The industry has become inundated with companies telling you how fast and easy and fun it is to create your own website. But before you jump on that seemingly nonstop bandwagon, there are a few things you should really take into serious consideration.
Do You Want Your Website to Rank High on Search Engines?
It is a well-known fact that template websites do not have the rank potential as custom sites, even over extended periods of time. When you opt towards creating your own website, in most cases you will not be dealing with code. And as a result of this, you may not have the technical savvy needed to install important updates, or the proper knowledge of things like header tag placement, meta data requirements, page speed guidelines, structured data markup and other important SEO guidelines.
With a custom designed website, a skilled developer will know exactly how to structure your site in a manner that is more appealing and visible to Google and other major search engines. Additionally, their ongoing knowledge of algorithm updates and technology roll-outs will ensure that your site is completely up-to-date, and in the best possible position to get found. Its not how "pretty" a website is, its how its made. Just because you have a pretty website, what good is it if you are not on the 1st page of Google? You should always build a website around the user experience as well as following Google's guidelines, or if your looking for a personal website where SEO does not matter, WordPress is your best solution for a starter website, but not for an experienced programmer.
The screen shot below is a perfect example and proof to why WordPress is not the best solution for building websites. As you can see we have a nice line chart directly from Google Webmaster Tools showing the history of the organic visibilty of a website on Google. The client wanted his custom built website converted to WordPress because a friend said WordPress was the best. Now after several weeks of switching to WordPress the website has completely vanished from Google. If WordPress was so good, why would it vanish from Google? Why wouldn't it keep increasing? WordPress was made for people to blog about personal life or hobbies etc... WordPress is made for the average person who just wants a website, it is NOT a solution for building a successful website based on Google's guidelines.
Are You Looking for a Pretty Website or a Successful One?
While it's understandable that you want your website to look good, far too many companies and small businesses become obsessed with visual appearances. Something we've been saying for years is that it's not how pretty a website is, it's how well it performs.
Today's build-it-yourself template websites are designed to be esthetically pleasing and easy to create, but they tend to lack the backend technology and uniqueness that Google and other major search engines are looking for when considering where to rank them.
Will Your Website be a Key Source of Revenue?
If you're banking on the success of your new website for income, you're absolutely going to want to consider a custom website. With any site, it takes time to get recognized by the search engines. Historically, and because of the Google-friendly technology they utilize, the process seems to be much faster with sites that are built from scratch using proper code, image dimensions, meta and other essentials.
The ironic thing is that there's nothing really shocking about any of this, and you can see it for yourself right now. Think of any industry, perhaps even your own for example, and run a search of the main keywords; if you don't know the keywords, this is even more reason to work with a professional developer. Look at the sites that rank on page one, and then count how many of them have been created on sites like Wordpress, Wix and others. You'll see that this is not merely speculation.