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why custom vs commercial website templates

6 Reasons You Should Not Choose a Website Template

Custom Web Design vs Commercial Web TemplatesSo, you think you can build it yourself. Maybe you don't have the time or maybe you've talked with a few designers to handle it for you. What you should beware of is a "web designer" selling you a $50 commercial template and charging you a crazy premium for putting it together when you could have done the same.

"If you think it’s expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur.”

icon shameless plugShameless plug: We've developed our own commercial themes, and we've had great success doing it. We're an Elite Author on the world's top selling digital marketplace. All this should really mean to you is that we have the skills to build a professional website from scratch. These are skills that most designers in North Alabama don't possess.

Here's Why You Should Think Outside the Box

1. Templates Aren't Flexible.

Commercial templates have a very rigid layout. They often force you to fit their mold and populate your content around their design. Sure, you can be creative if you have time to write and develop the content, but how well do you think that "designer" is going to do when they know little to nothing about your organization? A tailor-made, custom website will allow you the flexibility to convey your message with all thoughtfully placed call-to-actions and considerations best suited to engage your visitors.

2. A Dime a Dozen.

Millions of websites use commercial templates, so consider how many websites may have your very same design and layout, with the exception of a few choice words and your logo. Would you want your website to look the same or almost identical as your competitor or company across the street? It could happen. The risk is a poor impression from a visitor, potential customer or client. You don't want to look cheap.

3. Obviously, Hard to Customize.

Customization of these templates can only go so far, and you may find yourself backed into a creative corner. Chances are, the template designer won't quite know what to do when you ask for an additional section or content area on a specific page. If they are capable of this, then they too should build custom websites, and because they use commercial templates, they're just lazy or hoping to pull one over on you for a quick dollar.

4. Poor Code.

You might not think you care about the quality of code of your commercial template, but many pre-packaged themes are notorious for causing issues and security vulnerbilities. What's worse, designers that use templates rarely have the skills to diagnose and fix your problem. At best, they'll try to get in touch with the developer who probably has hundreds of emails in their queue, meanwhile all you can do is hurry up and wait. Remember, SEO is just as tech related as it is content driven. Which leads us to...

5. Bad SEO.

Many commercial templates aren’t designed with SEO in mind, so getting the search engine spiders to crawl your site could be difficult. You're at the mercy of your template designer. Most other local designers will default to a WordPress theme (a CMS originally designed for blogging), and these are notoriously difficult to optimize if not developed properly. Your designer didn't build from the ground up, so they're only giving you the best plug-and-play option possible. SEO starts with a plan, not a boxed model. How important is it that you outrank your competitors?

6. Price vs Hassle

Using a custom design agency might cost a bit more than using a commercial template, but it will spare you the hassle of dealing with a template that doesn't quite fit your needs, ultimately saving you time and money. Custom web design doesn't necessarily mean expensive, it just means tailored to your brand.

The truth is, we prefer to provide value and be an asset to our local clients over developing commercial templates. We enjoy the partnerships and love seeing the results of each and every client. Not to mention, we've seen too many of these designers butcher our work. All they had to do was follow the outline, but some can't even do that. Give your website a professional touch and let us build you something from the ground up. It could more affordable than you might think. Just reach out

Don't be fooled.
Seriously, you could show us portfolios from other North Alabama designers, and we'd show you multiple $50 commercial templates. Some other local firms even use commercial templates for their own website.

If that's doesn't say something, we're not sure what will. If that's what they're selling, and you're aware of it, then there's nothing wrong with that. Just make sure that you know what you're getting when you hire a design firm. Ask them directly if they'll be building a custom design or using a commercial template. It may be the one question that saves you lots of money and hassle down the road.

Webunderdog Web Design is a professional web design company in Huntsville, Alabama, offering "custom" web design, development & SEO services for businesses and organizations of all sizes througout the U.S. We've been in business since 2008, and we're an Elite Author on the world's top selling digital marketplace for commercial web themes and templates. We know our stuff. Have questions? Get in touch ⟶

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