Business Website Development Using a Professionally Designed Templates

By Jan Zimmerman

Templates are not as flexible as a custom business marketing website, but they can save you significant money while maintaining graphic integrity. You can launch a template site very quickly and be confident that navigation will work. With a template to take care of design and programming, you can focus on content.

Think of templates as the equivalent of buying business stationery from an office supply store. You can hire a graphic designer for custom work or order letterhead and business cards from a store catalog, customizing ink colors and paper stock. In terms of the web, you select a template with navigation and customize it with your color selection, logo, text, and photographs.

If you can’t afford a custom design right now, use a template as a placeholder. Put your money into marketing until you build a web presence and set aside the revenues. Later, you can redesign the site with your profits.

You can choose templates based on three factors: cost, customizability, and skills required. Here are some options to consider:

  • Select a package solution that includes your choice of template design, hosting, and a variety of other options, based on your needs. This is the simplest and usually the least expensive option, but also the least flexible. If you want, you can hire a designer to advise you on color choice or to tweak the template a bit to make it look terrific.

    The following illustration shows the Gusto Pizza site created with a template from Virb. The site combines sophisticated graphic sensibility with straightforward navigation.

    The Gusto Pizza site is an excellent example of a template-based design. [Credit: Courtesy of Gusto
    Credit: Courtesy of Gusto Pizza Co.
    The Gusto Pizza site is an excellent example of a template-based design.
  • Buy a template design that is specific to your industry and upload it to a host that you’ve selected separately. This requires more knowledge and skill.

  • Hire a company that specializes in a particular industry, with a selection of templates that they customize for you. This is more expensive than the other two solutions but still less costly and less time-consuming than a fully custom design.