Should You Go with the Cheapest Web Design and Hosting Providers?

Cheap web design and web hosting may sound attractive, but many small business owners or marketers are not aware of how "going cheap" can negatively impact their online image and marketing performance. In this article I will explain the key factors that determine the effectiveness and performance of your website.

Why Do Web Design Quotes Vary So Much?
Why Do Web Design Quotes Vary So Much?

First, in order to measure the effectiveness of your website when it comes to website design and hosting, you should know about the two types of audiences who go through your website regularly. One group is people, the second group – are search engines’ spiders. These two audiences have different expectations and they read your website differently. You will want to understand them better prior to designing your website, and choosing a web hosting service. Your careful research will save you lots of time, money, and headaches down the road. Let’s explore your audiences a bit more.

People: When people visit websites, they consciously and unconsciously observe three basic things: the website’s loading speed, its appearance, and its performance (the effectiveness of its function and communication). Because people’s attention spans are fairly short online, if your site doesn’t make a good first impression and communicate effectively within the first 60 seconds; those visitors will leave and might never come back. This will damage your business’s reputation over time.

Today people expect every business to have a website. If your website looks professional and performs well, you will gain more credibility online. People will see that you take your business seriously, which naturally implies that you take your customer service seriously as well. Having a web design company that knows website design, as well as business, can help you create a website that will communicate with your customers effectively.

With expertise in website design, internet marketing and business, your provider can custom design a professional website that is uniquely tailored to your business and your customers’ needs. This will help you to convert new visitors into customers more often.  Avoid wasting your money and time on a cheap templates website that is not fully designed to your business and needs.

Search Engines’ Spiders: To find providers similar to your business online, people often use search engines like Google.com and Bing.com. Therefore, from the beginning you should have your website built and optimized well for search engines’ spiders, so they can effectively crawl (or scan) your website content, Meta tags, and descriptions. This is how spiders learn about your website and how they index your business under specific categories so that specific end users (searchers) will find you when they search. It is very important to find a web design company that is also knowledgeable about Search Engine Optimization (SEO).

Second, there are many web hosting providers out there offering all kinds of prices; from $3/month to $150/month and more. Before you choose a cheap web hosting provider, you’ll want to find out the answers to these questions first:

  1. Why is that web hosting so cheap compared to others?
  2. How would my website perform under that host? How fast will my website load during high-traffic hours?
  3. What kind of security firewall(s) does this web host offer compared to other, more expensive ones?
  4. How fast of a response will I get from tech support if my website is hacked, or down for some reason?

As small business owners, these are important questions to consider prior to select a web hosting company. Try not to let price be the only criteria you use when choosing a web design and hosting provider, because you may get what you paid for, which may hurt your business more than help it.

If you find this article helpful, please share it with others so they can also avoid the common mistakes many others have made. Thank you!


Phong T. Nguyen

BA from St. Olaf College
MBA from University of St. Thomas
SEO from "the School of Hard Knocks."