running quickly and efficiently this could be an ideal choice. The platform will run through everything you need to know, with each template helping you to structure your website to secure the best possible journey for your users.

Disadvantages

Although its main attraction is its simplicity, you may find that your business outgrows the basic features relatively quickly. Whilst it is possible to create a simple online store, we recommend that businesses with a strong ecommerce aspect strongly consider alternative platforms to ensure the delivery of a comprehensive shopping experience. These alternative platforms include Magneto and Shopify, but we will very shortly publish a separate ecommerce guide to assist you further.

Takeaway Considerations

1. Functionality

If you need a professional looking portfolio with a template that will ensure your content is the star of the show, Squarespace could be the platform for you. Alternatively, if you foresee your business growing quickly, a platform such as WordPress with its adaptable features and inherent flexibility may be more suitable.

2. Budget

In addition to the costs of monthly plans, don’t forget to factor in design and maintenance costs. Don’t panic if you don’t have a large budget initially as the more affordable platforms demonstrate that achieving a professional website doesn’t have to cost the earth.

3. Security

Protecting your business and your customers must always be a primary concern. You need to know your data is stored securely and that your website will be able to cope with the levels of traffic you expect to receive every day.

4. Ranking on Google

If you are looking to build a big business you’ll need advanced SEO features. That means getting a higher position on Google. Depending on your budget we may recommend using WordPress due to it’s flexibility and maintenance or even building your own platform. Also, if you already have a website with certain results and are planning to change platform or build a new one by all means work with a digital strategist to help you stay on top of the SEO game. Why not booking a digital strategy call with us today to discuss your needs?

5. Site Speed

Site speed affects your business, your Google ranks and user experience so it is very important you consider that when evaluating the best platform to build your site on. How Site Speed Affects Your Business

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