This first part will cover some of the criteria that you need to look for in a designer along with the type of questions you should be asking of yourself and the designer. Part two will cover the five different elements that generally affect the costs of a site and help prospects understand why there is such wide variation from designer to designer.
Of course, if you would like to read the whole article, feel free to read it here at my business blog. There is also a link to the pdf version if you wish for a printout. I welcome all feedback so that I can improve it. Let`s begin;
This is reading that every small to mid size business should have on hand when approaching a web designer or design company. Many clients lose money with their websites because they failed to do the necessary due diligence of hiring a designer. At Sachi Studio, we believe that an informed client is the best client to have. After finishing this brief guide, you will be able to;
- Identify the goals for your website,
- Know what questions to ask of a web designer,
- Understand the various costs associated with developing a website,
If you approach 10 web designers about their prices, you will get 10 different answers. When a prospect uses price as the sole criteria of hiring, they will usually focus on the lower end designers. This is exactly when trouble begins and horror stories occur. Instead, you should be approaching designers with the goal of who is most qualified in terms of skillsets instead of prices. By hiring designers who add the most value, you will receive a website that will prove to more valuable to your business.
So how then, do you find a designer who can add value to your bottom line? The answer lies in the goals that you want out of your site. Below are five questions to ask yourself to help clarify your goals. Once you determine the website goals, you will then use them as a guide to help you find the right designer for your business. Remember; not all web designers are created equal. These questions are meant to help you filter out the unqualified web designers.
- Do I want my website to be ranked well within the search engines for certain keywords that customers could be using to search for my business? If so, then you want to find a designer who has skillsets in Search Engine Optimization Strategies.
- Do I want the option to update the website on my own rather than rely on a web designer? If you want to update the site on your own, then you should find a designer who is familiar with various Content Management Systems and how to design for the CMS Software.
- Am I planning to sell products online? If you do, then you should find a designer who has skills in database programming and ecommerce functionality.
- Will I be writing the web copy for the website or should I find someone who can? If you write it, your webcopy should be finished by the time the designer is done on their end, otherwise this delays the project further. If you want your web designer to do this, then you should make sure that she knows how to write webcopy. Most people know how to write, but few know how to write effectively on the web and to get visitors to buy from you.
- Do I want the site to play a marketing role in my business? If so, then you want to find a designer who understands various types of online marketing strategies and how those techniques can be integrated into your website to bring in more customers.
In summary, these are what you should look for in a web designer. We recommend that you ask the questions below of your designer. The designer should also be able to show previous work with respect to these requirements.
- Does the web designer have knowledge of search engine optimization strategies? If so, does he have a portfolio of work to show his competency in SEO? What kind of techniques will he be employing and does he have a methodology to developing a well-ranked site? How is the research performed?
- Does the web designer have experience in designing for ecommerce websites? What type of software will he be using?
- Does the web designer have experience with designing for content management systems? Will he be training you on how to use the software so that you are not reliant on him for future maintenance? Is it proprietary or open source software?
- Does the web designer know how to write effective web copy? How are the rates structured?
- Does the web designer have an understanding of various online marketing strategies that can help the customer make more money from the website? What type of marketing strategies does the designer provide? Brand creation? Email marketing? Business blogging consulting? SEO? Article writing?