We’d love to just say, “Hire The Belford Group!”
As easy as that would be, there’s a lot that goes into choosing someone to create the major marketing and communication tool for your company. Who you hire to create your company’s website is going to be the key between you having a good website that works right and having a hokey and ineffective website.
As you shop for the right web developer, there are a few issues to consider.
Look at the web developer’s online portfolio (by the way, if they claim to be a web developer but don’t have an online representation of their work … run).
Is what you see in that portfolio something you like for your own site?
Also look at their sites and compare them to our list of things to look for in a good website. Does the portfolio demonstrate that the web developer offers each of those components?
How will your website be stored? Will the web developer buy a domain and expect it to be hosted on a server located in “Somewhereselseville” or does the developer host its own server? The more access and control you can have over where your site is hosted, the better. If the web developer has a hosting option, you will be more likely to get better customer service and access to your site for potential changes or problem solving.
How does the web developer manage projects and does the developer have all the necessary skills to successfully create all aspects of your site? If you hire a freelancer, good chances are that they will only have a specific skillset. Even if they are fantastically talented in their area (and it’s a good chance they are…we’re not knocking freelancers), that’s one part of your site. Who is overseeing the process of putting the pieces together?
Unless you hire a web developer that has a team of experts who each take care of their own piece of building your site, you risk having a poorly managed site … or having to bother with managing the project yourself by orchestrating the efforts of many different people.
It’s also important to find out what happens to your site if something happens to your web developer. If they get sick or something else happens, does all work stop on your site? Getting the answer to this question and deciding what you are willing and able to accept is important.
This is usually one of the first questions we get asked … “how much do your websites cost?”
We know you’re on a budget, we all are these days! But don’t go into the website-hunting process using cost as your primary criteria. It’s better to determine a list of features you would like to have for your site then find out how much of your list can be accomplished with the budget you have in mind.
A few more thoughts in relationship to cost:
- Don’t go with the developer’s most expensive package just because it seems like the best. It may have way more bells and whistles than you really need.
- Don’t just go with the cheapest option because it costs the least amount of money. If it ultimately doesn’t serve your needs, you just paid for an ineffective tool.
- Don’t tell the web developer your budget up front and ask for a website that fits that budget.
The Belford Group is an experienced image-building marketing and website development agency, with more than a decade spent providing creative marketing and advertising solutions to fit any budget …and any medium. Our portfolio is filled with websites for various industries, using different styles and management systems.
Call us. We’d love to hear from you.