10 Questions To Ask Your Prospective Web Designer

It can be a daunting task setting up your on-line presence for most. The whole prospect of talking about “domain-name registration”, “hosting services”, “arranging content”, “payment gateways” and “merchant accounts” etc… can seem a totally alien experience for even those initiated with plenty of on-line experience.

So, to help those that are seriously thinking about getting their business hosted on the Internet here are some Top Ten Tips you should be asking a Web Company before you consider taking on their service.

1) “How long have you been in business?”

While there is nothing wrong with going to a one man start up company (we all started somewhere) you may feel safer going with an established company where you can gather testimonials and feel more secure that the company has a history with hosting etc. You don’t want to lose your hard-earned website if the developer decides to close down.

2) “Do you have a portfolio?”

First and foremost you have to see samples of work, without seeing this how do you know the Web Developer can do what you’re asking? Also, make sure these are live sites and that they actually work!

“Do you have any testimonials?”

All good should be able to provide you with testimonials from previous satisfied clients. An established web design company will be happy to provide you with a list of testimonials if requested.

4) “Who works for you and can I meet them?”

You need to know that the company you are hiring can deliver what they claim, ask questions such as “What are your designers histories?” and “How many years of experience do they have in this field?”. While all companies out-source at one point or another you need to be safe in the knowledge that your prospective company has staff on hand to deal with urgent queries etc and do not constantly have to rely on a freelancer. Finally, any company worth their salt will willingly let you go into their office and meet with the designers, beware of companies who refuse…what are they hiding?

5) “What is the process in developing a site?”

You and the web design company have to be clear right from the word go what part each of you have to play in developing the site. At certain points your designer will require content and feedback from yourselves and you have to be aware when this will be required.

6) “What happens if I need changes?”

All websites will need updated at one point or another, find out whether this is included in the price or an additional cost.

7)”What can you do to make my site visible?”

If your web design company also offers Search Engine Optimization and you are considering this service, ask if it’s possible to have a short meeting with the SEO specialist. You’ll know quickly if they are up to scratch and they should also be able to supply you with previous Search Engine reports and show signs of successful SEO results.

8) “Do I own my site at the end?”

You don’t want to go through the process of developing a website only to lose the rights to it if you decide to get hosting from another company after a few months. Ask if its possible to obtain a full copy of your website on completion.

9) “What software/languages do you use?”

You probably don’t really care about the answer to this but it is good for you to know your site will be created using industry standard software etc to allow the files to be worked on at a later date with a different company if needs be. Look for software names such as Adobe Macromedia and try to get developers with more than just basic HTML knowledge such as ASP, PHP – should you wish to upgrade your site to a dynamic site it will comfort you to know that your designer will be able to oblige without you having to go elsewhere.

10) “Do you provide hosting?”

All good web design agencies should be able to set you up with hosting and emails and you shouldn’t feel that you are paying over-the-top for this service. If they say they can’t and you feel the costs are high then be extremely suspicious!

Hiring A Web Designer – What To Look Out For

An unprofessional looking website can cause serious damage to your brand’s reputation, the quality of visitors and volumes of sales. A few dollars saved in web design could cost you losses in millions! Is compromising on web design really worth it?

Hire an expert team of dedicated web designers that has several years of experience in web designing. In addition ensure your web designer can design a high quality end product which is truly reflective of your brand. Does your web designer use state-of-the-art, innovative technology that truly brings a value-add to your site? Hire a web designer with a difference. Make sure they don’t cut corners when it comes to web design. That means no scratchy images, no cluttered web pages – just a clean, professional looking site that is representative of your brand.

Does your designer offer a first-class service that is designed to suit your unique needs. You can also just ask to customize your existing site to make it harmonious with your business goals. Ask you web designer to help enhance your online presence with search engine optimization services. Is you web designer one of the best in their field – and does it show? Can they provide a portfolio that shows how they have helped numerous clients improve their brand perception and enhance client relationships as well.

Ensure your web developer specialize in creating stunning, engaging web pages, and we also help provide a highly-interactive interface to your clients. This goes a long way in generating more leads and hence more sales for your business. Web sites should always have easy navigability, attractive interfaces and highly optimized content – which attract more traffic. Does your web designer take web design very seriously. After all web designing should only be executed by a thorough professional.

Why not try MyConsulting Melbourne Australia? Our web design services at MyConsulting are truly end-to-end. This means we cater to every spectrum of the web design segment. Right from search engine optimization, to design and layout of the web pages, to even using impressive graphics to add visual appeal – we at MyConsulting can help you with all these functions. That’s one reason we are a web designer Melbourne that provides holistic and comprehensive services.

Find out how we can complement your business to help you stay ahead in the competition.

10 Important Questions To Ask Your VA Before They Develop Your Website

I think VAs (Virtual Assistants) can have an important role in an entrepreneur’s business. They can help out with many tasks that are often not something that busy people want to do, nor can do.

VAs can be very handy with managing calendars, sorting through dozens of emails, doing minor website updates and even helping manage campaigns to ensure all the moving pieces are all lined up.

But even with all the ways that a VA can help you out, there are some areas of your business that you have to be careful about and not just hand over to them, hoping things will miraculously materialize with little involvement from you.

One of those critical areas is the development of your website.

Lately I am hearing more and more about business owners having their VA (or business manager or even doing it themselves for that matter) put up their website for them. I’m going to assume it’s either because of the convenience of having someone on your team do it or because it’s more cost effective than hiring a website developer.

And it’s because of this that I feel compelled to express caution… As mentioned, VAs can play a vital role in a business operations, but in my experience, most who say they can do your website for you have either:

a) Installed a pre-built WordPress theme or two and have figured out how to install plugins, making them think this is all they need to know to put up a website.
b) Got a buddy they will delegate the work to and make a profit off of the work done.

Sure, there could be more qualified VAs who know a bit more than that, but think about it, if they knew enough to be a web developer, then I would question why are they doing VA work and not developing websites for a living?

So before you say “sure” to having a VA put up your website for you, here are some questions to ask them first:

1) Can they prepare an in-depth target market analysis so that it’s clear on who your website needs to appeal to?
2) Are they well versed with Branding and Graphic Design? Do they know how to properly optimize images on your site so they download quickly on slower Internet speeds and smart phones?
3) Do they know what kind of layout design that would best suit your business and target market?
4) Are they knowledgeable in SEO? (Not just knowing about keywords, but all of the aspects that come with building an SEO friendly website.)
5) What do they know about programming? If something went wonky, would they know how to fix it? Can they do any customization to your website beyond what is provided in the purchased theme?
6) Are they aware of what makes a website responsive so that it looks proper on smart phones and other devices?
7) Do they understand fundamental copywriting principles when writing for the web?
8) Do they study marketing? What is their education, experience and do they understand your industry well enough?
9) Are they aware of all the different features and functionalities that could be used to best enhance your site or do they only know a select few plugins?
10) Do they know other CMS platforms other than WordPress that might work better for your needs?

Building a website requires someone with knowledge far beyond simply being able to install a WordPress theme. And in actuality, it’s rare that a single person possesses all of the knowledge and expertise required to create a fully functioning website.

These necessary skill sets range from brand and user experience design (UED, UXD and information architecture design), to HTML/XHTML, CSS knowledge and ideally some programming, SEO expertise, copywriting skills, and of course, marketing know-how since your website is your central marketing piece of your business.

So before embarking on a website project, consider carefully all of the areas of expertise needed to create a successful website that is fully supporting your business and portraying it in a way that will attract your target market and convert them into buyers.

While having a website up is all that you think you need, the journey on how you get there is paramount to how functional and successful it will be. This is not the time to pass off this important component of your business to someone who is not fully qualified to do the work.

Instead, be actively involved in finding a qualified web developer or development firm to take you through the journey that will result in an excellent representation of your business and get you the results you’re wanting.

To your success,