Very many companies including small businesses have invested in web design in Kenya. With the growth in the ICT sector in Kenya, we have experienced a better internet penetration in the country opening doors to more opportunities for businesses online.
In today’s digital world, when setting up a business, you are supposed to think of the website first. This is the face of your brand and will be the first go to place for customers to find information about you.
Building your website in Kenya is rather easy. You have several options available for you and you can have your website up and running in a matter of days. The options you are faced with when you want to build a website is to:
- Hire a web design company in Kenya
- Hire a freelance web designer
- Employ a web design expert in your company
The Difference Between Web Design and Web Development
Many people usually use the terms web design and web development interchangeably. However, there is a technical difference between the two.
In simple terms, web design focuses more on the visual aspect of the website while development deals with the functionality. What you see on the front end as the face of the website is what the designer focuses on. The layout and general look and feel of the website.
Web Developers on the other hand, are responsible for the backend of the website and how the processes function. For you to be a good web developer, you need to acquire several programming skills.
I like to look at web development as the engine of the website. What really drives the website while web design is the body of the website.
Do you Really Need a Website for your Small Business?
Let us cut to the chase. If you are in any serious business or startup, this goes without saying. For your business in Kenya to be successful, you need to have a website. There are very many benefits you will get by simply having a website.
In fact, there are many startups that have made money online simply by having a website. With a strained budget, not many startups can actually afford to have an office. Having a website is like having an office online.
Customers can be able to get information about your products and services by simply accessing your website online. The ease of access to information makes it easier to conduct business. It shortens the lifespan and makes conversion easier.
A considerable number of small businesses in Kenya do not have websites but still find ways of conducting business online. The rise in popularity of social media in Kenya has made it easier for businesses to have an online presence.
While social media is a very important avenue for targeting customers, it is risky to entirely conduct your businesses on social media. Facebook is the most popular social media network in Kenya and many businesses have created social media profiles for their brands. Other social media networks include Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube etc.
Brands have heavily invested in social media and built their profiles to have a heavy following. However, what happens when we wake up tomorrow and Facebook or Twitter decides to close shop? What happens when these social media websites go offline???
Strange as it may seem, this has happened before. Websites become popular then for some reason they decide to go offline. A simple example is Google’s own product they called KBO. The platform offered users a CMS that allowed them to design a website for their brand with a free subdomain.
However, when the time came and they decided to end the project, they did exactly that. For this reason, it is always important to invest more in your own website rather that other websites. Facebook can be a good platform to tap business, but it is not all your company/brand/organization wants.
It is absolutely important to go a mile further and design a website for your business.
What is the Real Cost of Web Design in Kenya?
Cost always seems like the elephant in the room. How much do you think it costs to design your website in Kenya? Well, the answer depends on very many dynamics. It may be as low as no cost at all if you decide to do it yourself. However, if you are not much into technology, you may want to have a budget for web design services.
The cost of web design in Kenya varies depending on who you have hired to design your website and what kind of website do you want designed.
First things first. Before even design your website, there is one thing that you need to buy first. You need to register your domain name and buy hosting space. A domain name is like an address while hosting is space that will allow you to upload your website files. Users will access your website by typing your domain name in a browser.
Domain name and hosting usually vary in pricing. Common domain names in Kenya end with .com .co.ke .or.ke .org etc. For example, you can have your domain name as fundimjanja.com or fundimjanja.co.ke. The prices for these domain names including hosting should range between Ksh 2,000 and Ksh 5,000 depending on what hosting company you are contracting for the service.
However, other domain names can be relatively expensive. It is always wise to compare different hosting companies to have an idea of what prices they can offer you. Buying a domain is easy and you can simply do it online and within a few minutes, your domain name will be active. Most web design companies in Kenya you will find also offer website hosting services. Therefore, it is important to inquire whether they offer domain and hosting within their web design packages.
After securing your domain name, we can now think about the real cost web design services. The price of a website normally varies greatly usually considering the type of website. If you hire a web design company in Kenya, the price will range between Ksh 50,000 and Ksh 500,000.
The reason for this great difference usually depends on the company designing your website and how they price their product. You will find that company A might offer you Ksh 70,000 while company B might offer you Ksh 150,000 for the same website.
While these two websites might be the same, the owner or users might have different experiences during the development stage or after launching of the website. Therefore, it is important to do your research well before settling on a particular design company in Kenya to design your website for you.
Freelance web designers in Kenya always offer cheaper options for website design in Kenya. However, most companies do not prefer to contract freelancers. They would rather deal with companies to reduce the risk.
However, Kenya is not short of talent and whatever your choice, you will definitely find the right person to design your website, if your budget is right. Do not be stingy with your budget as you may have to redesign your website several times if you make the wrong choice in the beginning.
What Next After Designing your Website?
A common mistake businesses make after designing their website is completely neglecting it. The real work starts after you design your website. There is need to maintain the website and constantly making sure that everything is working perfectly. Information has to be updated regularly so that your customers always get accurate information on your website.
Website maintenance is the reason why most companies choose to employ an IT person to always ensure that the website is in good shape. Other companies choose to outsource this to ICT or marketing companies considering this not being their core business.
I always find outsourcing to be a better deal for any company.
Another thing you need to consider after designing your website is the marketing aspect of the website. The only ways visitors will come to your website is when you market your website on different platforms. You can also choose to do this through your marketing department if you have one, or outsource your marketing needs to a company that focuses on providing online marketing services in Kenya.
There are different online marketing strategies that you can consider to drive traffic to your website. These include:
- Search Engine Optimization
- Social Media Marketing
- Content Marketing
- Email Marketing
- Affiliate Marketing
- Advertising etc
A quick search online will give you different options for any of the services you might need. The general rule of thumb is to have everything done under one roof. But, if you are not satisfied by any of the services a company provides, it always wise to move to another option.
The face of web development and website design in Kenya changes over time, just as technology does. Is there still any gray area? Let us know in the comments below, we shall be able to provide any further information concerning web design in Kenya.