Please don’t get too vexed about those tiny little website design details that you really must change but your customers won’t even notice. To do so can be a world of pain and the best-selling software solutions out there usually have it covered. For example, if you need a great website slider and the best sellers (having been downloaded millions of times) don’t have that feature you want, there’s probably a good reason for it or not enough people have requested it before – both of which should make you reflect for a moment. There are always many predefined options available in any off-the-shelf software solution but if you have very specific needs that third-party software solutions still can’t accommodate and you believe that your customers demand things they’ve never seen before, then unfortunately things can quickly escalate way beyond the original budget.
Websites are like cars these days, they might all arrive in slightly different shapes and colours but they all have the same essential components so web designers bolt together our own components that have been bought off-the-shelf from reputable sources and have been tried and tested in the marketplace. That’s why so many websites look pretty similar. It hurt me greatly when I started doing the same thing because prior to that, even though I realised I was re-inventing the wheel every time, I took so much pride in offering bespoke designs and believed that the difference was clear but the truth is, doing things the old-fashioned way took so much longer and yet so few people cared about those differences or even noticed yet alone wanted to pay the difference in price. That’s when I realised ‘If you can’t change the world you should consider changing yourself’. Having a website that has some similarities to others isn’t such a bad thing – in fact, it’s great because if you have a website which feels familiar to users and easy to use without any problems it builds a users confidence and trust and might convert that user to a customer. Unfortunately it hasn’t made websites much cheaper because there is more outlay than before but the speed, quality and ‘user experience’ has improved massively.
We still need designers who want to break boundaries and create exciting designs so please carry on but just don’t use your next customers website as a testing ground or portfolio opportunity. Sell them in the usual places and let the markets decide instead.