Is there such a thing as an easy, simple website?

I am a firm believer that when creating a website for a business you can never ask enough questions. In the past I have had clients who seem irratated with the process of answering questions and just want to get a site as fast as possible.

During these sessions when I’m asking questions about their future website I hear the phrase,  “I want a simple, easy website…You can create that really quick for me right?”

They are usually a business owner and don’t have the time to be bothered thinking about what it takes to create a site. They just heard that they need one. I can relate to that very easily, but if you were going to buy a home you would most likely be very detailed in what you were looking for. You might say I want at least 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, marble tile, etc. You wouldn’t say “Build me a house, I want to move in one week.”

 

Now, I’m not saying building websites is as hard as building a house but there are some similar characteristics to the process. After thinking about this phrase I coulnd’t help but think to myself…Is there such a thing as an easy, quick, no hassle website?

Now, after reading that sentence you probably said yes. You could buy a template, place some images and text and your done. Yeah, that’s what I initially thought.

After digging into this question a little deeper (Much like Winnie the Pooh..”Think, think, think…” he would say as he gently rapped his head.) I think you will start thinking like I did.

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  • You’ve decided on a template. Ok, what template do I choose? There are so many options out there.
  • What colors should I use? What colors will the client want or like?
  • Where does the language for the site come from? Do I write it or does the client provide the text?
  • Does the client have a logo? I mean a real logo, not a logo that was created 15 years ago in Microsoft Paint. Do I need to design a logo?
  • Don’t even get me started on hosting. “My friend said he would host the site for me on his server in his basement”  You have a call – Reliability on line #1, Reliability…. Line…. #1
 [/list]All these questions start to add up and to me it’s clear that their is a degree of difficulty in each website design or set-up but I would never categorize a website as a “simple, easy website”

[pullquote_right] All these questions start to add up and to me it’s clear that their is a degree of difficulty in each website design or set-up but I would never categorize a website as a “simple, easy website” [/pullquote_right]

Whether you are working with a large or small company there are certain elements of creating a website for a client that have to be met. I think it’s my job to help the client understand what I need from them to make a successful website. The client says they don’t care and want an easy site, but if you create a wonderful blue color schemed website and show it to the client you will most likely  hear…”Why did you make the site blue? I don’t like blue”

This isn’t because the client is mean or problematic it simply means there has been a breakdown of communication somewhere during the process. Either the right questions weren’t asked or answered. I cannot stress enough the importance of good communication between the client and designer.

Do you believe that there is such a thing as a simple, quick, website?