Let’s say you have a great business idea and you decided to start a dating or community website. You got a dating script, installed it on your server. What is next?

Website Design.

Dating website templates provided by ready-made dating software vendors are limited. They are also not very unique. If your dating site looks the same as any other dating website, people are likely to leave being bored.

In Internet, like in the life, first impression is very important. That’s why many startups pay close attention to new design creation. So, you can do it on a budget.

Check out the following options:
1) Themeforest.net – they have a lot of low-cost (10-20 USD) templates for various websites. The only flaw is that there are not many dating website templates in there.
2) Try 99designs.com – it’s a community of designers who would be trying to make the best design for your website. It’s a competition. You have more chances to make it right. The budget is a bit higher – about $300 USD.
3) Free design templates from your dating software vendor. Some have thousands (usually from previous integrations. Means – not very unique), others – a couple of niche templates (but they are specially developed for various software purpose).
4) Templatemonster.com offers dating site design templates. Just do not take Flash based templates. They do not play on iPads.

But a lot of people still prefer to create their own design from scratch. It’s a more expensive way but it offers you completely different experience. So why would they choose custom design at the end of the day?

The answer is simple – it’s more flexible. If you have a vision of your dating web site and all you need is someone to put it into images, you are on the right way. A good designer can do miracles. With custom design you can edit elements easier, add more new items, and get exactly what you need.

It’s totally worth it only if you have a good designer. Otherwise you would probably get almost the same layouts and styles you could get ordering a ready-made dating website template. If that’s your case, just order a template, take the source code and give it to a designer you have with your adjustment requests. Works very well and saves time/money.

At the end of the day it’s up to you to decide how to treat your dating site’s design. Some people just use default design of a dating script, put their own logo and change a color scheme. And they succeed too. Sometimes startups with the best designs are never making it. Design without good marketing does nothing. So make sure you are really ready to promote your website to get more traffic. When people come to check your dating website out, a great design will definitely help to retain them on a website.

Author's Bio: 

Elena Lesnick is a project manager of Dating Pro CMS (http://www.datingpro.com/dating/) product line. She is the author of many articles about online dating business, dating software, relationships, dating news and dating site reviews. You can read her articles at http://blog.pilotgroup.net/category/pg-dating-pro/