If you're going to a human rather than building your website yourself, then there’s a huge choice of who to go with.
Going local and potentially paying more, or finding someone abroad in a country where they charge a lot less. Like anything, paying cheap might not be best and getting someone local might not be the most expensive.
This article is written for people within the UK to help them make an informed choice about having a website created for them. However, some of the principles here may apply even if you’re reading this from outside of the United Kingdom.
Having your website built abroad and what you should be aware of
Where you host your website matters
Hosting is where your website lives, think of it as your website as a guest being hosted at a party or home. Except your website is a group of files that live on a computer (called a server) which is accessed by the outside world via the internet. That's the simple explanation.
Your website will do many things, not just sit there and look pretty, It will be enabling customers to make contact with you, usually by a contact form or maybe even process transactions via an online shop.
You may have heard of GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) which means any data you or your website are handling needs to conform to these regulations. If you're processing data from people within the UK then the data needs to be kept in the UK. Your website may store or process data from customers therefore that information will be stored or processed on the server, so that server needs to be in the UK to conform to GDPR.
It’s entirely possible to have an Indian website developer work on your website hosted within the UK. So, if you’re going down the route of having someone from Asia build your site, make sure your hosting is set up here first.
Knowing where your website designer’s office is can be better for peace of mind for some. Recently a customer had a website built in Argentina and there were all sorts of issues and they were finding it difficult to get them to fix them and when they did they were very vague as to what went wrong, and how they fixed it. This isn’t to say there aren’t fabulous website developers in South America or indeed elsewhere in the world. However, having someone you can speak to face to face can make communication easier.
Getting control of your website
If you’ve had a bad experience with a website designer outside your country, it’s quite easy for them to cut off contact and disappear with your website, which you may have paid handsomely for. They won’t be subject to the same laws as within the UK as we’ve explored here with GDPR, so even though you may have supplied your text and images (which by the way you own according to our intellectual property laws), there’s not a lot the UK authorities can do if this happens.
If you’ve had your website built in the UK by a UK citizen then your chances of getting control of your website are much higher.
Will it be cheaper if I pay someone abroad?
‘Pay cheap pay twice’, or maybe you’ve heard ‘if it sounds too good to be true it probably is’. Yes we’re biased here we want to build your website for you and we’re in Constable Country in England. But we’ve also been on the receiving end of unscrupulous website designers we’ve outsourced to who's gone AWOL when something’s gone wrong with a website or replied to our email to saying the issue is fixed when it isn’t or they’ve put in what we call a kludge, meaning it works for a bit then breaks again, the chocolate teapot scenario in other words and the website goes down or fails in some way later on. Or we’ve sent them a design and what they’ve produced is nothing like it. It’s a horrible situation to be in when this is your reputation at stake. We learnt the hard way and it turned out to be more expensive to fix the issues than rebuild the site.
There are a lot of specifics to deal with when building a website, so having a first language in common seems to be an advantage. It may be that we had a few unusually bad experiences with some rogue developers outside the UK and this is by no means the norm.
With communication being key, especially if you’re not technical, you need to be able to explain what it is you want your website to do, then having someone where you have much in common not just a first language but understand each other’s culture and humour might make the process easier and prevent issues later.
Our website designers are UK based and we understand that what’s in your head can be a struggle to put into words. That’s why we think of ourselves as a sort of conduit to make real what you have in mind, and you need a bit of guidance from experienced people to achieve, if not exceed your expectations.
Do get into contact with us, we want to help and we promise not to try and sell you something you don’t need and to provide you with a website that works for your business