As a business owner, you sometimes have to find cheap solutions to expensive problems. There isn’t always money in the budget for the high-priced computer you want, the fancy office you had your eye on, or the advertising blitz you’d love to run. In fact, you may find yourself scrambling for bargain-basement answers and resources from time to time.

As tempted as you might be to carry that thinking over to your digital marketing plan, I beg you to not fall for the trap of getting the cheapest website you can find. I know there are companies offering free templates and specials on “professional” websites that seem unbeatable, but you should stay away from them.

I’m giving you this advice for your sake, not mine. To help you understand why, here are a few reasons cheap websites always end up costing you more than good ones…

Templates And DIY Websites Don’t Look Good
A cheap website is like a cheap suit. Customers can spot it from a mile away. When they do, it’s your reputation that takes a hit. They may decide not to work with you (because there are a dozen other companies with more credible websites just a click away), or they may low ball you in their dealings because it seems like you really need their business. Either way, you end up losing out.

The worst part about this kind of issue is that no one will ever tell you why they are doing business with you, or the real reason they won’t pay more for your services. So, you’ll just keep bleeding money again and again, without ever finding the true cause.

Screenshots Won’t Win Customers For Your Business
Usually, when business owners are looking at cheap options for web design, it’s because they’ve been somewhat impressed by a set of screenshots they’ve seen on a website or TV commercial. However, there are a couple of things to remember. The first is that your finished website probably won’t look like those images after you’ve inserted your own photos and text. The second is that the aesthetics of your website are only part of the finished product.

Years of experience have taught us that programming, functionality, and online marketing are what really help you make money on the web. A site that looks good is necessary, but not enough. And if you’re counting on your template or DIY website to help you attract customers, you’re going to be waiting a very long time.

Cheap Websites Crash And Fail Frequently
When a customer comes to your website and it crashes, or fails to load on their mobile device, it sends a terrible message. Potential customers may think your company is out of business, or that your website is a source of viruses and spam. That’s worse than if you didn’t have any online presence at all.

Naturally, the cheapest websites are the ones that tend to crash and fail. That’s because they are overloaded with junk code, weren’t built to be used over the long run, or have conflicts with the kinds of plug-ins and apps you have to install to make them run. By the time you discover this, of course, you’ll be wishing you had simply paid for a quality website from the start.

Saving money is a great thing, but you have to be careful about where those savings come from. Cheap websites always cost more than quality ones do in the long run, so save yourself a heap of time and trouble by making a smart choice when evaluating different web design options