Having a professional WordPress website created
Written by Finn Ruijter, 25 March 2021

5 choices for getting a new website built: a beginner’s guide

Getting a new site built doesn’t happen overnight. Once you’ve made the decision to go for a new website, the dilemmas really begin. I’ll walk you through the 5 most important choices you’re guaranteed to make in the process toward a new website.

If you want to have a new website built, you’ve probably already made your own wish list. You may already have an idea of what the corporate identity should look like or what functionalities the website should have. But then how to proceed? Ask yourself the following 5 questions to ultimately choose between different Internet agencies.

  • What platform do you want to use?
  • To what extent do you need customization?
  • What is your budget?
  • Which provider suits you?
  • What approach do you want to go for?


A website or web shop can be built on many different platforms. When you want a new Web site built, chances are you are considering several systems. What is the right choice depends entirely on your current situation and wish list.

Most web shops run on WooCommerce (part of WordPress), Shopify, Magento or Contao. Some examples of content management systems (CMS) for websites include WordPress, Drupal, Joomla, Craft, Sitecore, Umbraco, TYPO3 and Sitefinity.

Some of the factors that distinguish platforms from one another:

What programming language lies at the base under the platform?

Each platform has a programming language as its basis. The programming language is the language in which the commands for a computer are written out. Web developers use one of those languages to develop a Web site. You choose a programming language based on the purpose of the website.

WordPress, for example, runs on PHP. You’ve probably heard of WordPress before; this is the most widely used platform. Around 40% of all websites worldwide run on WordPress. This is not to say that WordPress is automatically the right choice for every business. Get advice and make a choice based on your requirements and wishes.

If you want to integrate a Web site with Microsoft systems, .NET gives you an edge. If you focus more on Android mobile applications, then you can choose Java. If a lot of backend work is applied, for data science for example, then even the new language Python can be chosen. So a lot is possible; ask an expert for help.

What are the licensing costs of the platform?

Licensing costs for each platform can vary quite a bit. A license is a permit to use a particular computer program. You can buy different types of licenses: each platform offers its own service package. Thus, costs are determined according to the user’s rights. Logically, a comprehensive package entails higher costs. Whether you have to pay licensing fees to use the software depends on whether the platform is open or closed source.

Is the platform open or closed source?

With an open source platform, you can copy the source code to a new site in the future. Using the software is often free, and you only pay for implementation and maintenance costs at an Internet agency. The biggest advantage of an open source platform, is that a large group of people have access to co-develop the platform. An open source platform therefore grows with developments in the technical online world.

With a closed-source platform, you pay a one-time license fee to use the software. Then you pay an annual fee for updates, maintenance and support.

Are you limited to customization or are standard solutions available?

You can have a website built by custom solutions or with standard themes and plug-ins. A combination is also possible: it just depends on what you are looking for. WordPress is one of the few platforms that widely offers free plug-ins and themes. Most platforms only work with good customization. This is where an Internet agency comes in.

Need help choosing the right CMS? Download our CMS selection guide for free!

Standard or customization

Depending on the platform, a website can be created with a standard theme, or through customization. If you only use a default theme, you can actually install and configure it yourself. You don’t need an Internet agency for that. Such a standard theme is cheaper than customization: you will work on it independently.

A standard solution is cheaper, but what we often see is that it is not enough to make a professional website work properly. In fact, standard themes do not offer solutions for speed, stability and security. Also, using these templates is less future-proof – it may not fit your long-term vision. So all in all, the options are limited.

Having a custom website built can be in your own house style, matching your online marketing goals. It is completely unique. In addition, in terms of stability, management, privacy, loading speed, security and digital accessibility, customization is often required to build a professional website.

All in all, we recommend including both standard and custom solutions in your decision. A mix of the two is also possible. Again, ask a specialist for help.

Save costs

Before you start requesting quotes from potential partners, it is helpful to have an idea of what your budget is. It is often difficult to determine what is a reasonable amount. Therefore, consider how much value you place on online and what it can bring to the company. Often that’s more than you think. Not only do you have a nice business card, but a well-functioning website attracts relevant visitors from which you can generate more sales.

Also, a new website is cost-saving because, for example, it reduces pressure on customer service. For example, a professional website allows employees to work more efficiently. The website is the tool for marketers and serves departments such as Sales and HR. This way you save on sales and recruiting costs.

Budget indication

You can create a budget indication using a percentage of sales. The percentage you spend on the website and all other marketing activities combined should be in proportion. That’s how to get the most out of an investment.

Every six months since 2008, U.S. marketing executives have been questioned about their marketing budgets in the CMO Survey. They are also asked how the marketing budget compares to the company’s overall budget. The results show that the percentage for the marketing budget has hovered around 11% for years, among both B2B and B2C companies. The latest figures from February 20 21 show that the marketing budget as a percentage of revenue is 13.2%.

If you find it difficult to make a budget indication, set the marketing budget at about 8-10% of sales. Then on average you are in the right place. Remember: the marketing budget is not just about online marketing efforts, but also offline marketing such as brochures or events.

Want to know more about website costs? Download the white paper “what does a website cost?” for free.


The online world is constantly changing. That presents opportunities for new Internet agencies. But remember: the longer an agency has been around, the more changes and techniques the specialists have gone through. Such an agency still exists thanks to creativity and adaptability. So that also increases the chances that such an agency will still exist in the future when you need support for your new website.

In addition, you want a partner who has the time to help you with questions or problems. Transparency and direct contact is important here. For example, for an initial introduction, check how quickly you get a response back. If it takes days to respond to your first rapprochement, that’s a bad omen.

Want to be convinced of a party’s professionalism? Customer reviews can tell you a lot. Check (online) reviews and look for case studies of the company. This will give you an idea of the previous companies a provider has worked with as well as read the honest opinions of previous clients.

Use our review matrix to select the right internet agency for you!


Having a website built is often a process that takes several months. At that time, it is nice to work in a way that appeals to you. Each company works with a different approach. Choose the methodology that best suits the company.

Common methods include Agile, Scrum and Waterfall. We briefly explain these.

Waterfall method

In the waterfall method, all requirements are first identified before a team of specialists begins. In this method, the development of a website goes through a number of stages. It provides a concrete approach to the complete project. This is how you start with the analysis. Next comes a basic design, a technical design, its development, the testing phase, migration and finally going live. Once the website has gone live, you enter the management and maintenance phase. For each phase, it is clear what needs to be done and project managers monitor progress.

Agile method

The agile method is a belief that ensures a company operates flexibly. Work is done independently from small, self-managing teams. The teams interact with each other so that, during the process, the requirements and wishes for the new website become clear. As a result, the overall duration of the project is shorter and less administration is required. The client is also heavily involved throughout the process.

Scrum method

The scrum method falls under the Agile method. This is a flexible way of development. Within a multidisciplinary team, we work on a project in short sprints of 1 to 4 weeks. This team consists of a product owner, scrum master and the developers. Cooperation is very important and there is continuous consultation. Changes can therefore be made quickly in this method, as ongoing feedback is possible. The project is broken down into small, manageable steps and errors are detected more quickly.

We further explain the pros and cons of each method in the free white paper: approach and method of internet agencies.

What happens after going live?

Once a website goes live, you will need to keep working on it. After all, a website is never finished. Therefore, when choosing the right provider, it is wise to consider what the follow-up process looks like. For example, there are web builders who only develop the website and do not offer a follow-up process. But there are also partners who implement optimizations, for example, through a stripe card. In that case, you indicate yourself when you have a question or problem. Another method is active further development. This is an active collaboration in which both parties contribute ideas for improving the website. This way, you keep optimizing the website as you go along and build online marketing.

For all choices, there is no right or wrong option. If you are going to have a new website built, look at your own requirements. It is important to consider what fits the company, its current situation and its vision for the future. Write a website brief and base the choice on professional advice.