Given all the content managements systems available and all the pre-engineered templates available from China and India, do I need to re invent the wheel?
Would you buy a new car only if were one of a kind and custom built to your exact specifications? Does your business need custom built Porche or a Volkswagon?
This is what a lot of small businesses are still doing and paying a high price to get.
Branding and identity have very little to do with, if your navigation is along the top the side or elsewhere, as long as the site layout is easy to navigate and holds the information.
The frame work is the same on every car, 4 wheels, steering wheel and brakes, gas pedal etc. So why should you pay a web company to build an original web site?
Much of the structure and complexity of building web site has been reduced to templates, it may sound generic and cheap, but a skilled programmer can quickly customize these templates with your colors, your logo and your navigational structure. No design required , because it already done for you. You add the pictures, the content and functionality from 1000's of free plug-ins and extensions.
What use to cost 1000's now cost the time to install and configure. Frame works like Joomla, Word Press and Drupal, work exactly this way.
Moreover, you have control of the content, an upgrade path and online resources to teach and inform you of changes and problems, without having to pay a consultant.
Start-up costs as well long term owner ship drops to almost nothing.
Where you host your site.
Security, Performance and Flexibility can only be guarded by well supported and resourced Web Site Hosting.
What does not make sense is spending your $1000's of web dollars on design and programming, and only $10-$20 on hosting, it should be the other way around.
Your hosting is the key to protecting you web site and ensuring it reaches the largest audience.