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May 16, 2017

Take your best shot at a first impression with a custom website

Ever show up to a party wearing the same thing as someone else? Or maybe it’s not exactly the same – it’s the same shirt, different color. And oh no, over there; someone else just walked in wearing “your” shirt in yet another pattern.

Same style. Same look. Clearly everyone did their wardrobe shopping at the “best” local shop last weekend. Oops. No one will notice, right?

Maybe you’re the type who doesn’t care if what you’re wearing means you’re twinning with someone who’s not your actual twin. But if you’re like most people, you’ll probably admit (at least to yourself) that it’s a bit awkward.

If you’re reading this, you’ve found your way to Forum’s blog on our custom website. No twinning involved with our website; it’s a one-of-a-kind, built by us and for us.

Merriam-Webster defines the adjective “custom” as “made to fit the needs or requirements of a particular person.” Dictionary.com describes it as “made specially for individual customers.” Particular. Special. Individual.

There are lots of ways to build a website for your business. You can probably recall a recent commercial you’ve seen or heard for one of the many companies out there offering to help you create a site in a few easy clicks from a template. If it’s so easy and it’s so cheap to use a template, why would you invest in a custom website for your business?

You invest in every other aspect of your business; why wouldn’t you invest in one that could be a primary source of referrals?

Think about it. In today’s digital obsessed age, everybody goes to the Internet to kick your tires. Your online presence often is the first and strongest impression of your brand and your brand’s perception. The same goes for your competitors.

Everything about your business is custom – your people, your approach, your value add. You have your own name, your own logo, your own materials – all of these things are unique and customized – why should your website be any different?

By definition, templates are used over and over. They also have their limitations. It may work up front, but inevitably you will run up against a function or fashion need that can’t be accommodated. It’s a template; there’s only so much you can do.

And while it may be a more affordable option up front, a template site will probably end up costing you more in the long run (mainly because you’re going to want it to do things it simply isn’t designed to do). Many website design companies that do predesigned sites and utilize templates have a monthly ownership or maintenance fee. When you quit paying, it’s no longer yours.

A custom website is not only an expression of your brand and what sets you apart, it allows you to go beyond a “standard look” to provide enhanced functionality and excellent user experience. A custom site is scalable and can serve you for a long period of time.
And with a Forum custom site, it’s yours. Period.

Now, what are you wearing to the party Saturday?

Coming soon on the blog:

Understand why WordPress is such a great platform and learn why it’s crucial to have a responsively designed website.

Written by Erin Williamson, Creative Strategist