Once you settle on using a website creator to launch your site, you’re not done making decisions. Now it’s time to choose the right website builder for your needs. Are you doing your homework? If not, you could log on one day to find that your page isn’t functioning as promised – if it’s still up at all.
You’ve probably done due diligence in gauging your audience’s interest, but you need to gauge the interest surrounding your website creator/host as well. Are people talking about it? Are they searching for it on Google?
Read reviews and articles about any builders you’re interested in. If possible, see what people are actually paying to use these site creators, if anything. The idea is to get a general consensus about attitudes toward these services.
Later, you’ll compare this to your own impressions.
Here’s a quick and easy test. Reach out to the customer service teams at each of the top website builders. If they respond within 12 hours, it’s a good sign.
Does a day or more pass before they get back to you? That’s a sure sign that you can pass them over. If they can’t be on hand to assist you with any problems concerning your site in the future, it’s too risky (and in this day and age, pretty inexcusable).
If you like the swiftness of their response, engage them by asking questions. Talk about the features you want your site to have, and ask them their opinion about what templates might interest you. A good company will provide support that knows the product well, and is prepared to sell you on it.
Finally, ask them what the fee would be to build and maintain the website you want. Ask if there’s a refund policy in place, or if they offer a free trial. Free trials are really valuable when testing the ease-of-use factor of these sites.
Take a Tour
The best possible technique for choosing a website builder is seeing the final product in action. Track down blogs and shops who run their sites using a website creator. Consider how much customization went into making good use of their chosen template.
And hey – there’s no rule against writing and asking them directly what they think of the site creator. If they seem receptive, ask how they got that one page or feature to look/operate so well. Assuming you’re not a harsh competitor, there’s nothing unusual about asking your peers what they think of a product or service.
Once you narrow the list down, you’ll need to take the future into account. Would you be able to add more features and pages further down the road, when you’re presumably in a phase of growth? Make sure your rate, if any, will cover everything your site needs for a year at least.
Reliability, popularity, ease of use, price, and versatility: it seems like a lot to consider. But once you’re up and running, the research will pay off, and the rest will be smooth sailing.