Many small / local businesses build their own websites or hire a friend / relative to build and maintain their site for them due to budgetary restrictions. And this is ok... most of the time. However, there are a few basic guidelines you should remember when designing your own site without the help of a seasoned professional.
Knowing that budgets are always tight if you're not going to have a professional build your site you may want to consider hiring someone to conduct a site audit and provide an objective opinion on how to improve your site. Besides you'll want a non-biased opinion.
Sites like www.elance.com are a great resource to find reasonably priced professionals to conduct an audit.
After years of seeing awful local marketing on cable TV, on the streets, and online I've decided it's time to do something about it.