Choose the right web designer and everything else should run smoothly, leaving you with a beautiful website that delivers real returns and gives you something decent back to you for your investment. Always get client references and call these people if you can to get an honest appraisal. Any good web design company will be happy to provide several references. They will be somewhat transparent in this sense. This is because they will have some good past work to be able to show off.
Research as much as you can, this is key
As a small business owner, you should conduct proper market research, read customer reviews, and compare rival costs to ensure you are sourcing the best, highest-quality designer for your own website. Why should you do this? Well, choosing a good website designer will help ensure that visitors have positive interactions with your brand. And, if you own a small ecommerce business, a savvy designer will know how to make it simpler and more alluring for your users to make purchases – a win-win!
Poor design, on the other hand, can have a disastrous effect on your business. According to a 2021 survey by TopDesign Firms, 42% of consumers will leave a website because of bad functionality. So finding an experienced designer that is aware of common pitfalls and knows how to delight users is a crucial first step to setting up your business website.
After sales support is very important
Web design companies are typically creative or specialist developer agencies that work to deliver projects to different clients. You should use a design company if you want a quicker turnaround time and better communication. Design companies also typically work closely with branding and marketing teams, which means you’ll get support with aesthetics and SEO as well as web functionality. Because of benefits like these, a design company will usually be more expensive than a freelancer – so it won’t always be the best option for SMEs. But a web design company will not only create your website – it will also help manage it long term.
A clean design is a must
One of the most important things to remember during the process of website development is to create a clean, appealing design. A quality design is attractive and easy to read with intuitive navigation. Most importantly, a clean design helps viewers focus on the value of your brand and content instead of distracting graphics and large amounts of text. Often, customers associate website designs with the quality of a particular company or product. Hence, a clean design is vital to providing a positive user experience that encourages customers to return.
Good branding will make all the difference
Branding is important to all businesses, both large and small. The design and placement of your brand’s logo contributes to a viewer’s overall opinion. Professionally designed logos successfully catch the customer’s eye and provide a clear picture of the brand’s unique voice. Choose a location on your site that is readily visible to visitors, such as the upper left corner, since this is where the eye naturally begins to scan a website. To further solidify your brand’s identity, consider using the same logo on packaging, print advertising, and branded apparel. When a business is consistent with branding, it provides customers with an integrated and memorable brand experience.
Calls to action – very vital for conversion
Placing calls to action on your website encourages customers to contact your business. A friendly suggestion, such as “Contact us today!” demonstrates that your business wants to develop a relationship with its customers. It’s important that calls to action are appropriate for a visitor’s level of engagement with your company. If they’re just discovering your brand, invite them to subscribe to your email newsletter. If they’re already a loyal customer, perhaps they’ll enjoy participating in your brand’s loyalty rewards program. Regardless of what you’re asking visitors to do at your site, always include a call to action at least once on each page.
The website should be able to work and load across multiple browsers
As technology progresses, the number of internet browsers is steadily growing. From Internet Explorer and Chrome to Firefox and Safari, it can be frustrating to keep up with them all. When creating a website, it’s vital to ensure that your website is reachable from multiple browsers. Specifically, your site should load properly on all major browsers – including older versions. Failing to take this step may exclude a large section of your customer base, which can be a costly consequence for a growing business.
Think about what the website needs to do now – and in the future
The first thing to do is to produce a specification for your project. In it, talk about what you want your site to do – or rather, what you want the user to be able to do on the site. If you have a vision of how they do it (ie the user journey), describe it. The spec may also involve providing some background on your company’s broader aims. If you’re not sure about something, include it. You don’t want to give someone who is trying to cost and deliver your project any nasty surprises. Assume everything is a big deal – for example, you should certainly say so if you want to sell anything directly from your site – there are a whole host of considerations that come with eCommerce which you may not be aware of. You also need to think about the future.
Consider how the website may need to change as your business grows. If you’ll be uploading a lot of content to the website, make sure you get enough disk space with the hosting included in the package. Finally, if they recommend a particular content management system (eg WordPress, Drupal, ModX) seek assurances that the site will be easy to amend in future years.
Choosing the right agency
When choosing a web design agency, it’s important to check the different services that they offer. Ideally, they should offer a wide range of services that will enable them to meet all your requirements and needs. A good web design agency should offer a variety of different services variety of different services alongside web design and development such as SEO, app development, digital marketing, website maintenance, and branding. This allows you to easily ensure that all your company’s web design needs can be met in the same place without the need to work with several different companies. As a business owner, you know that having a professional and well-built website can make all the difference to your success. When searching for the right web design agency to do this for you, these are just some of the most important things to look for.
Overall, what you need to take into consideration
One final point to end on – if you reach out to a few providers, and it all seems a bit too complex or expensive, there are other options – you don’t necessarily need a custom built website. Thanks to website builders such as SquareSpace, anyone can build their own website. It won’t be completely bespoke, and you need to be careful that your chosen platform caters for all the functionality you need, but it’s possible to get a good looking website live in a matter of hours for a modest monthly or annual fee, which typically includes hosting. You can also purchase basic web design from a hosting company, 1&1’s Ionos is one such example.