I made the plunge a few weeks ago and decided to finally do it: get my website designed for me.
You may say, "Don't you know how to design websites, Nicole, I mean you work for a web company!" Here's the thing. I have no design experience. (Why do you think I'm using a template that came with Typepad?) I create the content, folks. I write, podcast, edit video… I don't do cms or know how to use a frame. (I only know these things exist and can use them in a sentence to sound smart).
As far as design, I know what I like, but not exactly what I want. In short, I'm a nightmare client.
I'm paying the company I work for to design the website for me for several reasons:
1) They do a great job. I've seen the thought my coworkers put into other people's designs and I want a product like they put out. Plus they understand me and my blog pretty well from our daily interations.
2) They're affordable. My custom designed Joomla! site is going to run me about $1,000, which is a reasonable rate from what I've seen.
3) I may not be able to design a nice-looking site from the ground up by I can sure mess with a created site. Since I work with Joomla on our newspaper sites, I have an idea of what can be done with my site.
4) Having my own site will teach me a lot of the web stuff I've been avoiding… but not having to set it up takes a lot of it off my mind.
5) Free software means nothing I have to buy… though I did order a $20 Joomla! book to teach me a little more.
Anyway, so if you know anything about websites or Joomla! (I'm going with version 1.5 for you computer types), if you can think of things I should include when I'm thinking about all this, please comment or email me. Suggestions from others are so helpful when you are doing something like this!
And don't worry, I'll try not to turn into more of a nerd then I already am.