When you're deciding who you're going to employ to get your website built, it can be a difficult decision.
How do you know your web design agency is going to give you what you want? Can you rely on them after you've paid? What happens if the worst happens? There are many potential dangers we can help you to avoid.
To assist you in your decision-making process, we've come up with the 5 tips to choosing the right web design agency. After all, it's better to do research in the first instance, rather than spend a lot of wasted money. This concise overview will assist you to understand some of the areas you should talk through with prospective web design agencies.
- Search Engine Optimisation (SEO):
Essentially, this means asking if your web design agency offers you search engine optimisation (SEO) as part of their services. It's important to be clear on what they do offer and what they don't offer.
Many web design agencies may be very effective at web design but SEO is a specialism in its own right. If they do offer SEO, find out what the this actually means in reality. Your web design agency may well use a lot of terms you might not be familiar with, such as 'on page optimisation', 'off page optimisation', 'page rank', 'link juice', 'link building', 'white hat' and other techniques etc.
It's worth you taking the time to research these terms and understand what's important to you and your website. Avoid short-term gain techniques, these will only sabotage your website down the line for the short-term gain. It's worth considering a web design agency who uses SEO friendly software in the first instance. Ask your web design agency if their software is search engine friendly. If yes, ask them specifically how is the software they use SEO friendly?
Communication is key to the success of your project. We all know this doesn't just mean knowing you've spoken once and they were very keen to know you and get you on board. You should look to do your due diligence. This should give you a good understanding of how well the web design agency communicates with their clients.
Find out their opening hours. What happens if there's a problem? Clarify the ways in which you can communicate with your web design agency? Such as telephone, email, instant message, mobile, text message, face to face, forums?
If you have an ongoing contract how will communication be managed on a daily basis? In this case, it's a reason why choosing a local web designer is important for you. You will find it so much easier to deal and communicate with a web design agency located within the immediate vicinity of your office or business.
- CMS versus Brochures:
When the internet began, many websites resembled brochures. You visited a site with lots of static, non-dynamic pages. Today, with the increasingly sophisticated web technologies that exist, websites such as Facebook and Twitter update dynamically, in real time. If you know that you wish to update your website yourself you should seriously consider opting for a content management system (CMS).
The great benefit is that you can run the website yourself. For brochure style website you might have pay for updates as the web design agency has to spend time updating the website on your behalf. If you do go for a brochure style website, find out the ongoing management fees. If they do use a CMS system, ask them what training you'll have to get up to speed on using and administering the system.
- Speed Kills:
Speed does indeed kill. But in this case, it's slow speed that kills. Any website that loads over 6-8 seconds will quickly turn off visitors. How many times have you clicked on a website and when it slowly loaded you'd had enough? You then moved on or returned to Google. Ask your web design agency what hosting packages they use? Is it joint hosting system or on it's own dedicated server? You should be offered a menu of options for hosting based upon your needs. Be wary if not.
Follow up with your web design agency on how the hosting works? Talk to your web design agency about the options for speeding up your website. This can include a content delivery network (CDN), caching programs and minify. Does your web design agency offer these type of services? Remember, slow speed kills, a quick loading website has earned the right to be seen and heard.
- To be Open or Closed?
It's prudent to ask what would happen in the worst case scenario? If your web developer's company went bust, would your website still function? For those web design agencies who use their own in-house technology, find out what happens if they did go out of business? Would your website still function?
For web design agencies who use open source technologies such as Wordpress, Joomla, Drupal, etc these are open source so the technology at least should be safe. Ask about your hosting as well. Is the hosting tied to their own company? Often companies will use third-party hosting outside their own company.
A website is no doubt has become an integral part of every business when it comes to improving online presence. Or you can say that it is one of most effective marketing tools today. If you decide to create a unique brand value for your company, you must hire a recognised web design agency to do this task for you.
There are several companies in the market who offers website design services to fulfill your needs. Remember, follow these 5 tips above to choosing the right web design agency to get yourself a worthy of your project! You just need to analyse their services whether they are beneficial for your businesses or not.