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I need a Web site. Should I build it myself or hire someone?

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Internet in Business mentor Bradley Feld responds to the following question from an inc.com reader:
I am starting a non-Web-based business but wanted to develop a Web site on which to sell my services. I took a six-hour HTMLcourse and a similar Dreamweaver course. I feel very comfortable usingcomputers, but I'm finding the do-it-yourself approach tougher than I anticipated. Do you have any advice? What about having a professional do it?Should I use someone local, or does that matter? (I'm in St. Louis.)

Bradley Feld responds: Building a professional Web site is a significant undertaking. You havethree choices:

  1. Do it yourself.
  2. Hire a local consultant.
  3. Hire a consulting firm.

Your budget will dictate which one you choose. Option 1 is the least expensive,option 3 is the most expensive.

If you choose to develop your own site, you may want to consider software such as Trellix* that can help with the site creation process.If you hire a local consultant, consider hiring high school or collegestudents who know how to design Web sites -- they will likely provide valueabove their cost.It's always better to hire a consultant close to home for small- to medium-size projects, so unless you are developing a huge, complex Web site, I recommendthat you pick a consultant nearby.

*Note: Trellix Corp. recently signed a distribution agreement with WebProvider, a subsidiary of Interliant Inc. Bradley Feld is the cofounder of Interliant.

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