A few people know the bits and bobs of designing a website that is appealing and coverts into leads.
First things first.
Every website is different and every company has different requirements.
Your requirements might be varied like a completely new design and build or a tedious refresh where individual aspects require correction.
Keep in mind that regardless of design refresh or a new design and build from scratch, there are numerous factors that you need to keep in mind before you start.
For example, there are considerations about the content, the performance of the content, the latest technologies that can get implemented, and the best way to integrate the tools in the system, just to name a few.
However, not everyone knows what's going on under the hood (of a website).
That’s why most companies hire a web design company.
If you are looking for one ....
Did you know? At Quoracreative we have been making awesome, amazing and effective websites for clients for over 10 years ?
Start with your homework
Let us start by doing the bit that requires your efforts.
If you do not have the necessary technical knowledge when it comes to web design and development, you have either of the following choices.
You can work with a freelance web developer or partner up with a professional web design and development company.
However, keep in mind that with any of the options mentioned above, you will have to pay charges to your expert.
This means, always consider your options and research about the reputation of the firm before signing on the dotted line.
But before we even start, we need to know what are we looking for in a website.
Following qualities of a good websites are bare minimum.
Pro Tip: Before you select a certain organization, it is extremely important to perform the necessary background research into the abilities and the reputation of the firm.
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Qualities of good website
- A clean and well organized design
- Reflects your brand
- Helps to provide right information for your customers
- Helps users with any questions
- Displays your services and products in an appealing manner
- Provides vital contact information
- Has well placed Call to action Controls (CTA)
- Easy to navigate
- Fast and reliable
- Aesthetically pleasing to visitors
- Optimized for search engines rankings
- Works on all modern devices (responsive)
- It is secure
Web design process steps
Web design process can be divided into following steps
- Definition of requirements and goals
- Strategy planning
- Design and development
- Testing and review
- Launch and delivery
Website Refresh vs Redesign
Web redesign would normally required more than just a change to the frontend or visual appearance. Most often it needs a new structure and use of new and modern available technologies (Web development technologies evolve every 1 to 2 years).
A refresh might involve a few updates to the design and layout. This process does not require changes to the existing structure of the website.
Weather looking for a website redesign or refresh, your exact requirement can be understood only after a careful evaluation of the existing site by the expert.
Alongwith, the best way forward is to do your homework properly and understand what your exact requirements are before you take any decision.
Pro Tip: Keep in mind that an expert service can support you right from the planning stage to the implementation stage.
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The following post lists all the critical considerations before hiring a web design expert according to the current market trends and trends.
How to hire a web design agency
1. Understand your project requirements
Understanding your project requirements is the most important bit for the selection process.
You should start with the "Qualities of good website" list mentioned earlier and look for further functionality on top of that.
Once you are able to outline your needs further, you will be able to figure out the scale of the help and the size of the team you will need.
Your requirement will also help you to understand the exact type of team you need to hire.
For example, your requirements might be about various complex and custom work on the website, or you might require social media integrations etc.
2. Search web design companies on Google
There is no better place to search than Google, when hiring a web design company.
Google’s strives to help its users find the best possible solutions.
Whether it's a freelance web designer or a web design company, you will collect plenty of information if you do the search right.
But to use Google search to find a good web design company, you need to search using right keywords.
For example, if you’re looking for a company who can create a custom website for your needs, make sure your search is precise.
Something along these lines.
- Custom web design
- Ecommerce web design service
- Florist web design service
- Florist website design company
- Florist website design company London
Repeat your search with different keyword combinations and take notes.
A detailed search will help you find better options, quality and pricing.
When you have shortlisted a few companies, it is time to formulate your requirements and communicate with potential web design companies.
3. Review the web design company website
If you are looking for a web design company, it is imperative that the web design company should have an awesome website itself.
When we say awesome, it not only means great UI and design but also that the company has a grip on factors that make a website successful, such as:
- Page structure
- Ease of navigation
- Information distribution
- Website speed
- Call to action(CTA) placements
Just to name a few.
If they have their own sh^t together, chances are, they know what are doing.
If a company has a low standard website, don't accept an excuse.
Move on to the next web design company on your list.
4. Communicate your project requirements with web design company
Once your needs get outlined, you need to approach your team of specialists so that the entire process goes smoothly.
You need to understand that your requirements might change according to the type of business you are.
Be prepared to leave "room to manover".
Applications and websites evolve over time.
Processes change and new technologies can force you to review your needs.
For example, the requirements vary with the nature of the business.
You need to be very clear whether your requirement is that of an e-commerce venture, social media platform integrations, customized forms, and publications along with geo-location content filtering or custom layouts or even something else.
Make sure of the requirement and then approach your experts to get the best value for your money.
Keep in mind that freelancers and web design firms have different capabilities.
So, if you are looking for a lot of custom integrations and layouts, then you must work with a web design firm.
With an expert firm, you can address all your problems under one roof.
5. Calculate realistic project timeline
Understanding the overall timeline for the project is exceptionally vital before starting the process.
Keep in mind that the timeline is an essential factor when it comes to deciding on the team.
Web design companies have prior bookings, so before signing on the contract, discuss your matter with the team to understand the timeline for the job and the availability of the experts and the team for the job.
You will require communications, approvals, gathering of content as well as numerous meetings to underline the finer aspects of the project.
Always be aware of the timeline to make sure that the team will be able to work correctly to make the partnership a fruitful one.
This is why working with a firm is advisable since it will allow you to save on time as there will be less to and fro movement in case you have decided to work with two or more freelancers.
6. The location of the team is critical
With web design work, promptness is essential.
So, it is crucial to avoid wasting time due to different time zones and locations for your team of experts.
Yes, you might have found the right expert overseas, but the process will get tedious as you will need to wait for approvals due to delays in the communication channels.
According to our experts, anything more than a delay of a couple of hours will prove to be costly for your venture in the long run.
So, it is important to work with a local expert or a web-design firm.
You need to understand that often your expert will need to sit at meetings with your entire venture operations management team to discuss the finer details. So, go local for the best results.
7. Inquire about companies web design process
Streamlined processes work the best when you are looking for the right web design expert.
This is another reason why you should work with a professional firm instead of a freelancer.
With an efficient team, you can be assured of the meeting the deadline and completion of the main aspects of the process.
So, it is vital that you get an idea about the working of the team when you are negotiating a contract with the company officials or the spokesperson.
Always go for an agile process, as this will allow you to save on time and money while keeping frustration out of the way.
Pro Tip: AGILE process is a practice of continuous small iteration during development and testing of a project lifecycle. This process is the best to accomodate any changes at any stage of development.
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8. Inquire about all the services offered by the web design company
As stated in the earlier section that the requirements can be varied between a full re-design or a refresh.
But it is needless to say that you need to ask about the various development services that will get included in your package when you sign the contract papers.
There are certain web page developer firms who do not include basic service by default such as SEO, social media integration or blog service etc.
Therefore, it is incredibly vital to ask your questions to know all the services that are included in the overall service package.
This is why it is imperative to work with someone that offers multiple services like design, development, SEO, content creation and placement etc.
9. Inquire about the net expenditure for the whole project
When you are looking at potential firms, organizations and freelancers keep a lookout for services that provide you with the cost for the entire project upfront and right from the start.
Always be aware of your budget and how much you can spend on a project.
This will allow you to plan better and prevent you from overspending on the budget.
10. Ask for previous work samples and references
Before you select a certain organization, it is extremely important to perform the necessary background research into the abilities and the reputation of the firm.
This will allow you to select the right firm for the job.
However, even with the customer reviews and ratings, the most important part of the firm hunting process is knowledge about the past work done.
11. Check for web design company reviews
Personal recommendation is number one factor people make a choice.
More reviews are better.
And for the right reasons.
More than 90% of the consumers acknowledge that they trust word of mouth and personal recommendations rather than advertising.
Reviews matter the most.
Always spare some time and go through as many as you can.
When checking reviews, make sure you:
- Especially check the negative ones.
- A company has a large number of reviews ( 50 reviews of average 4.5 rating are better than 10 reviews with an average of 5 rating).
- Note down the positive and negative service aspects.
Give an extra attention to the negative reviews about a web design company.
Has anyone said anything negative about a kind of service you are looking for in your own web design project?
If a company has a negative review but cheaper price tag, it is better to keep looking further.
Last thing: Trust reviews from third party review service such as Google, 99firms or Clutch.
12. Take web design firm's age into consideration
Longer tha age of the company, more experience they will have and can provide better service.
After all, practice makes you perfect.
A minimum 3 years of experience being on the market is absolutely necessary.
This proves they know what they are doing by helping their customers and successfully staying afloat.
14. Check how many projects company has completed successfully
The number of projects performed which will give you an idea about the experience and the expertise of the firm.
Ask your questions directly to the firm official before signing on the dotted line.
15. Check the scale of the projects completed
Ask about the scale of the projects, which will allow you to gauge the level of expertise of the firm at handling big projects with several complications and intricacies.
Pro Tip: It is very important to discuss matters openly and negotiate clearly with your web ddesign company regarding all the aspects and requirements for your project.
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16. Web Design aesthetic
The third aspect you need to ask regarding the past work done is about the aesthetic.
Your website needs to be attractive enough to the customers so that the UX or the user-experience metrics are high.
Always look into the different web elements designed by the firm for an up and running website to gauge the performance metrics for the expert service.
17. Capabilities of web design firm (Tools and Technologies)
Most importantly, you need to enquire in detail about the technical capabilities of the organization.
Keep in mind that web design is all about the successful completion of technical requirements and the completion of all the aspects of the project.
Few things you can discuss:
Technologies for USER INTERFACE (UI) / Frontend
Do they use modern technologies for Use Interface (UI) and User Experience (UX) Design? A few technologies / keywords to help you out.
- Html 5
- Smarty Templates
- Asp.Net Razor
- Font Awesome
Under The Hood (Back End) / Server
- Visual Studio 2018
- Asp.Net MVC
- SQL Server
- Microsoft Azure (cloud hosting)
- Cloudflare (Domain and SSL)
- Stripe (Payment)
Integrations and Performance
- Google API's
- Google Analytics
- Google Webmaster Tools
- Google Pagespeed Insight
- Facebook API
18. Transparency of the processes
Lastly, it is crucial to work with a firm that allows for complete transparency of the processes, including meetings, designing, and implementation of the design elements.
And most importantly, reports at all modules completion and milestones.
It is important to discuss matters openly and negotiate clearly with your expert regarding all the aspects and requirements for your project.
Keep in mind to ask about the meeting of deadlines because, without that, you cannot have a launch date for your website.
So, instead of being confused regarding the options available, consider your choices with the aid of the points mentioned above to find the right expert for your project.