There are literally hundreds of companies selling premium or free website templates.
So what does this mean for your business?
If you're looking to start your first, or second, web based layout, templates you can probably reduce the overall cost of building a professional website.
A Common Misconception about Templates
Many people assume that because a website is developed using a template, that it will be low quality. This may have been the case 10 years ago, however today; there are thousands of professional graphic designers who make a living designing websites and selling them. One of the largest sellers of professional templates is Template Monster. Just this company alone sells for tens of millions of dollars on a yearly basis.
Free or Premium Template
If you're serious about your business then I highly suggest you pay for a professional designed template for your new website. I have found that free templates tend to be lower quality, since the designer is simply looking to create a free downloadable product for people to use and then market his services. You can find very professional website templates for $ 30 to $ 100. Here is a list of templates and their approximate cost:
- HTML Templates – $ 30 to $ 60
- WordPress Templates – $ 60 to $ 85
- Joomla Templates – $ 60 to $ 85
- Drupal Templates – $ 60 to $ 85
- Magento Templates – $ 120 to $ 240
- OSCommerce – $ 100 to $ 200
Once you've picked out a template you can purchase and download it. Now keep in mind that other people will be able to download the same template. In order to give it a unique look, specific to your company you will need to hire a website template customization company. They will add your logo, insert content, change colors, change the background, etc., etc., basically anything you want. There are no limits.
How Much Will I Save?
Many people who are now starting online business do not have large budgets. When I had a website created 9 years ago for a company I owned, it cost me $ 8000. Today, by using Open Source Software and website templates you can get the same result (or better) for less than $ 3000.
We're going to do a small case study so you fully grasp the concept (I'm all about examples).
We had a client contact us about 1 month ago to build a website for an online school. She was offering home schooling courses for stay at home moms. Based on her requirements we decided to go with WordPress as the content management of choice. WordPress is one of the most popular, and most user-friendly, open-source CMS's available and since she had limited knowledge of websites, this would be perfect. Also she needed a subscription based system of which WordPress has a lot of good plugins available to accomplish this. She started by picking out a template. Then we had a phone conversation with her where she shared her vision and what she wanted it to look like. Because we were using a template she had picked out, we did not need to create a design from scratch and this absolutely saved her a lot of money. Once we complete the customization of her template we installed WordPress on her server and set up the structure of the website (menu, links, pages, etc). In all it took a little under 3 weeks to complete and cost just under US $ 1600.