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Tuesday, August 20, 2013

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Pros and Cons of Website Templates for Online Business Projects

Overall look of your website is one of the most (if not the most) important  things to consider when making any project live online. The first impression stays for a while and even flawless product quality and service can't overshadow poor look of your online storefront. So if you are going to create an outstanding website, there are only two basic options: designing a completely new project from scratch or using pre-made website templates. I will try to outline main advantages and disadvantages of using related templates as a much more cost-efficient and less time consuming alternative to custom web design.

1.    Money saving. Creating a completely new, quality, custom-designed website will require decent knowledge in web development and design. In most cases this is impossible to achieve without hiring an experienced web designer or even a professional team. High-end web templates will cost you about $50 or even less each and there are even some absolutely free alternatives available. Also templates are usually easy to manage, so there is no need to hire a webmaster since you can do it yourself.
2.    Time saving. This is one of the main disadvantages of custom-made websites. Project completion takes a lot of time due to programming, testing and designing and moreover sometimes it’s hard to predict how much time will all this take. Website templates provide you with instant access to hundreds of themes. All you need is to choose the right one, perhaps tune it a bit and it's ready to go.
3.    Look of the website. There are a lot of web templates out there, so it should be easy for you to find the one that's perfect for you. They can be customized  in many ways to create an attractive look. The great feature is a what-you-see-is-what-you-get web builder coming with many premium web templates for easy editing and customization..
4.    Functionality. Pre-designed web templates already have standard pages and a lot of  advanced opportunities to create additional ones like galleries, blogs, etc. What can be a breeze - simple and convenient navigation links that will help your users to browse through your project easily and find any necessary information without any hassle. CMS powered  templates (such as Wordpress, Joomla, Drupal, etc.) allow you to add your content such as images, videos or blog posts in few clicks only with no special programming skills required.
5.    Search engine optimization. To make your online venture easy to find, you'll need to be ranked highly in search engine results. You'll have to do it yourself or hire a professional SEO expert. Luckily most of website templates come with basic search engine optimization features today that will save some of your time and money.
1.    Can't be completely exclusive. While there is a great amount of templates of different types, you can't be sure that yours is completely unique. An absolutely custom website is created for you exclusively and it's design can't be shared with anyone else on the web.
2.    Flexibility and scalability. In case you'll need to add many more elements to your page, you'll need a web developer to rewrite the page, because most of web templates have a fixed size and limited scalability.
3.    Limited customization. The customization of any web template can be done to a certain point. You'll have to keep in mind that the additional content can change the look and feel of your web page so you'll need to re-size it and the same point concerns image optimization. Also, if your template is HTML5 or Flash-based you'll need special software and skills to customize it.
Before choosing between a ready-made web template and custom website it is better to calculate all financial expenses and time associated with both options. I'd recommend to go with web templates first, since it's a much cheaper alternative and you are able to customize it in future. So you won't have to worry about money spent on development and design. What is your personal experience on this? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.
Author’s Bio:
Post by Martin Lindon - a PR and marketing manager at, a widely-known online destination for premium and free HTML and Flash templates.


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