Monday, September 17, 2007

Working with Web Site Templates

The quickest way to get your own site online is to use a web site template. You will find however that these come in varying qualities.

You basically have a choice of free or premium templates and the difference in quality can be extreme.

Free templates

Carrying out a quick search for 'free web site templates' in Google returns over 129 million results. It is important to realise however, that almost any template you get for free is either going to be very amateurish or there will probably be some annoying conditions of use. These may include having to link back to the designer's web page from your site, adverts that you cannot delete or restrictions such as not being able to use the design commercially.

If you're really set on getting a free template however, a better way of doing it is to use the ones that come free say, from your hosting provider or HTML editing program. Alternatively you could look at the world of blogs. WordPress for instance, has some very good looking, functional templates.

One last point – do not expect to have a unique site if you use free templates. There are likely to be literally hundreds of other sites online that found the same free template that you did.

Premium templates

Things start to look up when you investigate the realm of premium templates. The idea behind these is that a team of professional designers are paid to produce quality templates that are sold many times over thus enabling the supplier to offer them at a low cost. Much like you would buy wallpaper.

This has benefits for both customers and designers alike. Designers can do what they do best – designing good looking web site templates and not have the distraction of dealing directly with customers. Customers on the other hand get a professionally designed site, speedy service, can see the goods straight away and don’t have to pay expensive daily rates for unique designs. In fact most template shops offer instant download following purchase.

The only drawback from the customers point of view is that their particular design will not be unique, although in practice, this isn’t really a problem due to the sheer number of sites on the web.

Exclusive Templates

If you really want exclusivity most resellers will offer you a separate price to purchase the template as a unique design. Once sold to you the template is immediately withdrawn from sale.

The best template shops offer you a bespoke design service. This typically takes the form of buying one of their templates on a regular or exclusive basis following which you can ask their designers to make alterations to the template. This is to tailor it more to your specific needs which also has the desirable effect of achieving exclusivity at the same time. This is a very cost effective method of web site design.

Author of this article is Trevor Sadowski. Trevor has been building web sites for a couple of years now and has tried various methods to speed up the process. In order to help others Trevor has created a site that offers help and advice on how to build a web site as well as offering free and premium templates of the best quality, free graphics, buttons and other web site components.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Interesting. Thanks for the article.

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Web 2.0 Templates