Finding the Right Web Designer
Your website is the digital face of your business, and you want it to be spectacular. Unfortunately, finding the perfect web designer to head up your web design work can be challenging.
There are an endless number of “designers” out there, from experienced, professional agencies, to college kids trying to make beer money with half of a graphic design degree under their belts.
Determining which designer is the right fit for your company is often a long and frustrating process. So, on this page, we’ve simplified and streamlined the process. We want you to venture forth into the world of web design confidently and equipped with the background to make an informed decision.
Set a budget
If you haven’t thought about how much you’re willing to spend on web design, this should be your first step. There’s no such thing as industry standard pricing, so you need to have a good idea of what your upper limit is.
The size of your budget determines both what level of web design you want and where you’ll get it from. Once you’ve established a tentative budget, you‘ll have a better idea of what results to expect, and where you might go for your design work.
Choose a web design model
Web design is a very saturated industry. This is good for you as a business owner or marketer, because you have a lot of room to find the perfect fit for your project.
Here are the most common providers of web design services:
Web design is filled to the brim with freelancers of varying capabilities. Freelancers will generally be the cheapest option, excluding certain well-known designers that are constantly sought after.
Working with a freelancer is usually more of an informal process, which is both good and bad. Good freelancers will be communicative, accommodating, and adhere to typical turnaround times on design work.
On the other hand, there are plenty of unprofessional freelancers that will do just the opposite.
The design agency
Agencies that specialize in web design are made up of small-medium sized design teams that work together on client projects.
Design agencies will usually be more expensive than freelancers because you’re paying for pooled expertise. Professional design agencies offer frequent communication, extreme customization, and quick turnaround times.
The full-service agency
As the name implies, a full-service digital marketing agency does web design alongside things like SEO, PPC advertising, and more. Full-service agencies are more expensive than freelancers, and may or may not be more expensive than specialized design agencies.
Full-service agencies are a great bet if you think you’ll be interested in digital marketing services beyond just web design. All of the specialized teams within these agencies work closely together, so that communication is simple and the final result will be cohesive.
Ask for references and a portfolio
This is the most important step in vetting a potential web design partner.
The entire purpose of a web design freelancer or agency is to create something that looks great for your business. The best way to tell if they’ll be able to deliver that is proof of past results.
Successful web design partners will maintain an extensive portfolio filled with examples of past work. The very best options won’t even have to “sell” you – their portfolio will make a convincing enough statement on its own!
A portfolio only tells one side of the story, however. Even if an agency produces stunning work, they may be incredibly difficult to work with. This is where references and testimonials come in.
Ideally, you want to ask for references within the same industry as you. They can relate directly to the type of work you want done, and will give you the inside scoop on whatever agency or freelancer you’re currently vetting.
You should be immediately wary of any web design prospect that can’t provide you with a portfolio and reference list upon request.
Ask lots of questions about their process
Many aspects of web design can be hard to understand if you’re not familiar with the industry.
The very best agencies and freelancers will have no problem sitting down and explaining exactly what they do, how they do it, and why it’s beneficial to your business.
If they’re using terminology you’re unfamiliar with and spouting wild promises, tell them to slow down and explain in more detail. Failure to do so is a big indicator that you should be cautious moving forward with that specific web design option.
Ambiguity in general is a red flag, and can be indicative of rushed work, “one size fits all” solutions, and shady sales tactics.
Don’t let a potential agency or freelancer pressure you into signing a contract right away. This is your money and your website, after all, and there’s no reason to feel bad about thoroughly exploring all of your potential design options.
Most web designers will happily give you a free quote or free consultation, and you should take advantage of every offer. This will give you a more comprehensive idea of what work is necessary to meet your vision, and how much it will cost you when everything’s said and done.
High pressure sales tactics, constant upselling, and pushy behavior are never promising signs when it comes to high quality web design.
Are you looking for professional web design services?
At WebpageFX, our expert team of web designers and Internet marketers has years of experience crafting custom design solutions for clients across the country. We know what it takes to make your website stand out, and we’d love to work with your business.
Contact us today for more information or a free quote!
Need professional web design services? Call 888.449.3239 or contact us online today to see how WebpageFX can improve your online performance.