When choosing a web designer, you are choosing a partner. Not only is this person supplying you with a much needed service for your business, they are also telling the world who you are and what you do. They will be partnering with you in sharing your message, goods and services with your clientele.
So, What do you need to know about them? What things should you be looking at in your current and/or future web designer or web maintenance person?
First, Look at their personality. Are they organized? On time to meetings? Do they follow up with you on a regular basis? Do they miss items you ask for frequently? Are they often in a rush? Do they speak about being so busy and never seem to have time for you? Make sure that your Designer meets your needs while still being able to handle other clients. No one should wait longer than 10-15 days to have a change made on their website (as long as it is within the maintenance contract terms.)
Second, Look at their work. I know that many people say they are website designers. I have heard many horror stories of client’s who have learned the hard way, not every one who claims to be one is one. Also, you may be more drawn to one aesthetic than another. This is OK, don’t go with someone just because they are your friend, or because you think you should as not to rock the business boat. Branding is very important, go with your gut. Trust me, there is enough business to go around for everyone. Choose someone whose work you enjoy and think would be a good representation of your product.
Third, Look at their price. I know you have a cousin or friend whose husband can whip up a site in an hour and TADA, you are online. And I know that college freshman down the street or that photographer said she would do it for $300. And I know you are on a budget so, what harm can it do? It’s just a website, right? That is like saying, who cares if my car is reliable, it just gets me to work and back, right? In today’s world of smart phones, tablets and the internet, your website is how you are legitimized. You get what you pay for and in this case, that’s not a lot. On the other hand, a website that costs $5,000 is too pricey due to the fact you should change your site within 3 years anyway. Go for something more in the middle. For most websites, you are looking at spending about $1000 to $2500.
These are not rules, but more like Guidelines. Everyone is different and a different approach should be made to each website. As a website designer, I am saddened by the number of pretenders there are out there who take advantage of the small business owner. I hope that on your hunt for the perfect Designer, you can use the guidelines I have talked about in this post. Now, Go Get Em!!
Elizabeth Pampalone has been creating websites for 15 years and is committed to customer satisfaction. She works with her client to create a beautiful, one of a kind, customer experience that will have YOUR clients coming back for more! Her passion for teaching has spread to her newest endeavor, MyBusinessWorkshops.com which she runs with her husband, and partner in Crime, Joseph. As if that wasn’t enough, Joseph and Elizabeth fix computer hardware and software in your home or office. Yes, they do house calls!