Your company’s website is usually all you have when making a first impression with a potential buyer or client online. You literally have just seconds to capture visitor’s attention, present benefit-oriented messaging and entice them to buy what you’re selling! Knowing this, it’s very important to have a professional, proven designer to build your website. Below is a brief outline to help you find a website designer that is right for you.
The 1st step to searching a website designer is to explore a few different ones. Just don’t hire the first one you speak with. Here are some places to begin looking:
- Referrals – Referrals are your safest bet for finding good web designers. If you are active on social networks, you should pose the question to your fans or followers.
- Search engines – use search engines to find web designers in your geographic location. Meeting with a local designer can be very helpful when creating web outlines, storyboards and helping them understand the vision you want for your website.
- Directories – Directories are sites, which list individuals or companies who provide web design services.
- Freelance job sites – You can also browse sites like Upwork or Upwork to find freelancers with the skills you need.
- Use existing partners – Ask your trusted business partners, such as your IT Services Providers or Web Hosting Company.
Tips when choosing a designer:
Once you’ve compiled a list of potential web designers, use the 4 tips below to narrow your list even further.
- Portfolio – Look through their portfolio (list of their recent web designs) to get a sense of the designer’s style and types of projects they have done.
- Industry/vertical specialty – Web designers come with all types of skills, some may be more skilled in graphic design while others are stronger in development or programming. A good web designer will have expertise in both but also extremely important is an expert in marketing (see tip below).
- Reputation – Testimonials on the designer’s website as well as referrals from current/previous customers are a must. If they are active in social media, check out their accounts and see what people are saying about them.
- Marketing – You want your designer to be an expert in search engine optimization (SEO), search engine marketing (SEM) as well as other online marketing services. A nice looking website will offer you little to no success if people aren’t able to find you via search engines. Do a search for a few of the designers’ recent projects in Google and see where they rank.
Ask for a quote (proposal):
After narrowing your list to the few you need to start collecting proposals. Contact the designer and provide them with a short brief of your project. This will ensure that the designer has all the necessary information to provide you an accurate quote. Your brief should include:
- Background of your business.
- Your website goals and audience.
- Specific deliverables of the project (i.e. logo, custom design or templates).
- Example of website designs that you like.
- Include any necessary backend integration to a database, customer portal, etc.
- Your deadline.
Last but not least, make sure you feel comfortable communicating with the designer. The rapport between you and your designer will ensure a great working relationship and the website you want.