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Web Agency vs. Wix/Squarespace? Which is Better for Your Brand?

Published Mar 26, 2021

Hiring a professional web agency isn’t cheap. The cost of working with a firm can start at a few thousand dollars and go up from there. Why would you need to pay so much money when you could just use a simple service like Wix or Squarespace?

In this article, we’ll address the big debate a lot of companies ask themselves: “Web Agency vs. Wix/Squarespace?” We’ll take a look at the differences between a website builder and a web agency and find out who would be better off hiring an agency…and why.

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Differences Between Web Agency vs. Website Builders

web agency vs wix/squarespace

To be completely transparent, we should admit that CMDS is a digital marketing and web agency. Surprise! We specialize in branding, marketing and professional web services to create high-performing, customized websites for brands looking to grow in the digital space.

But, we offer a surprising perspective on website builders like Wix and Squarespace. Simple drag-and-drop builders are pretty cool for smaller businesses embarking on their first ever online presence. However, it’s a lot like comparing apples to oranges – they’re certainly not for everyone.

Let’s take a look.

What is a Website Builder like Wix/Squarespace?

web agency vs wix/squarespace

Before we dive into the meat of the article, let’s review: what is a website builder.

In a nutshell, do-it-yourself website builders like Wix and Squarespace are designed as a basic tool for organizations who lack design skills. Instead of needing to learn the fundamentals of web design, users can select from pre-made templates. 

These builders are also helpful for those who know nothing about coding. They don’t need to understand it and they certainly don’t need to write it. So, instead of going cross-eyed trying to learn CSS or a HTML coding language, users rely on preset coding and function abilities. 

Basically, they offer simple tools that allow pretty much anyone – from a young entrepreneur starting a dog-walking service, to a retired grandma who wants to sell her famous birthday cakes – to create a simple website.

But, just because you know how to use a hammer doesn’t mean you can build a house…

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What Does a Web Agency Do And How Are They Different?

web agency vs. wix/squarespace

Search for website builders and you’ll generate millions of results and a lot of ads. It’s a very competitive space. And for a good reason. While they provide user-friendly tools with simple design options and layouts, they’re not the optimal choice for brands who are looking to grow – and be competitive in their industry.

You see, websites that have been built with Wix or Squarespace cannot be customized for performance or offer solutions to any new problems. They’re plug-and-play functions are not customizable. And, without an organized page structure in the back end, it can lead to chaos for larger websites down the road.

Need to migrate website data and switch platforms or go to WordPress in the future? That’s not going to happen very easily on Wix or Squarespace. Users are also limited in SEO efforts, the search engine optimization tactics used that drive traffic to a website. They are also typically unable to allow for enhancements or integrate any third-party plugins and conversion tracking software like ERPs or CRMs. Need support? We won’t even get into the frustrations of long hold times.

It’s the job of a web agency to provide customized solutions for organizations to help them stand out and get found on search engines (over their competitors). It’s their job to help brands connect with their audience to build a trust-filled relationship. It’s their job to communicate with the client and provide an amazing website with clean code…and then some. Of course, this all depends on who you hire.

Assuming you hire someone of quality, a web agency can bring a lot to the table.

Starting with a deep discovery session, a good web agency will take the time to understand a business from the inside out…and their customers, too. They’ll tailor the strategy, design and structure of the website specifically to facilitate conversions and generate more leads (if that’s your goal).

Need to separate yourself from the competition? A proven website agency will help you unveil and communicate your UVP (Unique Value Proposition), that amazing, interesting edge you have over your competitors. Having a custom design with a strategic message and call-to-action can get a brand noticed in today’s crowded space.

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Who Should Hire a Professional Web Agency versus Build a Website with Wix or Squarespace

It’s so tempting. You need a website. And you need one fast. Why not do it all on your own? Besides, you want to save a few bucks in the process.

The truth is, hiring a professional web agency is not for everyone.

As a small, startup business or an entrepreneur just venturing out on their own, someone who doesn’t have much (or maybe any at all) revenue, then using a simple, cheap website builder like Wix, Squarespace or Weebly is a perfectly fine choice. Those who might consider sticking with a website builder include a hobbyist, blogger, unfunded startup, small non-profit or an entrepreneur testing out an unproven product or service.

However, using a website builder may end up costing an organization in the long run a lot more- it may seem all good and easy on the outside but in the long run it ends up being a nightmare. The thousands of dollars in wasted man hours (most-likely their own), frustrations and energy is just the start… it’s the lost revenue from lost opportunities that are the bigger concern.

Those who might be better off hiring a web agency include local small to medium size businesses, large enterprises and solopreneurs such as real estate professionals, accountants, lawyers, etc. Pretty much anyone who needs a professional and unique web design that is search engine optimized, built for growth and designed to generate more leads and sales.

In the end, you must decide whether a customized website vs Wix is best for your business and also your budget. As a website development agency, our choice is to use a customized CMS platform, like WordPress, because it gives our clients more control over their site and the code. Of course, choose the option that better suits your goals.

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Working with a Full Service Web Agency

web agency vs wix/squarespace

At CMDS, we know that building a quality website takes strategic planning. Brand voice, business goals, audience, etc, they all shape and guide every decision we make. The websites our team creates are customized (no templates here) to achieve specific brand goals. Collaboration among our creative design team, SEO experts, web developers, content writers and branding experts allow us to generate future-proof ROI for our clients.

Did you start with a DIY website builder, but now your company has started to grow? Did you build your own website more than two years ago? There’s a good chance that it’s outdated and needs to be brought up to speed with your offerings. It’s probably time to invest in a professional website that can be tailored to your evolving brand objectives.

We love to help during these kinds of transitions. It’s exciting to watch our clients grow from generic to unique and guide them along the process. Your success equals our success.

Take a look through our client portfolio and give us a call at (732) 706-5555 when you’re ready to talk shop.  Read more about, “How to Choose a WordPress Web Development Agency” on our blog.

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