When it comes to setting up a new website for your business, you’re faced with a choice: do you opt for a bespoke site, made for you, or do you choose from the many pre-built site templates available? In this article, we’ll look at what you get from a pre-built template and whether or not it’s a good idea to choose one for your website.
What is a pre-built website template?
Also known as ‘themes’, pre-built website templates are just that: a website template that is already built. There’s a huge range of template sites available to suit varying tastes and budgets with different layouts, functionalities and colour schemes to help you find one that best fits your brand. These templates are available from a range of providers, including Wix, GoDaddy and WordPress.
Why do people go for pre-built templates?
For many people, the attraction comes from the low-cost, low-maintenance nature of a pre-built site. There’s no coding required, no development and the site can be put live quickly - for a business with a smaller budget, these templates can form a very attractive proposition. They’re also beneficial for those for whom the site’s design is not a priority.
The downsides of pre-built websites
While there are some advantages to pre-built templates, they’re only suitable for specific criteria. If you opt for a pre-built website, you’ll be sacrificing a variety of benefits - let’s take a look at them in more detail.
They’re not unique
Pre-built templates are very popular, and for this reason, it’s very unlikely that you’re going to be the only business with a specific template. Other brands may have the same design, layout and colour scheme to you, so it’ll be more difficult for you to make an impression on visitors.
Secondly, even with the pre-built elements, you’ll need to invest time and effort to ensure the site matches your business and your brand. It’s not as simple as buying the template and receiving the perfect site.
Slower load times
Load times are a key factor in how Google ranks your site. If your site loads quickly, that is seen as a plus, and Google sees your site as more authoritative. The problem with template websites is that they incorporate a lot of scripts, styles and assets to cover all bases - all these inclusions weigh the site down, so to speak, causing it to load slowly. This can have a negative impact on your site’s visibility in the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs).
Number of Plugins required
Unlike bespoke sites, template sites don’t have custom functionality, which means that you’ll have to download various plugins to use things like ‘share’ buttons for social media platforms, which are important for business growth.
Limited support and assistance
If you pay for a bespoke site from a design agency like Adtrak, you’ll have a dedicated support team on hand who can help you quickly. With pre-built sites, the developer is likely to offer limited or no assistance, and any support that is offered might take a while. In the most serious of cases, your site might go down and you could be left stranded whilst you wait for the theme developer to help you.
No guarantees on quality
With template sites, there’s little indication of their reliability (other than a star rating) and no guarantee of the quality of theme or template. . If you’ve arranged for a bespoke site, you’ll be kept up to date with the stages of development and the rigorous testing deployed by the designers and developers.
A pre-built template might suit your budget and your immediate plans, but if you’re targeting growth, then a bespoke website is one of the best investments you can make. Adtrak create bespoke websites that are built around your requirements and future plans, designed to generate leads and help you grow your business. Talk to us today to discuss your new site.