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Why Semi-Custom Websites are a Game Changer for Small Businesses

Investing in a custom WordPress website can turn into an intense process that requires a considerable financial investment and can take months to complete. And yet, building your site from a premade template can feel incomplete and cookie-cutter when you’re ready to stand out in the sea of competition. So, which solution should small business owners turn to when it’s time to create a new website?


Semi-Custom Websites

Enter semi-custom websites! These are a signature service at Southern Creative, and we’ve found they’re the perfect solution for small business owners who want the freedom of WordPress website customization without the hassle and expense of going fully custom. Oh, and did I mention they can be online in as little as one week? Having a highly effective website doesn’t mean that you need something that has never been seen before!

After working with dozens of clients to create tailor-made WordPress websites, I realized that there are so many small business owners who need a scroll-stopping, strategic, streamlined website for their brand – but they don’t necessarily need an entirely custom site. 

Semi-custom websites are a fabulous way to balance proven marketing strategy with personalized branding. That way, you get all the best aspects of fully custom design and ready-made themes. 


Custom website vs. template

When most people think about launching a WordPress website, two options come to mind: custom websites or templates. A custom website is designed completely from scratch by a designer and/or developer to meet your unique website needs. This option is ideal for well-established large businesses, complicated website projects, or clients who need highly customized solutions. 


Templates are premade design packages that are a helpful shortcut for installing a cohesive design onto your website. They’re at the opposite end of the website-building spectrum, offering a simple solution to get a WordPress website online in just a few hours. All you have to do is purchase the theme and templates of your choice, upload them into WordPress, and modify the site with your information. Templates are useful for people who need a website online immediately, are working on a limited budget, or aren’t ready to invest in a custom website design. However, if you use a template straight out of the box, it won’t feel unique to your brand. After all, anyone else could buy the same template and use it for their website!


What are semi-custom websites?

Semi-custom websites are a hybrid option that combines the best of custom websites and templates. Even though a designer starts with a theme and templates, they’re able to make practical design tweaks and personalize everything to fit your brand and your ideal client. The end result is a website that looks like it was built just for you, without the time and expense of investing in a custom-built website.


At Southern Creative, we’ve taken this a step further by crafting our own in-house website templates for clients to choose from. We’ve created each template with service-based business owners in mind, packing them with a marketing strategy that converts – and they’re exclusive to our Launch Week and One Page Website clients.

One Page Semi Custom Website By Southern Creative For Midst Of Motherhood
Semi-custom website by southern creative for midst of motherhood
One Page Semi Custom Website By Southern Creative
Semi-custom website by southern creative for olive and vine socials

Should I invest in WordPress website customization?

If you want a website that doesn’t look exactly like a never-before-seen website, then you should! With semi-custom WordPress websites, it’s possible to get the website customization you need to stand out without going all-in on a custom build. 


What really matters for your brand website

Fun fact: I actually used to focus exclusively on building fully custom websites. While that offered our clients quite a bit of flexibility when it came to the design and function of their sites, I started to notice a trend. For many of our clients, the number one website goal was boosting brand visibility and attracting new clients. 


And while custom websites are a must for anyone who needs one-of-a-kind functionality built into their site, that’s not what will drive organic site traffic and get you in front of more potential clients. If organic traffic and conversion are what you’re reaching for, then SEO optimization and user experience actually play a larger role in your success!


Of course, you could start ranking on Google with an unmodified template, but personalized branding is still key for building brand know, like, and trust. That’s why we don’t do cookie-cutter template solutions. We start with our exclusive in-house templates, then customize sites according to each client’s one-of-a-kind branding and goals. 


Scaling back from the custom approach allows us to focus on SEO that drives traffic and a marketing strategy that converts, all at a more affordable price than building a site from scratch.


Ready for a strategic website that converts? 

Book a call now to chat about your goals and build a brand-aligned semi-custom website in as little as one week! 


Want to know if you should go with a semi-custom website vs. a template? Take our online quiz! Just answer a few questions, and we’ll send our recommendation straight to your email.


Steph O'Keefe, SEO strategist and WordPress designer sitting at desk wearing a white shirt in Raleigh, NC.

I'm Steph!

I'm the Founder and creative Director behind Southern Creative, a.k.a. your SEO strategist and web designer.

My passion is crafting websites rooted in strategy so you can put your focus where your heart is while we launch your dream website that shows up online.