In my experience, there are two broad categories.
The first category of people have offline businesses i.e brick and mortar businesses who want to use the Internet to advertise their services and products. They want the website as part of their marketing mix.
The mainstay of their income is generated from clients that they deal with in the “real world” and a website is just another advertising avenue and a vehicle for communicating with your clients and generating leads for your business. It is supplemental to your existing business.
The second category consist of people who want their website to become the main income stream. In other words, they want to sell and market a product or service via the website almost exclusively with no other or very few other marketing chanels. The website becomes the principle vehicle for generating income and without the website there is no other means of obtaining leads / customers and making sales.
In the first category, the website is supplemental to the existing business and serves to enhance the existing business and serve as an additional marketing channel. You do not have the time or inclination to do it yourself.
In the second category the website IS the business. Without the website there is no business.
If you fall in the first category then you are better of outsourcing your website to someone like myself as your website will be only part of what your business entails and you don’t need to learn all the in’s and out’s of designing a website. Hire a website designer as your time is much better spent somewhere else. If you are on a small budget and if you want more control over your website you can also look at my special page for a solution that may work for you (perfect for small business owners who want more control over their website).
But, if you fall in the second category, you better learn to build and market your website yourself. I can do it for you, but trust me, it is going to cost you more long term and you are going to need to constantly improve and tweak your website for your own industry and you will need to constantly monitor and work on your website. You are going to want hand’s on control over your website.
I own many websites where the website is the business. I make my living exclusively online and I would be frustrated to death if I had to have a website designer build my websites for me. The biggest thing would be that I would never make money as I would have to constantly pay someone else to make changes for me.
If you are in the second category, i.e you want to sell an ebook, become an affiliate, run an ecommerce website, publish a newsletter etc, have a look at my special. It is going to be your most cost effective solution to running a business on the Internet in the long run and will give you the biggest chance of success.