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5 questions to ask a prospective web design firm

5 questions to ask a prospective web design firm

Thinking of hiring a professional website design firm? Good idea.

Investing in the experience and talents of professional web designers is never a bad idea.

But that doesn't mean all design firms are created equal.

So here are a few questions you should always ask prospective designers to make sure your project gets the care it deserves.

1. Who's your team?

This essential first question contains a number of sub-questions: How much experience do you have? What are your corporate values? Is all the work handled in house, or do you sometimes outsource to contractors for development? How long has the team been working together? Will there be a project manager dedicated to my site?

You'll want to know exactly who you'll be working with and that they have the expertise to get the job done right. And skills aren't the only thing a good web design team needs. According to veteran creative director Ed Roberts, a high-performing team will also adhere to a well-defined set of core values. The right team will be able to explain these to you without missing a beat.

It's also important that you're in direct contact with the people developing your site and not middle-manned by a firm outsourcing to a third party who you haven't vetted. Finally, you'll want to know that any questions or issues you have will be handled efficiently and professionally by a point person dedicated to your account.

online marketing agency web design firmAll good firms will be able to give you a clear idea of their
design process from conception to completion.

2. What's your design process?

Any firm worth its salt will have perfected a clear and detailed design process to maximize efficiency. They'll also be able to give you a step-by-step breakdown of this process along with benchmarks and a precise timeframe for completion. You should also ask the company's references (see question 4) about the time-to-completion versus what they were quoted during negotiations.

3. Can you build my site "mobile-ready"?

According to most experts, we've long passed the mobile tipping point with most of the world now getting media on their smartphones rather than computers. Your developer should be well aware of this and willing and ready to build your site so that it functions flawlessly across a range of platforms, especially phones and tablets.

>> Learn more about the impact that mobile and responsive website design can have on the performance of your site and your ability to attract new visitors: Read our blog article, "Mobile optimized vs. responsive web design: What's the difference?"

4. Can you provide a portfolio and references?

Not much else to say here. Before you invest, you'll want to see what they company can do and has done, and hear about the process from a disinterested third party.

professional website designers internet marketing companiesThe right firm will not only answer your questions but also have some queries of its own.

5. What questions do you have for me?

When hiring a web design firm, you should not be the only one with queries. For the company to have a clear idea of budget and timeframe, they'll need to ask a ton of questions about the scope and details of the project. In fact, with a solid firm, you shouldn't even have to ask this last question; they'll be so eager to get the job done right that they'll do most of the asking.

Whether you're building a new website or just looking to improve your current one, it's important that you take the steps needed to get the most out of your investment. When it comes to web design, just a few simple questions should tell you whether or not you're talking to the pros.

Download our growth-driven design eBook to learn more about how our agile and data-driven web design strategy can give your organization the website you need.

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