If you’ve found yourself at the stage of your business venture where you’re looking for a new website, or a complete re-design of your old one, it’s important to choose the right company to do the job. Your website acts as your shop front, so it has an important job in attracting potential customers, and encouraging them to buy your products/use your services.
With so many web design and development companies out there, it can be difficult to choose the one that’s going to build the perfect website for you. Here’s a few things to look out for, which can help you with your quest…
Any good web design company worth your consideration should have a selection of their previous work ready to show you. It’s important to be able to see the usual standard of their websites, to ensure that they can provide what you’re looking for. Ideally, you’re looking for a strong portfolio, one which shows that the company is consistent with high-quality designs, and have the ability to match the style you’re looking for.
Look through a few different portfolio’s, and take down some notes on things you like/don’t like, what kind of style and layout you’re swayed towards, and any ideas you have on colours and logos. You might find that you come across an entirely new type of design that catches your eye more than what you initially had in mind, which is why it’s important to see what type of designs are out there first.
You should make sure that you have a budget in mind, so that you can approach companies who typically cater to your price range. There’s no point investing time in researching and meeting with web design companies that are going charge over what you’re willing to pay, as it’s a waste of both your time and theirs.
You would like to think that price usually reflects quality, but not always. If it seems too cheap to be true, it probably is. You’re not going to get a custom built website for £1,000, and you won’t always need to fork out over £20,000 for one either. It’s important to ensure that you’re not paying over the odds, and are getting good value for your money.
This closely relates to the price that you’re willing to pay for a website. If you’re a small business with a limited budget, you don’t want to be looking towards large companies that are used to working with big corporations. The likelihood is, they’re going to be out of your price range and can struggle to understand what it is that you require from a website.
Similarly, you want to ensure that by choosing a smaller company, they will be able to handle the workload and meet deadlines, as well as providing the support needed before, during and after the build is complete.
By choosing a web design company, you’re essentially putting all of your trust in them to take your business to the next level. You need to ensure that you can build a strong partnership with their team, and strike up a chemistry that will help the relationship flow. A face-to-face meeting with the people who will be your main source of contact is a good starting point, before committing to working with a company. They should be easy enough to contact if you were to have any queries, and willing to discuss any changes along the way in order to keep the project flowing smoothly.
Will the company be 100% committed to building the website you need? You want to make sure that they’re interested in getting to know your business in order to build the most suitable website, and are willing to suggest ideas and take on board your own contributions also. If they’re fully committed, they’ll give you personal attention and spend the time discussing the website with you one-to-one.
A good web design company won’t just build great looking websites, but will also recognise the importance of content. Ideally, they’ll have a copywriting team on board that will able to provide suitable content (which may come at an extra cost), to ensure that your website is useful and not just functional. Some companies will outsource this work, or you might decide to do it yourself. If so, it’s important to ensure that you will have full access to the website’s content management system so that you can upload content whenever you like.
Does the company have a marketing team? Online marketing is important to ensure that your website has a place on the internet, and has been worth your while investing in one. With a marketing team on board, the company will have better knowledge keeping important things like SEO in mind during the build, to ensure that the website is fully optimised. You can, of course, hire a different marketing agency once the website is live, but it’s good to keep it all in one place with the people who know your website inside out.
When deciding which web design company to work with, ensure that you spend a good amount of time researching them and reading reviews from past customers on their experiences. It’s not a decision to be rushed, and you’ll reap the benefits from a careful choice in the long run.