Giving your website a major rebuild or overhaul can be an overwhelming and daunting task. So much so that many business owners find collaborating with a website design company to be the best solution. Fortunately, if you take this route, you will have a lot of options.
Working with a website design company isn’t something you should take lightly, however. You’ll be investing quite a number of resources in this partnership—specifically time and money. You need to make sure you find the best possible company to suit your situation. Otherwise, you may end up regretting your decision. That being said, we’ve put together a list of the top three things you ought to consider before you hire a website design company.
Choosing a Website Design Company: Some Practical Considerations
Before we get into the details of working with a website design company, we’re going to cover some basic tips on choosing the best one for your project.
Use their own website as a reference point.
Don’t be afraid to do extensive research. Give yourself as many options as possible. Start looking for website design companies that can cater to your needs and use their own website as a reference point for their work. If their website looks great, chances are they do great work, too.
Reach out to the companies that catch your eye.
When shopping for a website design company, make sure you reach out to the ones that catch your eye. Communication is important even at this stage, and asking direct questions is a great way for you to learn more about how the company can (or can’t) help you. You can also take this opportunity to ask for more samples of their work, their design packages, and their other services.
Compare costs and services to find the most cost-efficient option.
Never jump on the first website design company you find with the lowest price. Using price as a deciding factor rarely ever works, and many business owners often come to regret it. Instead, aim for cost-efficiency, quality, and value.
For instance, you can either choose a redesigned website for the going price or you can choose to get a website design implemented with proven SEO-friendly elements for a little bit extra. You can make a one-time purchase of a website at a discounted price or you can purchase a website that comes with a recurring monthly charge.
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Now, on to those considerations:
#1. Your Why: What Are You Hoping to Achieve?
Everything stems from intention. It’s important to focus on the intent of the process. Otherwise, you risk losing sight of your goal. If you want to make the best choices and stay productive, always start with your “why”.
Why do you want a new website, or why do you want to redesign your old one? Why do you want to work with a website design company instead of hiring an in-house website designer? Why do you want to focus on the design of your website right now?
Once you are clear on your “why,” it becomes much easier for you to understand how things need to line up. This, in turn, will help you better dictate the flow of the website design process. Not in the technical sense, per se, but in terms of priorities. Since you know what you want and why you want it, you can make better decisions when it really matters.
What’s more, this understanding can give you a sense of clarity that you can consult to make the best, most-informed choices during crucial moments, should unforeseen events or issues arise.
#2. Your Expectations: How Will a Website Design Company Help You Achieve Your Goal?
Once you are clear on your goal, you should also be clear on how working with a website design company can help you achieve it. You’ll no doubt have expectations about how the website is going to turn out or how you want your vision translated into the overall design. Define those expectations and don’t be afraid to refer to them as you move forward.
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For instance, do you expect the website design company to implement SEO (search engine optimization) best practices in the design? That means you expect them to know how SEO works. Do you expect them to stick strictly to the design brief you provide, or do you expect that they’ll offer their own professional suggestions?
And, technically speaking, what expectations do you have about working with them? What are your expectations regarding the quality of their work, their timeline, and their resources?
Make sure you share these expectations with the website design company as well. Communication is extremely important during collaborative efforts such as these—and communication is always a two-way street. Even the most open and communicative website designers in the world won’t be able to produce their absolute best if you don’t let them know what you want and what you’re expecting.
#3. Your Priorities: What do You Value?
As a company or business owner, what do you value the most during collaborations? Because hiring a website design company pretty much ensures you’re going to get a visually stunning website; there’s no question there. But is a good website all you want from your website project?
Some people would say that’s the obvious answer. But we encourage you to look beyond budgets, themes, and portfolios. Look at the value that the company can give you beyond the website, and reference it against your company’s own values and goals.
Your work ethic and company culture, for example. Are they a good fit for each other? If you value communication, you’re bound to end up extremely frustrated if you work with a company that doesn’t believe in constant, consistent communication. If you value your time, you’re likely to appreciate a company that works to find the most efficient and effective solution.
And if you value, well, value—as in, the quality of the work/services the company can give you, in proportion to what you invest—then you’ll likely want to look for a web design company that offers other related services that you may find useful (like SEO or digital marketing).
The success of this venture depends heavily on how you and the web design company work together. Inconsistent communication (or a complete lack thereof) can sabotage the end result. Lack of clear vision can cause multiple requests for edits, adjustments, do-overs, and the like. And snap judgments from the get-go can end in costly regret.
So for best results, always consider all your options before making a decision, and frame those considerations around your intent, your expectations, and your definition of value.