There are many people on internet who call themselves as web designers and web design companies. Many people do it for fun, as a hobby or part-time. Web design companies full-time operations are way to go.. Web design companies doing it for living will take your project seriously. Make sure your web design company has done enough research on internet technologies.
5 firm steps for finding the right Web design company for you
- Assess your needs:
A professional Web design company will work with you rather than for you. It will help you in defining your organization’s requirements. Still, you should have a basic idea of what your web site can do for you. Will it serve as an informative catalog? Will it grab new clients? Will it strengthen relationship with your existing clients? Will it serve the needs of your workers?
There are few initial requirements your organization should aware of:
The intended audience for the Web site
The intended goal of the project
Anticipated budget for the Web site
How the project will fit into a larger marketing/corporate scheme
The individuals/departments within your organization responsible for the project These initial requirements will help you finding web design firm best suited for your project. You should document them and use them as a basis for evaluating each web design firm. This document will serve as your benchmark to measure each web design firm.
- List Generation:
You can use many ways to search web design firm. There are strengths and weaknesses on selecting a method to search for web design firm. Combination of different approaches will be your best bet in hunt of web design firm for your project.
Competitors’ web sites:
Look for web sites of organizations that you like, mainly web sites of your competitors. Sometimes you have to look for web sites other than your industry. Mostly, web design firm includes site credits (example: developed by UNDERSIGNED). You can simply visit web design firm’s web site and carry on your analysis. If you cannot find the credits on the site, feel free to contact the organization and ask which Web design firm is responsible for the web site? You can at least have some comments about that web design firm from the organization you will be contacting.
Ask your Social Circle and Family:
Ask your friends, colleagues and family which web design firm designed their web site, or if they otherwise recommend a web design firm. Find out what they liked or disliked about web design firm and about web site they developed for them. Few companies’ produces better results when they are given Start-Finish task while few are more inclined towards doing particular task.
- Short List
By considering above mentioned you organization should create a short list of 4-5 web design firms that are best suited for your project.
Evaluate their work:
When its said evaluate, it means you have to evaluate their portfolio, kind of web sites they have developed. If you want to sell products online, you should look for proven eCommerce solutions web design firm has developed.
It’s essential that you research a web design firm’s work so you can evaluate their potential and quality standards. A web site does not have to be flashy or very interactive to hit the deck, but you must appreciate web design firm’s design sense. Also, consider hiring a firm familiar with your particular industry.
When evaluating web design firms, note geographical location of their clients. A Web design firm that has worked with clients in many geographical locations will have a more global approach to your Web site.
Don’t select a freelancer for your project on a freelance basis, to design and develop your organization’s web site. It is rare to find a single person capable of handling all development, visual, technical and web marketing elements that make an effective web presence. More over, by depending on an individual, your organization is at risk of losing its time and money should anything occur to that one individual?
Determine what other products/services the Web design company can offer
What kind of value-added products or services can the design firm offer? Internet Marketing and Web site promotion? Newsletter or email campaigns? If your organization is not currently dealing with a print design agency, for example, this might be a factor for dealing with one group over another. Similarly, can the firm provide database and software development should your organization wish to Web-enable some of its existing systems or processes?
During this stage, your organization should make contact with the potential Web design firms that are on your shortlist.
- Get Quote/Proposals
Good web design firm will always be ready to submit a proposal for your website along with defined timeline, deliverable and terms & conditions. When evaluating proposal, look how they communicate with you using their website and digital documents.
Maintain a list for each proposal, consisting of its strengths and weaknesses, and the strengths and weaknesses of the respective Web design firm based on its other materials (Web site, portfolio, brochure, case studies, etc.).
- Evaluate Proposals
After your organization has received all proposals, review and compare them with each other. How do they fare in terms of presentation? Do they present upgrade paths for your project, going beyond the needs of the immediate goals outlined?
- Think ahead.
Over the past year, many of web design companies of different sizes have emerged, closed their operations or cut back. It’s important to ask web design company about long-term relationship.