Custom Design vs. Templates

September 16, 2010 3 min read

As a business owner, you’ve probably realized that you can use a free template for things like your logo, banner ads, website, landing pages and email campaigns. While it is a cheap option, making the decision to go with a free template could impact your business in a negative way. On the other hand, a professional designer will undoubtedly cost you more money, but the results may be much more effective. When deciding between a free template and a professional designer for your business design needs there are many things to consider. Let’s take a look:

  • Professional Look

With a free template, you may not get the clean, sharp professional look that you want to represent your company. By going with a custom design by a professional designer you will get clean, clear and concise designs that look professional and impressive to represent your company.

  • Unique Look

One major problem with using a free template is many other companies and individuals will most likely do the same thing. That means that your designs won’t be unique to you. Chances are there are several companies out there using the same templates therefore having the same look. It could even happen that a competitor (gasp) may end up with the same template as you. On the other hand, a custom design will really capture your company’s persona, giving you a look that no one else will have.

  • Uniformed Look

Chances are you won’t just want a logo for your business. You will also need a website, perhaps a banner ad or two, an email campaign and several landing pages. While you can find free templates to help you construct all of these things, they won’t be the same and you won’t be able to tweak them enough to make them have an overall uniformed look. A professional designer however, will have the ability to create all of your design materials to have the same look which will give you instant brand recognition with viewers.

  • Search Engine Friendly

For websites and web pages, search engine optimization may be one of your goals. Unfortunately free templates for websites and web pages are not made to be search engine friendly whereas working with a professional designer they can help ensure that your pages are optimized for search engine recognition.

  • Browser Compatibility

Many free templates won’t be compatible with every browser and since your don’t know what browser many of your viewers will use to view your material working with a professional designer is your best bet to getting a design that is compatible with multiple browsers.

  • Time and Energy

If you are inexperienced with design, a free template will take up a lot of your time and energy. Even then, many templates simply can’t be changed all that much meaning that even by putting plenty of time and energy into it, you may not get what you want. By the time all is said and done you might as well have hired a professional designer so you don’t have to waste time with it and you know you are getting exactly what you envisioned.

  • Spam and Viruses

When you download a free template, most of the time you will be asked to give your email address. That email address may be used to send you spam, viruses and the like for life. Not only that but you may unknowingly download a virus with the template. It may not be worth the free template if your computer is ruined. There is zero chance of this happening with a professional designer.

  • Legal Issues

Not every free template option is legit. Many times these free templates are stolen from other companies and designers. Using them even though you don’t know they are stolen could result in some legal repercussions. Again, there is zero chance of this happening with a professional designer.

There you have the facts. To get a unique, professional look that is compatible with different browsers, meets your individual needs and has no legal or other harmful repercussions, go with a custom design. Even if it costs you some money, the piece of mind and value to your company will far outlast the perk of getting a free template.

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