Logo? Check. Business cards? Check. Website?....*tumbleweed*
So you've rebranded your business and now want to develop your online presence. Exciting! Finding the right web designer is one of the most daunting tasks you will have to undertake for your business. Your designer will be building your online identity and this, for many visitors, will be the first impression they have of you and your organisation.
There are many web designers and agencies out there and it can be confusing to find one that is the ideal fit for your business. So how do you cut through the crowd? Here are our 6 things to look for when hiring the best web designer for your business:
1) Track record -
Do they have any cracking testimonials? When picking a good web designer, always look for a strong portfolio full of imagination, innovation and variety. That way you'll know they have the technical skill, and creativity, to meet your needs. It's worth looking out for referrals too – you want someone who is reliable and who will meet your deadlines.
2) Research -
It all begins with research. Any designer worth their salt should have a good understanding of your business, your market position, competitors and any industry related trends that might affect you. Without research, how can the designer create a website that fits your own unique brand? It's helpful to do a bit of your own homework too, coming to design meetings with some websites or ideas in mind that inspire you. At Nemonet we provide all our clients with a handy website planner where you can jot down all your exciting ideas, demands and dreams. That way we'll build a website that is perfect for you from the beginning.
3) Responsive design –
All web designers should be able to demonstrate responsive design in their portfolio. With mobile usage on the rise, a responsive website that is user-friendly and flexible across all screen resolutions is vital for creating return business and building SEO (search engine optimisation) rankings. According to a recent survey, 67% of shoppers are more likely to buy from a website that is compatible with mobile devices than those that are not (GoGulf, 2015). Need more persuading? In 2015 Google started reducing non responsive websites in search engine rankings. So if your website isn't mobile-friendly, you'll be further back in the queue the next time a customer tries to find you!
4) Communication skills –
We've been there. Industry jargon is like a foreign language. A good web designer will have great communication skills, taking you through each step of the process in a way that you'll understand. It's vital that your designer keeps you updated on any progress and according to a 2017 survey, 77% of clients believe that their design agency could provide more added value communication ('What Clients Think', Up to the Light in association with the DBA). At Nemonet we always speak to clients in simple language, offering clear and reasonable terms from the outset. Keeping both client and agency expectations clear keeps crossed wires at bay.
5) Usability –
A website is never a one job investment. As your business grows your website should evolve with it. To have this flexibility web design should always be about the user, not the designer. Ideally, your new website should have a CMS (content management system) so that you can easily edit and add content to the site yourself. While there are some more complicated aspects that you might need a qualified designer to develop for you, a good website should have usability and be cost effective for the client. All our websites are made using a Squarespace template, which come with a built-in, easy to use CMS, so you'll always be able to update things yourself. We're only a phone call away for the tricky bits!
6) Location –
Think email has taken over from face-to-face interaction? Maybe it's heading that way, but at Nemonet we love being able to meet with our customers for a cup of tea and a chat. Working with a local design agency means that you can have a bit more control and can easily drop in for meetings. Most importantly, a local agency shares a commonality with your business and will have experienced similar successes and business problems. Based on the beautiful Isle of Wight, we understand what our customers need to flourish in this unique environment and beyond.
If you look for these 6 key things, you'll quickly hire the right web designer for your business. Based on the Isle of Wight and feeling like your website could do with a refresh? Give us a ring on 01983 810505 or drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org. We'd love to hear from you!