Long ago, building a website required decent coding knowledge. But now, you get many website-building options – even for those who aren’t tech-savvy.  

You can either hire a web designer or use a website builder. Each gives you different benefits in terms of budget, functionality, and control, among others. 

Choosing the right method matters for your business. Each option involves exerting time, effort, and money. You wouldn’t want to waste resources on the wrong one. 

So, which route should your business take? Let this comprehensive guide help you choose. 

What’s the difference? 

Website Builder  

Website Builder

Website builders continue to grow popular over the years.  

A website builder is a software that makes building websites a breeze. It usually comes with ready-to-use templates and a drag-and-drop feature, so you won’t need to do any coding at all to put a website together. 

Since you get pre-built templates, you don’t get much freedom in terms of design and functionality. But you can still put up a fully functional website in a matter of minutes at a low cost. 

RECOMMENDED: How to Build a Website with the Crazy Domains Website Builder 

Web Designer 

Web Designer

Web designers have the skills and expertise to build websites of all sizes and shapes. From a simple business site to a complex ecommerce shop — you name it. 

All you need to do is provide them with a full creative brief on the exact design you want for your website. Web designers will then assess how long the project will take and when you can expect the final output. 

RECOMMENDED: 4 Key Elements to Writing a Website Creative Brief 

Website Builder vs. Web Designer: 4 Factors to Consider 

How do you choose the method that best fits your business needs? Ask yourself these four questions:  

1) What’s your budget?  

If you’re a startup with a tight budget, we recommend using a website builder. 

Many website builder apps offer free plans where you get to use all basic web-building features. But if you want a more professional website, you can always upgrade to get access to other features – such as your own domain name, email addresses, SEO, and more. 

Hiring a web designer typically costs more. After all, you’re paying for their level of skill and expertise. If you’ve got the budget to spare, a web designer is a great investment to make.   

2) How do you want your website to look and function? 

Different kinds of websites

Website builders have a wide range of professional-looking templates that fit every kind of business. Whether you’re an accountant, business owner, or freelancer, there’s a guaranteed template that works. 

But in some cases, you might not find the template of your taste. Or you want a feature that’s not available on the website builder.  

That’s where web designers come in. Whatever you want your website to look like — in terms of design and functionality — they’ll work around it. 

If your needs are simple — say, you want to have a business website that lists your services or sells your products online — then a website builder is a more efficient route. Most website builders are robust enough to handle resources for any kind of small business. 

But if you have heavy demands, like if you’re catering to a huge audience or handling complex business needs, web designers are ideal for the job.  

3) How well do you know programming and design? 

If you know CSS and PHP well enough, you won’t break a sweat using a website builder. 

The templates offered in most website builders are fully customisable. Apply your programming and design knowledge in tweaking a template to your liking.  

Even if you don’t have any programming knowledge but are still interested to build a website on your own, you can. Website builders don’t have a steep learning curve, so knowing how to use one isn’t complicated. 

But if you want to focus your time and energy on other business aspects, web designers are always around. Let them do the coding for you while you sit back and work on something else.  

4) How soon do you want it? 

Want to have a website in a snap? Go for a website builder. 

Templates are already pre-designed for you to have a solid website in a crazy quick and easy manner. It only takes a few clicks. Choose a template, edit the content, tweak the colours and fonts, and adjust the settings. You’ll be ready for launch in no time.  

But if you have ample time for the perfect website, choose a web designer. 

Web designers will go through brainstorming sessions, market research, wireframing, testing, and revising when creating a website. It does sound like a huge workload, but as they say, good things take time.

So which method works for you? 

Both web designer and website builder offer benefits for your business.  

Website builders are best for beginners who are still on their way to grow their business. Meanwhile, web designers work best for medium-to-large enterprises who can afford to shell out more.  

At the end of the day, it all boils down to your business needs, technical know-how, and budget.   

Learn more tips and tricks on building a website here.