9 Ways You Lose By Letting Blog Designers Gamble With Your Blog

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photo credit: @Doug88888

Search for ‘blog designer’ in Google and you’ll get 193 million search results.

So…finding one is quite easy.

Choosing one who is reliable, knows what they are doing and is the best one that meets your requirements and budget…much harder!

Many of my new clients come to me AFTER they have experienced bad service from other blog designers.

It really upsets me when clients have paid other blog designers to make mistakes…then I have to fix them!

And the bad service is not just those who:

  • Never deliver as promised
  • Talk technical jargon
  • Charge 3, 4…10 times too much

I’m also referring to those who ‘gamble’ with your blog like so:


They have no ‘full backup’ process in place. They may install a plugin that backs up the data but that is next to useless if you lose your whole site. Make sure they have installed a facility that backs up your whole blog not just the data. I use BackupBuddy for my clients.


They forget about the security side of building your blog. A good blog designer will install several security plugins and make numerous tweaks to the code to ensure your site is set to maximum protection.


They outsource the work. Nothing wrong with outsourcing some work but they outsource to any Tom, Dick or Harry. Suddenly, someone else has access to your site…who in a few months time could still have access to your site and hosting details and cause havoc.

Free Themes

So many of my new clients come to me as their site has been built using a ‘clunky’ and ‘hard to maintain’ free theme rather than a premium theme.

Generally, free themes are not efficient, not optimized for the search engines and not easy to maintain.

Many of them also include ‘unwanted’ links and tracking codes.

Plus any Blog Designer worth their salt would never use a free theme!

From your blog designer…insist on a premium theme being used. It makes things much easier to change and maintain. These days Headway is my first choice.

Little SEO Knowledge

Blog designers should have knowledge of the latest SEO techniques. They don’t have to be SEO experts but they should know how to optimize your blog for the search engines and also provide guidance for on-going SEO practices.


You want a fast loading blog, right?

This is another aspect many blog designers ignore.

You should insist that your blog designer makes your blog load as fast as possible.


This is another common problem my new clients have experienced. They have been using their next door neighbour’s, cousin’s friend’s hosting company that they run from under their bed.

OK…I am exaggerating but it often feels that way.

Many blog designers try and keep the hosting cheap, so you think they are doing you a good deal. Stay well clear of blog designers who say ‘A friend of mine provides a great hosting service…’. Stick to the big companies like HostGator or Bluehost.


Ass, U and Me – yes you know the saying.

I ask my clients loads of questions…I have a standard client template that I use.

I like to know exactly what they are thinking. It’s going to be their blog and therefore, their input is crucial.

Too many blog designers just assume, don’t ask questions and build your blog from another blog they have built before.

No Post-Sales Support

Ahh…one of my favourites!

If you are thinking of partnering with a blog designer…ask what their post-sales support is.

Why do I say that?

Because many charge the earth…for every small change.

Even worse…they don’t offer any support.

Any blog designer worth working with should offer at least 30 days post-sales support for free.

If you are looking for a blog designer make sure you don’t gamble with the one you choose.

What’s your experience of blog designers?

Good? Bad?

Please share your views in the comments below.

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58 Responses to 9 Ways You Lose By Letting Blog Designers Gamble With Your Blog

  1. Debbie August 22, 2012 at 12:55 pm #

    Hi Andrew,

    I am right behind Corinne when it comes to your service, It is the BEST!

    I have had experience with others when it comes to building a website or blog. you are right many of them have no clue, but are great at taking your money.

    The best think that every happen to me, was finding you. It has been like worries blowing out the window. You are always there when need and i run smooth. Just like a well mantained car.
    Thank you for the great service

    p.s. by the way when i set up my comment luv for my new blog I messed it up if you will notice.somehow I got the setup instructions for v2.2 Lite. I have no clue what i did, but I know you have the answer for me to fix it.

    • Andrew August 24, 2012 at 7:48 am #


      Thanks for those kind words – I do remember the ‘state’ your sites were in and they were charging you a fortune!!!

      I will take a look at your issue.


  2. Theodore.N August 22, 2012 at 6:30 pm #

    Hi Andrew, although i haven’t witnessed any of the above mentioned issues and don’t pray to meet one either but this is still an eye opener should in case…….

    Thanks for sharing.

    • Andrew August 23, 2012 at 12:39 am #


      Sounds like you have been treated well by whoever does your website work (perhaps it’s you!).

      This is just my experience from many of the new clients who come to me.


  3. Andrew August 23, 2012 at 12:35 am #

    Thanks, Corinne.

    I do sleep…normally well..after a hard days work!


  4. Theodore.N August 23, 2012 at 1:28 am #

    Yea, you are correct Andrew, I’ve been doing my own things. Your ebook…. Income Blogging Guide helped me when i was starting out.


    • Andrew August 24, 2012 at 7:49 am #

      Great…I’m glad the free guide helped you out!


  5. Tim Bonner August 23, 2012 at 1:31 pm #

    Hey Andrew

    I’ve not used a blog designer before. Maybe it shows ;-)!

    Some great tips though for when I do.

    Thank you for sharing.


    • Andrew August 24, 2012 at 7:53 am #


      Your site looks really good. Perhaps you should start offering ‘blogging services’!


  6. Reese August 23, 2012 at 5:18 pm #

    I am making plans to start my own blog – finally! I have been writing for other people’s blogs and websites for quite some time bow but I have not had the nerve to start my own. Thankfully, my hubby is a website developer/blog designer/internet ninja. But still, this is going to come in very handy. I am going to use most of the tips here as a checklist for him to fulfill. Thanks!

    • Andrew August 24, 2012 at 7:55 am #


      ‘not had the nerve to start my own’ and ‘my hubby is a website developer/blog designer/internet ninja’ doesn’t seem to go together!

      Why have you got the nerve?


  7. Simmeon August 24, 2012 at 3:55 am #

    It’s wise to really do your homework and research about which blog designers or theme companies really know how to deliver a design without comprising peformance and the rest.

    • Andrew August 26, 2012 at 2:12 am #


      What ‘homework’ and ‘research’ would you do?


  8. Faissal Alhaithami August 24, 2012 at 5:27 am #

    Choosing the perfect blog designer is never an easy job. I think it’s best to ask for recommendations from your friends or colleagues before you decide to work with a designer. A wrong selection can really do a lot of damage to you site. So, you must tread with extreme care.

    Thanks for discussing all these useful tips.

    • Andrew August 24, 2012 at 7:56 am #


      I agree – recommendation is the way.

      Most of my new clients come from recommendations.


  9. Sanjib Saha August 24, 2012 at 7:19 am #

    Hi Andrew,

    A post written after a lot of research done. I am really delighted to read this. I completely agree with all the points you have mentioned here. It is really annoying to find out that your blog looks atrocious after the designing is done. More so because, you must have spent a good amount on it only expecting to see a better blog. It really is a gamble. To avoid any such embarrassments, it is better for you to sit with designer and explain what you would like to see in your blog.


    • Andrew August 24, 2012 at 7:57 am #


      It’s not just what you see…it’s also what’s in the engine!


  10. Steven Papas August 24, 2012 at 11:10 am #

    Hi Andrew. This is true not only with designers but with SEO specialists, as well. I had once made the mistake to give some “SEO specialists” the responsibility to promote my website, but after 3 months Penguin slapped me hard because of the unnatural way they were promoting it.

    • Andrew August 26, 2012 at 2:13 am #


      Great point. I have a number of new clients who have suffered as a result of Penguin.


  11. Jon August 24, 2012 at 2:53 pm #

    Haha this was a wonderful read! Seriously, at almost every point I had a flashback to a time I was in a similar situation. Honestly, there have been times where making ‘minor adjustments’ to a pre-made or free theme has been way worse than building something from scratch.

    • Andrew August 26, 2012 at 2:14 am #


      At least you are now looking back and laughing! That’s a great sign to say you have ‘moved on’!


  12. Amit Shaw August 27, 2012 at 3:55 am #

    Hi Andrew,

    A great lesson to learn. Whatever happens with the designing for blogs, it is our responsibility to realize the relevance. We need to chalk out our guidelines first and then direct the designer. They are not to blame completely. They just do the job but we must know what we want it instead of cribbing about it later.


    • Andrew September 6, 2012 at 11:38 pm #


      Not all clients can do that. I have many who come to me who simply don’t know what they want. They need my experience in design/layout.


  13. Steven Papas August 27, 2012 at 9:17 pm #

    Hello Andrew,

    To make a blog perfect,every owner try their best. But sometimes all their effort goes in vain.Nice post by the way.

  14. Nick Stamoulis August 29, 2012 at 6:44 am #

    A blog is a very important part of an online marketing strategy. You don’t want to be cheap when it comes to developing and maintaining your blog. It’s worth paying more for a designer that understands SEO and for the blog to be hosted by a legitimate company. You don’t want your blog to be down for any extended period of time.

    • Andrew September 6, 2012 at 11:40 pm #


      Very true!

      Unfortunately, very few take that approach.

      They THINK they can create a ‘good enough’ blog but we know ‘good enough’ is no longer good enough!


  15. Robert September 4, 2012 at 8:52 am #

    This post reminds me of my case a year ago. I paid around 500 bucks to get a custom design based on a premium theme. The result is terrible. When I tried to contact the designer, he ignored me and left me alone. After that, I learn some basic customizations myself and never wanna hire a designer again.

    • Andrew September 6, 2012 at 11:42 pm #


      I can understand how you feel. It sounds like the expereince you’ve had has put you off for life….don’t allow that.

      There are some excellent designers about!


  16. Andrew September 4, 2012 at 9:32 pm #

    Designing a blog from a newbie can be disastrous in a way that you mentioned above. I have had clients who are also victim of poor services and the common problems are loading speed, cheap hosting, SEO and security. In most cases I feel repairing is difficult than building a new one. Thanks for sharing the facts Andrew.

    • Andrew September 6, 2012 at 11:44 pm #


      Yes I agree…repairing is more difficult than building a new one. I often feel like that!


  17. Felicia September 5, 2012 at 2:51 am #

    Hi Andrew,
    As a blogger for the past 5 years, I learned the ups and downs of designing and maintaining a blog, and seeing that it is more profitable to have multiple niche blogs, the number or blogs I manage and maintain grows by 2 to 3 blogs each year. I know I am not a professional weblog designer or design weblogs for a living, but when my friends asks me for help in designing their blogs, I usually apply all the things I have learned when opening, creating, and maintaining websites, this includes adding the plugins that are very useful and beneficial, especially the ones involving security and backup matters. With that said, I do not understand why other web designers do things very poorly and not even make any effort in making the site as if they were designing their own site. This is what they do for a living and it’s not like the weblog they are designing will be competing with them, so they should at least give some effort to it. Otherwise, they are just in for the money and not in really helping their clients. On the other hand, after reading many of your posts, it is safe to assume that you are different as you are more into customer satisfaction. Kudos!

    • Andrew September 6, 2012 at 11:49 pm #


      I think is just come down to customer service.

      Some web designers are excellent…some not so.

      In this competitive world, we need to provide the best service we can. Repeat business is what I strive for and only get that by providing great customer service.


      • Felicia September 14, 2012 at 12:33 am #

        Hi Andrew,
        In the world of business, repeat customers are the best thing. It not only shows they are satisfied with your product, but with your customer service as well.

  18. Justin Tuttle September 5, 2012 at 4:49 am #

    Since I am a chiropractor I don’t know a thing about this but I really want to learn and probably imply this somehow.

    • Andrew September 6, 2012 at 11:50 pm #


      So what is the first action you will be taking as a result?


  19. petpost September 6, 2012 at 5:04 am #

    This is true not only with designers but with SEO specialists, as well. I had once made the mistake to give some “SEO specialists” the responsibility to promote my website, but after 3 months Penguin slapped me hard because of the unnatural way they were promoting it.thanks for.

    • Andrew September 6, 2012 at 11:51 pm #

      Well…hopefully you have learned from your experience?

      Was the seo company recommended?


  20. Sean September 6, 2012 at 10:41 pm #


    I know nothing about web building but I have a website. I was recommended a web designer, by a friend, to set my website up.

    It worked out well. Having a recommendation helps.


    • Andrew September 6, 2012 at 11:59 pm #


      I agree – having a recommendation really helps and keeps the stress levels down!


  21. Theresia Arnette September 10, 2012 at 9:26 am #

    Hello, thank you for this blog. I have been looking for someone to design my blog so I am extremely glad I came across this. I want someone who will listen to what I say and will put time and effort into making it. I have had friends who have paid a lot of money and have been disappointed with the results, so I do want to experience the same thing.

    • Andrew September 25, 2012 at 9:00 am #


      Have you found someone who can meet your expectations?


  22. Vijayraj Reddy September 12, 2012 at 3:21 am #

    Hi Andrew,

    Designing of blogs with the assistance of professionals is common these days. As you have said above, it is really hurtful to realize that your money has gone waste after you have invested for a purpose.You need to carry out a research before you outsource the task to someone. You need to verify the credentials and testimonials before finalizing a resource.


    • Andrew September 25, 2012 at 9:01 am #


      Agree…a recommendation from someone is always a good start.


  23. Md Firdosh September 12, 2012 at 6:04 am #

    wow these are really some reasons due to which any one can loos his/ her blog. Very useful tips for new bloggers.

  24. Lee September 13, 2012 at 6:52 am #

    Hi your piece on the speed your blog loads. I had trouble once I started adding some pictures. It seemed to slow everything down. I was reading about different formats is jpeg the best format for images to load or is there another that will help them load faster????? I have taken them back off for now until I get it right. I don’t want to lose visitors before the pages are even loaded.

    Thanks lee

    • Andrew September 25, 2012 at 9:03 am #


      jpeg is fine. It comes down to the size of the image file. The higher the quality, the higher the size and the slower the loading speed.

      Use something like Ifranview and/or wp-smush-it to optimize your images.


  25. Justin Tuttle September 17, 2012 at 11:54 pm #

    What if you don’t know much about stuffs like this because it is not in your profession? Like I do, because I am a chiropractor.

    I am always just putting my trust on the designer and gamble with their skills and knowledge.

    • Andrew September 25, 2012 at 9:04 am #


      Then you have to find someone you can trust. A good start is to ask your friends for any recommendations.


  26. Gary September 24, 2012 at 5:26 pm #

    I have ran into some really bad ones, and also have had some amazing ones. I have a few websites which I think were done perfectly. The customer supper was amazing as well. I am not going to mention any names, but whenever I need a blog done again this is who I will go to. I also have created another blog here recently. He is going to be redoing it as well. I have been through my fair share of people who claim they know what they are doing. I am just glad I finally found a good one that I can call on at any time.

    Thanks for the blog posts. It really did hit home.

    • Andrew September 25, 2012 at 9:05 am #


      Sounds like you have a found your pefect ‘blog buildier’ match.

      That’s great.


      • Gary September 26, 2012 at 3:12 am #

        Yes, I have for now. But that is not to say I did not go through the mess you are talking about. I went through years of going between different people before I found a quality one who can deliver every time. Also, I will recommend you though, if I find someone else who needs some quality work done. :]

        • Andrew September 27, 2012 at 12:49 am #


          Yep…very frustrating!

          That’s kind of you to recommend my work – thanks.


  27. Mani Viswanathan September 25, 2012 at 5:06 am #

    Being a designer, I do agree with the points made in the post. Designers should provide some minor changes after the main design is done and made live. Although, some clients demand too many changes, which obviously isn’t possible to be done for free.

    • Andrew September 25, 2012 at 9:06 am #


      So what do you do when a client demand too many changes?


  28. Jyothis Thaliath September 25, 2012 at 7:21 am #

    I must agree with you Andrew 🙂
    My view is that Designwork is like icebergs underwater part mostly hidden from your eyes. I suppose 99% of designers work won’t be visible/understandable for untrained eye. It’s exactly like I would watch beautiful marble sculpture and have no idea how to make one on my own 🙁

  29. ChangeYourLife.net October 20, 2012 at 8:04 pm #

    It’s so crucial to find the right people to work with. Ongoing support is vital as well as the initial design.

  30. Lee February 2, 2013 at 8:16 am #

    Hi Andrew
    Since I left a comment a while ago I have set up another blog and it uses a lot of images and I am trying to keep them under control but I have numourous on each page and they really do still seem to slow down hythe loading I have tried speeding it up but still seems slow to me. Will give Ifranview a go to help optimise them and see if that helps.

    Thanks again lee

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