Selecting the right company to create your website is not as easy as it sounds. This is the first step of many towards online success, the wrong decision will cost you time and money. You will find the price range for a website design will vary from a few hundred dollars to thousands, also the included items will vary, some packages will include hosting, domains, while others may only include a simple template design.
The first important question to ask yourself before you start looking for a website design company is whether or not you prefer a face to face in person relationship with your website design company or whether you are happy with an email and phone relationship. This is a very important factor to consider.
Once you have decided on the above, the search can begin. If you are looking for an in person relationship, start your search locally, phone books, search engines or check out some other local business websites, most design companies put there name at the bottom of the homepage so if you find a site you like you can usually find who made it.
If you have decided to go with a email or phone relationship, start your search online. There are so many design companies these days, I would recommend not searching for website design companies but searching for sites in your industry which you like. By using the above mentioned method of finding a site you like and then the company that made it, you can usually find someone who can deliver the design style and components you are looking for.
Another important question to consider before you start contacting design companies is, does the web design company have an office and how long have they been operating? Many people work in or try website design part time, everyone knows someone who can make a website, but if you want real results a part time person may not have the experience and skills to deliver what you need. Additionally companies and people come and go in this industry, it is recommended to find someone who has been around for a few years or someone who is committed to there business for the long term.
Once you have selected a few companies, go ahead and contact them with what you require. A few things to watch, reply time – whether you are looking for a personally relationship or email and phone, if the company is interested in your business they should respond with in 48 hrs.
Be sure to request a few client referrals who you can contact with some questions on the website design companies services. Also review a variety of websites the company has made not just how they look but also the search engine positions of the sites. A good design is nice to have but worthless if no one can find it. Also at this point in time it is good to research the companies additional services to see if they can handle all the requirements for you online business into the future.
I have had and seen clients with 2 or 3 companies managing different aspects of a website whether it be design, maintenance, search engine optimization, shopping cart and hosting and it is a disaster and a costly mistake when made.
Be sure to check back soon for the next chapter which will include information on reviewing a design and service quote and the first steps of creating a professional design layout.