6 Ways A Cheap Web Design Can Be Expensive

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Updated on: August 23rd, 2022Ken Braun7 min read
6 ways a cheap web design can be expensive

Sometimes people get caught up in the price when considering the creation of a new website or redesigning an existing one, however choosing the right designer for your needs should not just be about cost. Today we are going to go over 6 ways a Cheap Web Design can be expensive for you and your business.

While you might be on a budget there is still a big difference between experienced agencies that are affordable, when you consider the benefits your site will provide you, and then there is just plain cheap.

What is cheap?

Cheap as defined in the dictionary means: costing very little; relatively low in price; inexpensive. It can also mean: of little account; of small value; mean; shoddy.

The important takeaway here is that those are all words you don’t really want associated with a website which is the online representation of your business and brand. It is also imperative to understand that by cheap we don’t mean affordable.

Think of it like buying a new house. A cheaply constructed house is one that the contractor has skimped on materials and cut corners where he could to save money which might mean things aren’t up to code and walls are hiding underlying problems; but hey the price is low.

An affordable site might not have all of the bells and whistles you ideally want, but at the same time the construction of the website and underlying coding are very solid and trouble free, allowing for future additions and no concerns over hidden problems hiding behind the walls and under the floorboards.

6 Ways Cheap can be Expensive

  • Lack of Support – One problem many people have had with cheap designs or agencies that provide services for a low price is that they are stuck with a very low quality of support. That can range from communication about the site, meeting deadlines, ongoing support for questions or problems and even fixing errors that occur down the road that the agency should be responsible for. Time is money and you need to have a site up and running that is functional to make you money and you don’t want to waste time chasing down your designer for answers or help.
  • Stuck with the Intern – Some agencies might talk a good game and have a good portfolio of work to show, but on their “special design deals” that are priced to get you in the door you aren’t benefitting from working with their experienced staff but instead get the entry level designers or interns handling your business. It can almost be like a bait-and-switch where the experienced sales person closes the deal with you, but then you realize you project is being worked on by the third-string.
  • Lack of Functionality – Another hidden pitfall of cheap web design is the lack of functionality that often accompanies them. Many people end up paying for a second site because over time they realize that the first, cheaper design is costing leads and business. How does this occur? There are a number of reasons from bad functionality and navigation that causes customers to leave your site, subpar hosting or design platforms that provide unreliable service, or even improper use of SEO that gets your site ignored by Google.
  • Quick Fix – Another issue with a cheap design is that it only offers a quick fix. By now everyone should realize that a website or web presence is an essential aspect of every business. So in that regard you can expect to have a website for the life of your business. Naturally you will expect your business to grow and change over its lifetime and you will want a site to grow and change with you to match your needs. A quick fix design is just that; like throwing a coat of paint on a wall to cover cracks rather than taking the time to fix the house’s foundation which will cause future cracks. A good design lays the foundation for the future by using good code and design techniques to allow for growth and match your long-term goals as well as short-term needs.
  • Lack of Research – That cheap design is most likely on a tight time constraint which is limited to the actual build of your site which means no time is being spent on research. Research is a critical component of online success these days. How can a good site be built without understand of your business and your industry? How can it be effective without knowing the best methods of lead generation for your demographic? Again, this can affect your ability to generate business which could be an expensive mistake.
  • Lack of Originality – While this may not be a big deal to some people, for many it is. Who wants to be like everyone else? In the business world, using a cookie-cutter design that lacks originality is not only cheap but it will also affect the perception people have of your business and brand. How does using an unoriginal design set your business apart and show people you are different or better than the competition? Many times people make a decision about a business solely from their online presence; if that presence is costing you business that is another expensive mistake.

The Bottom Line

The bottom line is that your website is an essential part of any business and can be a key component of your business plan, method for generating leads and closing sales. While an inexpensive design might save money initially, our 6 ways a cheap web design can be expensive shows how that upfront savings might cost your business a lot of money in the long run.



Published on: December 14th, 2015
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