When choosing a web designer, you are choosing a partner. Not only is this person supplying you with a much needed service for your business, they are also telling the world who you are and what you do. They will be partnering with you in sharing your message, goods and services with your clientele.
So, What do you need to know about them? What things should you be looking at in your current and/or future web designer or web maintenance person?
First, Look at their personality. Are they organized? On time to meetings? Do they follow up with you on a regular basis? Do they miss items you ask for frequently? Are they often in a rush? Do they speak about being so busy and never seem to have time for you? Make sure that your Designer meets your needs while still being able to handle other clients. No one should wait longer than 1-2 days to have a simple change made on their website.
Second, Look at their work. I know that many people say they are website designers. I have heard many horror stories of client’s who have learned the hard way, not every one who claims to be one is one. Also, you may be more drawn to one aesthetic than another. This is OK, don’t go with someone just because they are your friend, or because you think you should as not to rock the business boat. Branding is very important, go with your gut. Trust me, there is enough business to go around for everyone. Choose someone whose work you enjoy and think would be a good representation of your product. And remember, your branding is not mean to appeal to you. It is mean to appeal to your ideal client.
Third, Look at their price. I know you have a cousin or friend whose husband can whip up a site in an hour and TADA, you are online. And I know that college freshman down the street or that photographer said she would do it for $300. And I know you are on a budget so, what harm can it do? It’s just a website, right? That is like saying, who cares if my car is reliable, it just gets me to work and back, right? In today’s world of smart phones, tablets and the internet, your website is how you are legitimized. You get what you pay for and in this case, that’s not a lot. Don't go for a high priced site just because you think it will be better. Go with your instinct again on if you know, like and trust the person you are considering.
These are not rules, but more like Guidelines. Everyone is different and a different approach should be made to each website. As a website designer, I am saddened by the number of pretenders there are out there who take advantage of the small business owner. I hope that on your hunt for the perfect fit, you can use the guidelines I have talked about in this post. Now, Go Get Em!!