Hiring a web designer is a big decision for small businesses. It’s important to find the right person or company that can create your vision, that is conscious to your needs, and that is right for your budget. It can quickly become confusing if you’re unsure of the technology or methodology web designers and developers use. If the world of web design is completely out of your wheelhouse, that’s OK. We’re here to provide you with all of the most important questions you should be asking before you decide to hire a web designer.
Your first meeting with a web design company should be like an interview to see if they would be a good fit for your business. To help you find the best fit, we want to dig a little deeper with these questions. No softballs like “what do you charge?” or “what services do you offer?” Those are the easy questions that come naturally with making business decisions. Let’s get down to the nitty gritty:
Q1: How much or what kind of experience do you have?
It’s not necessarily a bad thing if a designer has only been doing websites for a year or two, but it would be nice to know if you’re going to be their first website. Industry experience is a valuable thing to have, especially when it comes to websites. Knowing the industry best practices is key to creating an optimal website.
Q2. Do you have examples of previous work?
A designer who mainly creates websites for government groups or doctors offices may not have the best resources or experience for building an artist portfolio website or a boutique store website. By seeing designers’ previous work, you can get a feel for their style, what they’re capable of, and what they may be lacking.
Q3: Have you worked with other clients with similar goals? What were the results like?
If you require certain functionality for your website, it’d be helpful to know the web designer has worked with or built similar functions before. It’s also important to know if the results were successful. If they were not successful or if the designer doesn’t have that experience, are they up-front about it? Do they seem confident they will be able to learn and provide for what you need?
Q4: How will you help me reach my goals?
Every web design company should have a strategy or process for completing your website in an efficient manner. Before hiring a web designer, you want to be sure they will care about your project and your business and not just be focused on getting paid. A good web designer will be able to answer this question with ease and confidence, highlighting the features of your website that will contribute to reaching your goals.
Q5: How long will the process take?
There is no right answer to this question. The amount of time your website will take is completely dependent on your needs, the amount of work the designer is already doing, the size of your website, and many other factors. If you have the expendable time, it’s best to stay open-minded. If you’re in a crunch for time and the designer gives you a long time period, then it’s time to find a company or designer that can accommodate your needs. Keep in mind, it will either cost you a lot more money or the end result may seem half-assed if you require a one-week turnaround.
Q6: Will my website be search engine friendly?
You want your website to be noticed online right? Then, you absolutely want to make sure your website is search engine friendly. This means search engines like Google will show your website in its search results when users look up certain words or phrases. This creates more awareness for you by opening up your websites to potentially millions of people.
Q7: Will I be able to view the work in progress?
A good web designer should be checking in with you every step of the way, from the first mockup to the first page created. It’s advantageous to be able to see your website as it’s being built and give feedback along the way. This could save your designers from having to make major changes last minute, prolonging the process.
Q8: Do you build websites from scratch or with a template?
This question can help put the speediness factor into perspective. If the designer solely creates websites from scratch, it is going to take a significantly longer time to launch than if they build from a template. This can affect the price as well. Template websites require much less work and should be priced accordingly.
Q9: What if I don’t like the initial design? How many revisions do I get?
As mentioned above, a good web designer should be checking in with you to get your feedback after every step! If you don’t like the initial design, you shouldn’t be paying for something you don’t like. Additionally, it’s important to find out how many times you’re allotted to revise your website.
Q10: Who will be working on my website?
It’s helpful to know who you’ll be working with. Will there be a team of people working on your website or just one person? Being able to communicate with that team or person is crucial throughout the design and development process.
When hiring a web designer, you should be thinking about your business and your needs. Having a good relationship with your designer, makes the entire process that much easier. Ask these questions to get the best idea of what you’d be getting if you hired them. Happy website building!
Bonus question: Are you looking for more helpful website tips and how-to’s?
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