As a small business owner, it’s more important than ever before to have an online presence. A quality, user-friendly website is invaluable in today’s competitive marketplace.
While countless do-it-yourself website builders are available to use, these aren’t going to provide the superior results you need to ensure your site and business stand out from the competition. A better option is to hire a professional website designer.
When choosing a website designer, be sure to use the tips and information below to find the right company or person for the job.
1. Get to Know the Options
The first step is to figure out what options you have in the local area. To narrow down website design companies, consider:
- Extensiveness of your project
- Number of pages needed
- Special features requirements
- SEO and copywriting
- Websites you like
After you have answered these questions, you can begin exploring your options. Be sure to check out the portfolios of the companies you are considering.
2. Figure Out the Type of Website You Want
What type of function do you want your website to have? For example, do you want a “brochure site” which features your basic information?
Or do you want something with a certain level of functionality?
It’s important to determine this because it will help you choose a web developer or designer. You can learn more about design options here.
3. Consider Industry Knowledge
You should consider if the web designer you are considering has experience designing sites for businesses in your industry.
You can usually find this type of information by checking out the company’s blog or even YouTube channel. Other sources of information include if they have been a guest on a podcast or even published in a reputable journal or publication.
Along with web design, make sure you hire someone who is also up to date on other web design things, such as email marketing, SEO best practices, and more.
4. The Cost of Web Design Services
One of the most important factors will be the cost of the services needed for most business owners. Take some time to find a company that offers reasonable prices for their services.
It is a good idea to compare costs, which will help you find the company that offers the most value and skills. In the long run, finding this web designer is going to pay off.
5. Find a Company That Will Discuss Your Needs
Every company you consider will schedule an initial meeting to determine your goals and figure out what type of website you want. During this meeting, you will also likely discuss costs and budgets.
This is standard practice.
However, while the first meeting is going on, there are a few things you need to look for and consider.
It’s important to find a company that appreciates and acknowledges your expertise. After all, you know what you are trying to sell and have a general idea of how to present it to potential customers.
No one is more familiar with your business than you. If the website design company doesn’t recognize this and will not listen to your ideas, it is not the company you should hire.
You also need to ensure you don’t hire a company that says yes to everything you request. Find a website designer who will work with you, listen to you, and provide ideas of their own.
6. Ongoing Maintenance
Once your site is up and active, you may think your work is done. Unfortunately, this isn’t the case.
In fact, it is necessary to ensure your site is regularly maintained. While you can hire someone in-house to handle this for you, it can be expensive.
A better option is to find out if the website designer you used to create your site offers ongoing maintenance for your site. This is something that many modern companies offer.
Be sure to ask about this at the initial meeting. It is better to find out now, so you know if you need to search for someone else to handle this aspect of your website.
7. The Timeline
Do you have a specific launch date in mind for your new website? If so, it is important to ensure the designer can meet it. This includes the creation of the site and revisions.
Some designers can handle even extensive projects in just a few weeks. However, others are going to have longer turnaround times. More popular designers may even have a waiting list for new clients.
While the timeline is not as important as some of the other factors listed here, it is something to consider, especially if you have a hard deadline.
8. Copyright Considerations
When signing a contract with a website designer, be sure you are given ownership of the whole website. All your content, including the graphics you hire someone to create and coding work, should belong to you, not the website designer you hired.
If this is not outlined in the contract, it is a good idea to have it added.
Important Information When Choosing a Website Designer
When you are choosing a website designer, considering the factors above will put you in the best position to do so. Take your time to make this important decision, which will help ensure you get the results desired.
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