We humans have a tendency to pass up our control to those who have more knowledge in certain areas: Doctors, dentists, accountants, and web designers.
Although we don’t need to know how to do the surgery, we should have a basic understanding about how the process will go.
The same is true with our web sites. You need to have a basic understanding of the web site structure and its purpose. It’s up to you to set goals for your web site and up to your designer to create a site that will help you achieve those goals. Otherwise, how will you know if it’s a success? Take control of your web site!
We wouldn’t allow a dentist to put fillings in our mouth if he continues to own the metal afterwards. Use the same good judgement for websites.
Your domain name and your hosting should be something YOU own. Ensure the domain name is registered in YOUR name. The hosting account you use should be accessible for any web designer to access. Do you have access to your site and all the content should something happen to your web designer? I don’t want to be morbid but you need to be prepared for any possibility. Your web site is important to your business.
Would you pay an accountant to handle all your receipts if money was tight and you could organize them yourself?
If you are a small business, it might make sense for you to have access to your site to make minor changes and add content. At least until you have room in your budget for someone to do it for you. There are sites, such as WordPress, that make it easier for business owners to do this.
That said, if developing a first page presence on the search engines is important to you, I recommend staying away from “out of the box” template or brokerage web sites. It’s too difficult for you to differentiate yourself when your site and content mirrors hundreds, if not thousands, of your competitors.
If you’re finding this series on web design interesting, you may want to download my report, “Avoid the 7 Most Costly Web Design Mistakes.” Reading it will save you thousands in dollars because you’ll have the knowledge to know what to consider.