5 Myths About Websites

Websites are relatively new in the business world and people often have misconceptions about what it really takes to create, own, and run a website. Below are some common myths I run into fairly frequently.

I have a website; it should be the first item on Google

“My website went live yesterday and it’s still not on the top of Google.” I get this concern a lot. It’s a common misconception that simply having a website puts you at the top of the search engine results. Search engine optimization is a key part of having and running a successful website and it’s a lot of work. It requires consistent and frequent updating (for which a blog is important), properly placed meta tags and keywords, and 200 various other things; it can be a full time job in itself. It’s important to remember that your website isn’t going to reach top rank unless you work at it; simply owning a website does not automatically ensure any specific placement in Google’s results.

My website is for me

“I don’t like red, so my website can’t be red.” This is another fairly common occurrence. Unless your website is a personal blog which isn’t meant for the general public’s use, your website probably isn’t for you; it’s for your customer. So it’s important to remember that, while your design opinions are relevant in the conception of your website, they are not the most important thing. You should be designing for your user. It sounds harsh, but your website isn’t for your use so it shouldn’t be designed for you. For instance, my my personal blog is designed and built for my use only; I’m not trying to sell anything to anyone. EllyCallison.com, however, is designed and built for my audience and so there are elements in the design that I might not necessary need or use, but my customer (you) will.

I have a content management system so I never have to look at code

I like to remind my clients several times throughout the process of putting their website together that this will be a website and therefore they will have to look at code. There is a common misconception that content management systems remove the necessity to look at and/or use code. This is so close to the truth, but not quite the whole truth. In reality, content management systems reduce the amount of code you’ll have to look at by assuming various tag usages. For instance, everything I type into a WordPress page editor is assumed to be a paragraph unless I tell it to use a different tag. Most common tags are featured in a handy drop down list and I can simply apply them to various text items. However, if I wanted to create a border around some text, I would need to write some custom code; it wouldn’t be complicated, but I would need to specify the exact code I’d want executed. So it’s important to remember that your content management system will reduce the amount of code you’ll have to look at, but it won’t eradicate it.

My website will run itself; I don’t have to touch it

Your website is not a self-sustaining entity. If you leave your website untouched, chances are it’s going to fall into the web-abyss. Like the first myth mentions, you’ll need to update your website periodically to ensure your website is optimized effectively. Furthermore, you’ll probably want to keep up with various updates to your site to continue making your website better and more informative for your users, which will, with any luck, ultimately bring in more revenue. Things go wrong with websites, servers go down, and people have questions about various items, so be sure to check in periodically to ensure things are still running smoothly.

Websites are cheap and easy to make

I could go on forever about this particular myth, so I will try to keep this brief. People, in particular those who have never created, owned, or built a website, tend to assume that because their cousin can make a website, websites are therefore easy to make and should be inexpensive. Firstly, websites are intricately designed and built tools for business (in most cases). They require hours and hours and hours of work if done properly. As an example, Bridge Resolution Group took nearly 20 hours to design and about 25 hours to develop; this is a fairly simple and standard website. It utilizes PHP, CSS, HTML and jQuery to function properly. And because I am familiar with these languages, this would be considered an “easy” website for me, but I have extensive experience and therefore, the term “easy” is in the eye of the beholder. And so by those standards, an “easy to make” website takes me about 50 hours to complete from start to finish. Consider what you might charge for 50 hours of your time.


As time progresses and people become more familiar with websites and the general web-world, these myths will slowly disappear and be replaced with other myths. But for now, it’s important to remember that your website is a living entity that requires constant care and updating to be an effective business tool. It should be geared towards your audience and it will most likely cost you a pretty penny to do it right. If you go into your website project with this understanding, you’re destined to have a great and successful website.

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