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Web Design: Content Procurement
There is a debate among web design experts as to who is responsible for procuring content for the website. Many professionals want the content to be the responsibility of the site owner. The reasoning is simple – the site owner should have a better understanding of the site products or services than the web designer. The other side to the argument is that the web designer needs to assist the site owner in obtaining original knowledge-based articles to compliment the site. In this scenario the web designer also works with freelance writers to develop all site content. This includes everything from “How To” articles to the “About Us” and “Home Page” sections.
Many web designers are interested in developing the ‘look’ of the website without being responsible for what the content says. However, more and more web design experts are beginning to offer full content services as part of their monthly or annual contracts. Obviously the customer bears all costs related to the content, but many entrepreneurs enjoy less work in site management. One element to this that you should consider is that the web designer will charge you a content fee. The content request is assigned and purchased from a third party freelance writer at a lesser amount.
You could pay 100% more than you might if you had worked with a freelance writer on your own. From this standpoint it makes sense for web design professionals to provide the service because it provides an added revenue stream for them. If, as an ecommerce business, you can write or have someone write original content you may actually have greater options you can consider when it comes to web design. One of the most readily available forms of content is free-to-use article directories. These articles can be used provided you make sure to place all content on your site. This will likely include a brief author biography along with a link to the author’s website. In most cases this is a reasonable exchange for the use of the article. A secondary source could be adaptable content from a supplier. This information is generally provided at no cost due to your partnership with the supplier. A third source is to go directly to a freelance writing source to gain your own original articles.
If one or more of these options is workable you may find a template rich web design/host is an alternative that is cost effective and empowering. You’ll notice I said empowering. This comment was made because of the satisfaction of being able to immediately addressing and altering multiple aspects of the site on your own and without the need for knowledge in html or other coding language can help you take ownership of your own site. Perhaps it all comes down to your budget and to your willingness and ability to manage the content requirements of your website.