What Can I Expect With a New Website?

Whether you are looking for tips on how to build a website for free, or wondering what you get from a website designer, it’s important to understand what comes with a new website and what you can expect.

Website Basics

Think of a website as a home. You need 3 things for a website:

  • Domain name — This serves as your ‘address’
  • Hosting — This serves as your ‘property lot’
  • Website — This is your glorious ‘home’

You need all 3 of these in order to have a website publicly accessible on the Internet.

What is Included in the Journey to Build a Website

The following is the process of building a website:

  1. Discovery — This is where your web designer will discuss with you what you are looking for in your new website.
  2. Design — The web designer will design your website and present it to you for approval
  3. Development — The web developer (often the same person as the web designer) will build your website using code that Internet browsers can read, thus making it function on the Internet as a website should.

Often times, content and initial SEO work is also included in a new website quote.

All of the above require time, experience, and technical skills. You may want to save money by designing your own website for free, so you should weigh the time you will spend (which may be double or triple the time a professional will spend) and consider what your time is really worth.

What Not to Expect With a New Website

The following items are not typically included in a new website design and build quote. These are usually an additional charge and quoted separately.

Logo Design — This is an extra charge and if you need a logo, you should pay to have one designed before the website process. This way the designer knows your brand and color scheme.

Instant Excellent Search Rankings — If your website is brand new (and not a redesign), you cannot expect to start off at the top of Google’s search results. Why? It’s not because Google hates new businesses, it’s because they prevent SPAM sites from ranking well. Often, new sites are SPAM sites. In order to rise in the rankings, your website must have ‘age’ and SEO work must be done.

Ongoing SEO Work — SEO is a marathon, not a sprint. It requires expertise, patience, research, and time. Google made it this way to help legitimate and worthy sites rank well. Ongoing SEO pays off by an increase in search rankings and ultimately more visitors to your website. The price is well worth the reward.

Ongoing Website Maintenance — Just like you wouldn’t order a burger and expect one every time you are hungry without paying extra, you cannot expect a web developer to be on call to update and maintain your website without compensation just because he built your website. Be especially careful if you are going to make changes on your own. Any errors you may make can end up costing you more money by having a web developer fix them.

Make sure you verify with your web designer and developer exactly what is included and what is not included in your new website so there are no surprises.