Choosing a good web designer is critical for the success of your online presence. Recently there has been an increase in cheap website development companies that provide you with cookie cutter sites. The good news is you’ll save money upfront, but you’re unlikely to get the full benefits of your business having an online presence where you’ll either sacrifice your chances of being found in an increasingly competitive online world or annoy your customers by giving them a bad online experience.

We wanted to share our top 5 tips you should consider when choosing a web design company for your business or personal website.

Tip 1: Communication is Key

It is important for the web designer to have a clear picture not only of you, but your business’ goals and mission. It’s important that you feel comfortable talking to the designer, as you will need clear communication between the both of you. This is essential so that the designer can easily interpret and define your online business needs.

Tip 2: Beware of Page One Google Ranking

Be wary of any designer that promises you a top spot in Google searches. Of course the thought of your business being placed ahead of your competition in search results is very alluring, however there are a number of factors that influence your ranking in Google and depending on the type of business you operate and the competition, it can take time.

A good web designer will use their skills to provide great website structure and content to ensure your site is flagged on Google’s radar. With a properly structured site, you will be visible amongst the top search results, however where you are ranked in different searches will vary overtime and should not be guaranteed.

Tip 3: Pretty isn’t Always Effective

Don’t get too caught up with a designer that insists on building a site that contains a wide array of flashing bells and whistles. This typically involves use of a flash player, which can not only be too ‘busy’ for a visitor to focus on, but can also slow down how quickly your site loads. Unfortunately this may mean you’ll lose visitors before the site even loads! You want to make sure your web designer is able to design both a clean and functional website for you and your business.

Tip 4: Know the Additional Charges

Watch out for hidden fees and changes. Your web designer should be upfront about the costs of developing your website as well as the ongoing costs of maintaining and optimizing your site.

Whilst the bulk of the work is done up front, your site will require regular maintenance and management so you should anticipate and budget for ongoing costs – just make sure you know what they are up front!

As a guide, the charges to expect when building a website will relate to:

  • Initial build and delivery of the website
  • ‘Hosting’ fees
  • Security, maintenance and optimization fees
  • Regular reporting on the performance of your website

In most cases the ongoing activity will be packaged into a monthly or quarterly fee for ease of management for both you and the web designer. Whatever the amount and frequency, the web designer should up front and clear with the costs involved – particularly once your online business needs have been assessed.

Tip 5: Designer/Developer for the Price of One

A good web designer should be able to see your website project through from beginning to end. This will ensure the designer is completely aware and in control of your business requirements and you are more likely to get the end result your business desires.

The designer should be well equipped to assess your business needs and goals, communicate their proposal with you (and any subsequent changes as your communications evolve), and then implement this through to the finished product. If you split this process up by using two separate individuals, there is likely to be a loss in communication and lack of complete understanding of the website’s goals. This may result in a website that doesn’t quite meet your expectations.

Fledgling Designs are a local Melbourne Website Design and Development company, dedicated to providing your business with a unique and informative site for your current and potential customers.

You can read more about us here or contact us to discuss your online business needs.