Updated: Mar 28
Whether you consider yourself a freelancer, an entrepreneur, or a small business owner, odds are that you’re used to doing things yourself. Starting and running a business of your own requires resourcefulness, creativity, and a willingness to get the job done, no matter what it takes. However, if you want to build a strong reputation for your business — and keep it intact — there are some things you simply shouldn’t DIY.
Your business website reflects your brand, your vision, and your talents. You might think that makes you the best person to design it, but you couldn’t be more wrong.
Despite how easy Squarespace and other website builders make it seem, designing your own website is a great way to end up with a product that looks and functions nothing like you imagined, especially if you’ll be selling your products or services online. That’s because building a website that looks great and functions seamlessly on every kind of device requires more than a vision. It requires a lot of technical skill.
Instead of spending countless hours on DIY designing your site and setting up your online marketplace, only to end up with a site you’re unhappy with, hire a professional developer skilled in web design and ecommerce from the start. If you search for a web developer whose portfolio matches your aesthetic, you’ll achieve the look you’re after in a site that meets the high standards users have to come to expect.
Of course, you’ll also want to make sure you have a site that you can update and use as your offerings grow and change. If you plan to update the store or the blog yourself, it’s okay to use off-the-shelf solutions like Shopify and hire an ecommerce developer for customization. Just look for someone who has experience in the platform you select. These days, you can easily find freelance ecommerce developers via online job boards. These well-organized databases let you quickly connect with freelancers in virtually any industry.
Speaking of branding — while most people think of a logo when they hear the word “brand,” branding goes much deeper than that. Branding defines your business, including what it does, what it stands for, and who it’s trying to reach. It’s also the foundation of your business’s reputation, which means it needs to be good. Unfortunately, most business owners who do their own branding don’t think beyond a logo and a snappy tagline. But without branding that resonates with your target audience and is recognizable across all platforms, you’ll struggle to make a lasting impression on the audience you’re aiming to reach.
Instead of risking a DIY brand that falls flat, invest in a branding consultant who can help you develop an authentic brand voice that speaks to your customers. A good branding consultant will use data to identify your target audience and develop graphics, marketing materials, and web content that not only looks good but speaks to your customer base.
5 Jobs You Can Keep In-House
Branding and web design are too important to risk amateurish results, but there are some things you can easily keep in-house — especially when you have the right tools in your pocket.
● Social media scheduling and engagement with social media management tools.
● Scheduling meetings and appointments with self-serve appointment booking.
● Bookkeeping with cloud-based accounting tools.
● Inventory management with inventory software.
● Getting paid with affordable invoicing tools.
It’s good to have a bootstrap mindset when you’re a budding entrepreneur operating on a tight budget. Take that mindset too far, however, and you could end up shooting yourself in the foot. When it comes to big-picture stuff like your business’s brand and web presence, invest in the professionals who have the skills to give your business a leg up.
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