Often web design projects end badly. How can you and the web design company avoid this?
By starting right.
You may or may not know much about web designing. To start right you first need to know the right questions you should be asking a web design company that you plan to hire.
Things to talk about before starting a web design project
The list is a big one, but highly recommended. This will help you decide and communicate to the agency what you really want.
Agencies love clients who do their research and are absolutely clear on deliverables. This helps them build confidence in the project, give you an accurate quote, match your expectations and give you a clear timeline for the project.
- Make sure you tell the agency about your business. How it operates? Your unique selling proposition. Ideal customers. How you want customers to see the business? Why should customers engage with you rather than working with your competitors? And more.
- A list of pages you want on the site. For ideas you can visit competitor sites.
- How do you feel the new website should contribute to your business? Will it just provide company information? Or help you attract and acquire more customers? Sell online? Or maybe re-engage existing customers to build customer loyalty?
- Who produces the content? This is best done by the agency. No doubt you know your business better than anyone. But that does not mean you do not need content writing services. You can always give a brief to the agency and professional copywriters can produce content that is consumable, powerful, delivers value and motivates visitors to take certain actions.
- How your products and services help solve problems?
- Crafting a powerful slogan. You need a slogan. A few powerful words that describe what makes your business special or highlights your company’s promise. You may consider doing this yourself. But we recommend you consult a marketing communications expert for this.
- Buyer personas. This is where you define your customers. Few common ways to segment customers are on the basis of their age, location, interest, gender and income. The agency should know who all will visit the site.
- Share the budget you have for the project.
- Point of contact – Who does the agency coordinate with? Often projects lag because of delays in interaction. Define who the agency should get in touch with for project discussions. Designing a website requires agency client interactions. Make sure they are smooth.
- Timeline – When to expect delivery? Ask the agency for the time they will take to build the site. Web design projects can be divided into many phases depending on the size of the project. A few common phases to classify the project could be research, designing, development, testing and migration. Ask the agency how much time would each phase would take? And make sure to follow up.
- Would you need a CMS to manage your site? The answer has to be yes. CMS stands for content management systems. These are used to develop sites. In 2015, with so many open source CMS’s available, there is no reason for you to have a site without one. CMS’s make it super easy for non technical folks to manage their sites. Think about it, if one day you want to make some quick changes to the site, would you prefer finding web developers to make the changes or do it yourself for free.
- Do you have a logo? Are you looking for a logo redesign?
- Share 5 sites you like. This helps designers to understand how you want your site to look.
- Managing website inquiries. When customers send you a message, what email IDs should receive the message.
- Search engine optimization. Share a few search terms that you believe customers will use to find your products and services. Search marketers refer to these as seed keywords. These are used to research keywords, plan site architecture and opportunities to acquire traffic.
- Promoting the site. Designing the website is the first step. After it is ready, how do you market it? Ask the agency for opportunities to get exposure, traffic and conversions with digital marketing services.