Can you really have a good website without a professional?

We’ve talked about this before, those commercials on TV for a “professional quality website” for a couple hundred bucks or less. You also have CMS sites like WordPress, Drupal, Joomla, and others that promise the world and that anyone can build a website with their products. Just how easy are they though?

We are working on a new website for our company and are using some really neat technology for the e-commerce side of things. The only problem is we are going to need to put the entire website into this new platform and the further we dig into it, the more time we see it’s going to take. The company told us up front everything is 100% customizable and “anyone” can build their own site with this software. If you know HTML and CSS you can format it to any design you like or pick one of their templates and build the site from there.

We started with that route to play around and see how easy it’s going to be and quickly we were writing our own code to get what we wanted. What happened to anyone being able to build the site even at a basic scale? Most people don’t know code.

And knowing HTML and CSS, and being an expert in it are 2 different things. Sure, I can rewrite all the CSS code (15,000+ lines of code) and get the site to look exactly how I want, make it responsive, etc. But seriously? That’s going to be a tremendous undertaking. So much so would it have been easier to go another route?

The point of this post is just to point out that all the various CMS sites out there, the use our online templates and anyone can build their site…those types of companies are just being misleading. Sure anyone can set it up and get something super basic that might barely function, but for a good solid website, you still need to hire a professional no matter which route you go.

We can at least write code, read code, and get the end result you want even if we don’t like the CMS platform you chose. And no, we won’t be teaching you how to write code, if you really want to know there’s classes for that at your local university or community college.