Taking up a website redesign project can be a daunting task for a business owner or marketing manager. There is a lot of complexity and discussions that have to be made in order to have a successful outcome. I’ve recently come across a few business people who have told me how they have been burned by their web designer when redesigning their website.
Weather it’s unmet expectations, poor quality work or unmet deadlines, too often people are left disappointed by the end result of their redesign project.
Here’s how not to get burned by your web designer.
You don’t need to be an expert, but having a grasp on where the web, social media and the internet in general is going is a good idea. Before you hire someone, give yourself a good 3-4 hours of study. Do this by reading top technology blogs like Mashable, and design blogs like Smashing Magazine. This will help you become prepared for hiring the right designer or firm.
Expect Good Communication
In any project, on the web or off, good communication is key to success. Be sure that when you are talking with your web designer that you have a good chemistry and communicate easily. This can save you from a ton of huge headaches in the future.
Expect A Thorough Quote
When getting quotes, expect a detailed one—not an email. There are some designers who, when asked for a quote, simply shoot off an email saying something like, “That would be around $xx,xxx”. This is a red flag, in my opinion. A designer who isn’t willing to put in the time to have a chat with you and write out a detailed quote on exactly what you are asking for, is more than likely not a professional. The communication will probably be poor and your expectations not met. Be sure to get a detailed quote that breaks dow exactly what you are getting, why you are getting it and the total investment involved.
Don’t Assume, Ask
If you are not sure if a certain feature is included in the quote, don’t just assume that it is. Ask your designer if that feature is going to end up in the final project. A good designer will gather the majority of the details of your project in the pre-bid discussions. Look over the features that are listed in the proposal/quote that is sent to you and ask questions if you are not sure if something is included. By default, extra features are not included, so be upfront and ask. This way you will get an accurate quote and wont be burned in the end.
Check The Portfolio
Look at previous work of the designer/studio to make sure that they have the experience necessary to bring your project from concept to reality. I’ve seen too many businesses hire “designers” with no portfolio or experience and regret it in the end. Even though the inexperienced designer may cost less, you need to see that they can deliver up-to or beyond your expectations. Many times, unfortunately, they cannot.
Overall, Expect Professionalism
Let’s face it, there is no shortage of people who can build a website for you. The question is, how are they going to do it, and how is the process going to be? Will you be pleased with the results? Are you going to enjoy the experience? If you do your due diligence and expect a friendly, professional experience, you will most likely get it and save yourself from getting burned.