Before beginning the discussion about the pros and cons of using a template to design a website, we need to know what exactly it is. Spoken in a layman's term, a website template is a pre-designed website that you can buy and then customize the same by adding your own content to launch your own website. The website templates can be customized in terms of color, images and content and leave little to imagination as regards the end product. However, it has both advantages and disadvantages.
Some of the advantages of using a web template to design a website are:
Ready to use
Using a web template to design a web site ensures that you get exactly what you see and that you do not have to worry about making a professional web designer understand your specifications. Moreover, you can make you website look quite different from the template by incorporating copyrighted content and images. Following a unique color scheme will also help.
In today's cut-throat world where time is money, you can not afford to spend months on designing a website. By using a website template you can jump start your website in a matter of few days, as soon as you are ready with your content and image bank. The faster turnaround time will help you get an edge over competition.
Using a website template to design a website is the best option for start-up companies that are often short on capital. While an eye-catching website template is available for as low as $ 35- $ 60, hiring a professional website designer to design a customized website is likely to send you back by $ 5000.
The decision of using templates to design your website will also offer you the advantage of multiple choices as a number of web templates are available online. You can browse through the net to select the web template the best suits your needs. Moreover, you can also benefit from the regular updates that these templates come with so that your website is compatible with the latest software and online technologies. This brings us to yet another advantage of using website templates – functionality.
Apart from the fact that a major of web templates come pre-loaded with standard pages like 'home', 'about us', 'products / services', and 'contact information', some also provide add-on HTML and Flash applications. You can also select web design templates with features such as photo gallery, online polls, live chat or credit card processing if it will serve your purpose.
However, despite the multiple advantages of using website templates, one can not overemphasize the same.
Some of the disadvantages of using a web template to design a website are:
Exclusivity goes for a toss
As web templates are freely available for all to download at a given price, you can not expect to project a unique image of your business unless you have expert help at hand to customize your website.
Complete customization improbable
Even though web templates can be customized to meet certain needs of the web site owners, it will be a stretch to say that it will comply with their each and every requirement. The main problem that one can face while using a web template is the pre-determined space for content and image, which when altered to suit one's needs, can mess up the layout of the page.
Specific skill requirement for customization
Once you have the website template, the onus of customization lies solely on you and unless you have the requisite software and skills to do the same, it will be of little help. Moreover, you also have to optimize your site for search engines.
However, having said that, with the right software at your disposal you can easily outweigh the disadvantages of using a web template to design a website.