There are many web designers out there competing for your business, so it can be a daunting prospect to choose the right one for you. They range from your nerdy nephew to local web designers, corporate providers like Fairfax or Telstra to overseas designers on global freelancing platforms like Upwork and Freelancer.
So let's break them down.
I’m worried that when Using a Digital savvy friend or relative, they mightn’t be a competent website designer, because they don’t understand digital marketing best practices or design.
Try to avoid an amateur website designer. Seriously, you’re better off postponing building the site. There’s a long list of reasons why an amateur website designer will give you headaches.
A local web designer gives you the benefit of better communication regarding the project, the ability to easily collect testimonials, and they might have more knowledge about the local market,
Big corporates such as Telstra, Sensis and Fairfax offer quick turnaround sites that include from a basic 3-page site to full-blown e-commerce stores. The plus is that they will do all of the work for you.
The downside is that they are a lot less personal with you and don’t know your target market and the problems that you will be solving for them on your site.
You will be more likely to be buying a brochure site than a site that converts customers. You will need to supply all of the text for the site to help make it perform.
You can always employ a freelance web designer on popular sites like Upwork or Freelancer. If everything goes to plan this can save you good money, but it also comes at another cost, your sanity.
You will still need a scope of work and post the job online. Then check the freelancers' profile, their past jobs and feedback. If you go with a designer from your a more developed country, chances are you won't be saving a lot as they will be on similar wage cost as your local designer.
If you decide to outsource the job to an overseas country, there are always the problems of miscommunication and time differences which means the process can take twice as long and even more frustration.
So enter into this at your own risk.
Here’s the big question
Do you even need a web designer at all?
If you are starting out or are somewhat familiar with technology, then you could just build your website using a Do it yourself site like Weebly, Wix or Spotify.
There are already over 150 million do it yourself websites online, so you may well be able to build your successful site using a predesigned template, and watching youtube videos on how to put it all together.
Then down the track, you can expand the existing site or move to a site with more features when the business becomes more financial.
If you have decided to go with a DIY web builder, you could just finish the course here, but stick with it because I go through most essential qualities your website needs to get found and convert customers.
So now you have decided on what type of web designer you want to use, then take a look at their showcase of previously built sites, and think about their design and layouts.
You could even contact their clients and ask them about their experiences and recommendations about dealing with the website designer. Don’t just trust the customer feedback on designers site.
Ask the developer if they have built any websites for a business that is in direct competition with yours. If they have done their job correctly, they will have optimised the other site for SEO, usability and targeted the critical target market or personas.
So, how could they possibly build another website that would be using the same SEO, the same target market and the same website goals in direct competition with each other?
If they are happy to build a site for you in direct competition with another site, then I highly recommend finding yourself another web developer.
Pay attention to how much they ask you about YOUR BUSINESS. They should want to get to know you and your business inside and out.
Otherwise How else can they design a site that reflects you, your brand, and your business, unless they spend the time to get to know your business.
Your website is crucial to the success of your business. By doing extensive interviewing of potential website designers, you’re more likely to pick one that can do the work you want, is willing to listen to you really, can create a site that reflects you and your business, and keeps within your budget and timeframe.