What You Should Ask For
Tips and tricks for picking the right web design firm
How to save money when getting ready to build a new website
Here’s some useful information to consider when choosing what type of website you need and what type of web design firm you should higher.
Are you extremely price conscious? Be careful. There are some good U.S. home based web designers and overseas web design companies out there, but we can’t tell you how many times we’ve heard “I just spent $2,000 and have nothing to show for it.” Or “the web designer just disappeared and never finished the website” If you do go this route, you must do your homework and know what to ask for, like active samples and referrals for starters.
If you don’t have $3-5,000 for a quality, custom website, consider going to a template company and using one of their contractors to help set you up. Or for e-commerce, there are many 3rd party solutions like Big Commerce that have affordable options. There are also many social websites that you can use for free to market your company,without a website at all, like Yelp, Google plus, FaceBook and more.
When shopping for a web developer/designer will you ask for what you need? Want an “E-commerce” website for $550? You can get one, but…it may not be customized, branded, contain content and products, connected with a merchant account, have shipping or taxes setup, and may not even be secure. It takes about 4-6 hours to set up a free opensource shopping cart like this and another 30-90 hours to do the rest of the work needed for a professional, working shopping cart. To avoid the pitfalls of not asking all the right questions, use an experience customer friendly company, that will watch your back and ask you all the right questions.
When choosing what kind of web design and development you need, be honest with yourself about who will maintain it. We’ve built many content management system (CMS) websites for clients who thought they would have time to keep it up to date themselves, only to later pay us to edit their website with the CMS. That said, adding the CMS today is a lot more affordable than it was a couple of years ago and may be worth the extra cost anyway, because in most cases they can be faster to update and you’ll save cost on hourly editing fees later. Most CMS platforms also come with other features and add-on’s you may want later.
Content, content, content. Do you have any? Nothing slows down a project more for a web designer than waiting on client content. If you want more bang for your buck, have your text content, photos, logo artwork, and domain log-in ready. If you don’t have web content, tell your web designer ahead of time and be prepared to pay for this service. More on content writing.
Hint: If you are very organized and prepared, a web design firm will love you and probably get the job done early. That being said, most companies are not fully prepared and KO websites is here to walk you through every step as needed; and yes, we will still love you.
Money saving ideas- You want the whole kitchen sink? No problem, but do you really NEED the kitchen sink now? Many times for small businesses, just having a new website with strong SEO will bring in lots of new business alone. If you’re a start-up company, consider just establishing a web presence first and make upgrades as you go. But, if you’re really ambitious and funded well, check out our monthly all inclusive, full service digital marketing plan: KO’s All n1 Power Plan.
Great SEO information– The top 10 SEO things you need to know.
SEO FAQ’s– Great resources for frequently asked questions about SEO.
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