Making choices is tough, especially for business owners. You’re expected to make all the choices to keep your business running and make your employees happy, so they can, in turn, keep your customers happy and coming back for more.
You know exactly how to do this; you are the master of your domain. However, you know nothing about domains — HTTPs, HTMLs and any other abbreviated word a techie would say. When it comes building a website, it can be tricky; there are a lot of questions to ask, especially when partnering with someone else.
To make sure you don't get taken advantage of, here are 10 questions to ask when researching web designers.
1. What services do you offer?
This is a great first question. You need to find out if you are getting a static site that's just going to exist on the internet for a couple of years or a fully functional site that collects data and offers value to existing and future customers. If you are interested in the latter, I suggest asking if they offer an internet marketing package.
2. Can you show me examples of sites you have created in the past?
This is an easy way to get to know the web designer you are working with. Not only should you decide if you like their style but also look to see if it passes the “Grunt Test.”
People should be able to look at your website and quickly understand what you do — i.e. in three short grunts, caveman style. Make sure the designer’s messaging is clear and concise. If you confuse people, they will bounce off your site very quickly.
3. What CMS will you use?
There are many choices of CMS (Content Management Systems) available. Every CMS has its pros and cons.
Here at ROI, we use HubSpot for everything. HubSpot allows you to create complete marketing campaigns, enroll contacts in workflows, make sure they are getting relevant offers, as well as manage your sales funnel and track leads. Its inbound methodology is an excellent approach for anyone wanting to try something new with their marketing.
4. Will I be able to edit my website myself?
If you are looking to make easy updates to your website in the future and don't want to learn code, then a CMS is your best option. Ask the web designer to show you how to use it and make updates.
If you don't have the time to do all of this, consider a retainer with your web designer for maintenance and campaigns. HubSpot uses a COS (Content Optimization System) that makes building pages very easy. They also offer HubSpot Academy, where you can learn how to set up workflows, edit content and much more.
5. Will my website be compatible with smartphones and tablets?
You want to make sure your web designer understands responsive and mobile design.
Nearly 88 percent of ROI Online’s traffic comes through mobile phones. And 56 percent of all internet traffic in general comes from mobile phones. Your site should look just as good on a phone as it does on a computer screen.
6. Do you custom design your websites or use a template?
There is no right or wrong answer; everyone has different needs.
At ROI, we always start with a wireframe and a mockup of how your pages will look. We want you to be an important part of the process. Our wireframes are very simple, but we want your user to have an amazing experience and leave your website feeling fulfilled.
7. How many pages will the site be?
This will all depend on your needs. Some businesses may need five pages, while others may need 20.
ROI Online follows the Growth-Driven Design philosophy. We launch your website as a foundational site, with just your core pages moving forward, and roll out the next pages in phases. That way, we can track the progress of your site through analytics and not just guess what pages are performing well.
8. How long will this project take?
What may normally take up to six months (hopefully, with good communication) takes ROI Online around 90 days. With our Growth-Driven Design and StoryBrand approach, we have shortened our time and are focused on getting the most important pages and messaging up, with the most impact for you and your customers.
9. Who will be working on our project?
Depending on who you hire, a web designer can be one person or a whole team. Traditionally, when partnering with an agency, you will have a content writer, web designer, web developer, and project manager all on your team.
At ROI Online, you will have all of this along with Basecamp, a productivity tool we use so you can see how your project is rolling along in real time.
10. I already have a website; what are you going to do to it?
We know you might be a little skeptical about losing your web presence, but don't worry. Your old website will not be taken down until your new one is completely ready!
At ROI Online, we will analyze the data from your site as much as we can, and run a PIE (Potential, Importance, and Ease) analysis on your existing pages. We will calculate the PIE score and create your initial launchpad site based on the facts and data we find.
What's a launchpad site and why is it important? Watch the video to find out!
Now that you know all the important questions to ask, come chat with us at ROI Online! We will provide you with our solution to all of these questions with a team of experts that helps clients achieve success! Contact us today for a free strategy session.