You’ve done all of the dirty work: you’ve come up with a great website concept, contacted potential customers, and you’ve even thought of interesting ways to advertise. Now, all that is left to do is hire a competent web designer. Simple, right? Wrong. Failure to find the right web designer could make or break your concept. After years of fixing the mistakes of other web designers, I’ve created a list of things you should avoid when hiring a web designer.
1. Not Understanding What You are Signing up For
One of the biggest, if not the biggest, mistake you can make when choosing a web designer is not fully understanding what you are paying for and how much you are paying. Countless web design companies use the magic words “as low as” or “starting from” when describing their prices. It is up to you to find out exactly how much it is going to cost for your project. Ask questions and never settle for general estimates. Similarly, it is important to know the difference between web design and web development. Web design could simply include the graphical display of the web page–without any coding at all. Make sure you ask your web designer which service he/she is providing.
2. Afraid to Ask for Revisions
When having a website designed, it is important to remember that you have hired someone to do a job. While that may seem simple, many people fail to remember this when it comes to asking for revisions. If you are not happy with the design produced, do not be afraid to tell the designer exactly what you want changed. Ultimately, this web page will be a reflection of you and your business and you want it to convey the right message. Make sure that a designer is open to providing revisions before they are hired.
3. Settling on the First Design
No matter how great the first design looks, never settle! Wait to see the other ideas that the designer has before making a decision. Often times, something as small as changing the page layout can make all the difference with the usability of the website. It is also important to get outside feedback, from either friends or your target market, on the designs you are interested in. While a bright lime-green page might look great to you, your target market could disagree.
4. Hiring Just One Designer
This is critical: do not use a single designer! In my experience, the creativity of design that I received from a team of designers was far superior to that of a single designer. This is simply because a team of designers can give you 10 different perspectives on a design whereas a single designer is limited. Also, one single designer could have dozens of projects to complete in a very short time; leaving little time to focus on your project. The best part is that you don’t have to pay more to have a team of designers. Companies such as Webfor200.com have teams of designers that charge single-designer prices.
5. Paying Too Much
Despite what you may have read before, a website DESIGN does not cost thousands of dollars. Shop around to find the best quotes before settling on a price. With websites, higher prices do not always translate into better work. The web development world is filled with massive egos. Getting multiple quotes is the easiest way to avoid the fluff.
Quick Tip: having the website design and coding completed separately could end up saving you money. Why? The truth is, some web programmers are not graphic designers and some graphic designers are not programmers. Many professionals will be better at one than the other. A designer might charge you more to do both the programming and the design if they are not skilled in both areas. To use this trick, simply find someone to design your site and then find a web developer to code that design separately.