In days gone by, customers used to visit a business at its head office or branch and browse through products. However, we live in the 21st Century – a time where the internet dominates any marketplace. So, it can be said that your companies head office online is your website. And as important as keeping your office clean and impressionable, it is equally important to have a good website. The website will be the first impression of your business for many potential customers. It must also be expected to be used thoroughly by your already frequent customers.
Thus, the people who design your website have a great responsibility to fulfil. This guide teaches you how to choose a good web design agency to make your webpage.
- Understand your requirement
Before anything, you as the company must clearly know the requirements you need for your website. If you are unclear, then when discussing with the agency, they too will get a wrong idea. In the end, you will find components of the website that you don’t want and some that are missing. A good way to achieve this is to list down the needs and goals of your website. Some examples are:
- Creating leads for your organization.
- Create links to your social media platforms.
- Collecting donations, subscription fees, and payments.
- Allowing users to provide feedback via onsite forms.
- Ask around
Your colleagues and friends in other businesses may have already gotten their website made through agencies. It is worth scoping their opinions and considering their recommendations. Even if you don’t find a good agency, you can be warned of agencies that haven’t done a good job.
- First impressions
Like our lives, first impressions play a big role in choosing a web design agency. You can predict a lot of things from it. Here are some things to lookout for:
- How is their own website like?
- Do they seem professional, communicable people?
- How frequently do they request to meet?
- How rapid was their response?
- Review portfolios
A portfolio is what the web design agency presents to a potential customer to show off their past projects. Once you have selected a viable agency, ask to see their portfolio. Make sure you don’t get misled by large attractive client company logos. Instead you can use several methods to get a sense of their work:
- See if the agency has worked with different types of companies in the past. If they have only worked in one field, then their experience is very narrow and can be untrustworthy.
- Visit the websites of their former clients to get insight on how your website might turn out with them.
- Do they communicate with you well?
When meeting with an agency, you are the expert in your field, but they are the professionals in web design. Therefore, it is necessary for ideas to be transmitted across seamlessly. Take time to make sure they understand what you want to the letter. And make sure that they do not try to market their ideas to you. That being said, constructive suggestions regarding the internet and software side are welcome. An agency that just says yes to everything is not the answer, and they might not create a good product.
- Support for modern trends and futureproofing
If your business is a new/up and coming one, it would be a black mark to have outdated website design. The web design agency you choose must be versatile and using modern tools and designs. For example, the biggest focus now is minimalism, where the content is simple to digest. If the portfolio shows cluttered websites, then it is a good idea to avoid that agency.
Also, find out what type of content management system (CMS) they will be using. A CMS will help the owner of the website manage content easily. Ideally, the CMS must be one that gets regular updates and security patches. This will deter potential attackers to your website. Frameworks like WordPress and Magento are popular.
- Agency’s average customer size
Find out the agency’s average customer size and compare it with your company’s size. If they are used to working with larger companies mainly, they won’t be used to working at a smaller scale.
- Auxiliary costs
Ask the agency if there are any auxiliary costs that might come down the road. It’s always better to be safe than sorry and knowing of such costs before hand you can be prepared. There almost definitely will be costs for:
- SSL certificates.
- Website hosting.
- Domain name registration and subscription.
- Cloud services.
- Plugins costs.
- Do not select the cheapest agency
There is a reason for anything being cheaper than the norm. Most of the time, they achieve this low price by cutting corners. For something as vital as your company’s website, it is worth spending as much as you can. Cutting corners will result in less website functionality which will then not be able to net you the maximum profits. Remember, this is a direct investment you make.
Finally, do your research and use these tips to narrow down the list of agencies. Conduct meetings with the final select agencies and make your choice. Good Luck!