How To Design A Website On A Budget? (5 Money-Saving Tips To Follow)

Did you know that 75% of customers/buyers judge the credibility of a company from its website design? Still, there are many small businesses without a website because they think that it is a costly investment that might not be worth their while.

A website development project in Malaysia costs at least RM1,500 for a basic website and over RM 3,500 for an eCommerce website. These figures are on the higher end (imagine how many hotdogs you can buy) and you are worried of going for cheap website designers. After all, good things are not cheap and cheap things are not good.

There's real fact right here.

You know that you need to have a website for your small business because it is the current digital marketing trends in Malaysia.

The only way to design a website on a budget is simply to do it yourself (DIY) and this will probably costs you a fraction of the cost. Approximately under RM500 per year.

Let's dive in.

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    Cheap Website Development Malaysia Is Not Good

    I can't emphasize how important this is to small business owners. Getting a cheap website design work is good for your wallet but are you willing to redo the design after 6 or 12 months?

    Having a website is like creating a brand for yourself in the virtual world. Do it right at the first time and that will give you continuous benefits even after some good years.

    Tip: Look for affordable web developers in Malaysia

    You don't have to look for the best web developers in Malaysia because it will costs you an arm and a leg. Instead, look for affordable ones (usually freelancers) who are willing to take up the project.

    Affordable Website Developers for Website Design On A Budget

    The Marketing Huddle Project — Affordable & reliable freelance website developer

    Mission-critical: Finding the right web developer could be messy, time-consuming and headache.

    One of the Marketing Huddle Project is to give back to the community by providing affordable and reliable freelance website gigs (often below market price).

    Now, you might think that this is a cool idea but you are unsure. No problem. Get in touch with me using the button below. If you like it, great but if you don't, there's no strings attached. Plus, we will still be friends!

    On average, you should be paying around RM200 to RM400 per hour for a decent website developer (if charge hourly) or an estimate of RM1,500 to RM2,500 for a static website with 10 to 20 pages of content.

    Plus, I do offer a special web development rates for NGO's and non-profit organizations.

    Tip: Pay in full for better rates

    Ask For Discounts Design On A Budget

    I know there are people who will not agree to this, but do you know that you can get some discount when you pay everything in full and upfront?

    Most website developers (that I know) are great people and they wouldn't want to risk their reputation for a mere few thousands.

    Step 1: Start A Website Design With A Low Budget

    When it comes to designing a website on a budget, you need to spend some time and decide what purpose your website will serve.

    Defining your web development goals in the early stages will serve you well (helping you to create a website faster).

    Here are some examples:

    • Are you building a personal blog for your pet cat?
    • Are you building a blog that serves as a portfolio to showcase your experience and work as a professional?
    • Are you starting a website for your small business to gain online visibility?

    The above are 3 examples that are vastly different in terms of complexity. Being said that, the price for their development and design will also be different. However, don’t be discouraged as the difference in price is not going to be astronomical.

    That's why, it is always best to work with a freelance website developer that offers affordable pricing.

    Step 2: Choose The Right Website Platform

    The next step in designing a website on a budget is selecting the right platform for your website. If you had already done some research, you have probably already heard of WordPress, Wix, Squarespace, and a bunch of other website builders.

    WordPress is amongst the most popular because it is free to use and the level of customization that you can achieve on your website is truly endless. Next in line is Wix, which is easier and better if you are only a very small business or are looking to build a portfolio. Keep in mind that like other website builders, you need to pay a monthly subscription if you are using WordPress or Wix.

    As you can see, there are many different options, so it is recommended that you perform some level of your research in-depth to see what each platform offers before you make a decision.

    For business owners who prefer DIY websites

    You loves DIY-ing yourself because you like to be in control and you want to save some money.

    Sure, why not!

    Check out the summary below to help you get started.

    DIY Website Design On A Budget Malaysia
    Best / Suitable for Blogs, portfolio and eCommerce Blogs, portfolio and eCommerce eCommerce stores
    Drag & drop/Visual builder Yes Yes Yes
    Addons/Plugins availability Yes (free and paid) Yes (free and paid) Yes (free and paid)
    Use of use/Beginner friendly Easy and low learning curve Easy and low learning curve Easy and low learning curve
    Ability to customize Easy with or without plugins Easy with paid addons Easy with paid addons
    Free / Paid Free and paid available Paid only Paid only

    For business owners who want value and performance

    Better Quality Website Design On A Budget Malaysia

    Okay, okay and okay! I get it.

    You are a busy business owner and you don't have the time. Maybe, you have no idea where to start and you are certainly not a website developer of any means.

    Here's what you expect from hiring a website development agency vs freelancer.

    Website development pricing High (over RM5,000) Vaires (starts from RM1,500)
    Level of professionalism High Low to high (varies widely)
    Level of expertise High Low to high (varies widely)
    Level of customization High Varies based on pricing
    Level of flexibility Low to mid Mid to high
    After sales support Limited Varies based on pricing

    As you can see, hiring a website development agency is often very structured. You are bound to specifics in the contract and in most cases, any additional support is based on case-to-case basis.

    Compared to freelance website developers, they are often more relaxed and flexible. Of course, what you get from the freelancers are highly dependable to the fees you are paying.

    Step 3: Use Ready-Made Website Themes And Templates

    If you are building a website on a budget, it is advisable to use website themes and templates. They offer some level of flexibility and at the same time, cost-efficient too.

    There are both free and premium themes that you can choose from.

    However, if you want to invest in a premium theme, which significantly fewer websites are using (as it is paid), you can go for one of the paid themes.

    Before you go ahead and select your theme, make sure to closely inspect it and see if it has all the features and functionalities that your business will require.

    StudioPress WordPress themes

    StudioPress is old but gold. There are over 50 themes to choose from — all which are well crafted and documented for support.

    They load fast and works right out of the box. Click here for demo.

    Thrive Themes

    Thrive Themes is another awesome WordPress theme for beginners.

    With drag and drop visual builder, you can easily create your own website design or choose from over 275 ready-made templates. Click here for demo.

    Divi Theme

    Divi is one of the most popular WordPress premium website builder for business owners.

    Affordability and powerful, you can choose over 1,000 ready-made websites with no coding skills required. Click here for demo.

    Step 4: Craft The Content Yourself

    Do you know that content writers for website charge at least RM80 per hour to write content?

    Starting a blog under a tight budget requires more than just website design and layout. Content is required and in most cases, content is always where the money is.

    With the right content, you can easily turn any first website visitors into paying customers or subscribers.

    Dynamic content for your website

    Mission-critical: Utilizing and leveraging the power of dynamic content can prove to be an effort that worth a thousand dollars (or more).

    Tip: Keep It Simply Stupid (K.I.S.S.) concept

    If you don't have the experience in crafting content but still want to do so (to save money), then focus in creating content that is simple to digest and beginner's friendly.

    Keep It Simple Stupid Website Designs On A Shoestring Budget

    Avoid jargon or common industrial languages to make it easy for the readers to understand. At the same time, you are sending the right signals to search engines.

    Hey, Google does get confused when you are using bombastic words!

    Are you ready to design a website on budget?

    Shoestring budget? Don't worry — most of us, including myself had been there. There is nothing to be ashamed of.

    Instead, I do hope that the 4 tips above would give you some guidance on how to design and start a website on a shoestring budget.

    If you need any help, feel free to reach out to me.

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