A website is the first thing consumers see when they want to buy a product, find out about a service or obtain information online. At the very least, it should look professional, neat and updated with accurate content.
Anyone can build a website these days. There are companies that will allow you to do it yourself in a matter of days or even a few hours. However, whether you sell clown supplies or coon traps, your website not only needs to stand out from the competition, it also needs to operate properly.
Here are important questions you should ask before hiring a website design company:
1. Does Your Company Use Custom Designs or Templates?
Just because a web design business is professional, that doesn’t mean they don’t use templates. You can get attractive templates for your website, but if you prefer a customized look, see if the design company offers this. A custom-made website will cost more but it offers more flexibility in structuring your site around your company’s needs and your personal desires.
2. How Much Does the Company Charge?
With website design, fees for other services could be included. If you need a domain name, some companies will offer this in a package deal. Prices can also be determined by other factors such as storage space, bandwidth, mobile capability and email addresses. Typically, the bigger the business, the more features it would need.
3. Is Web Hosting Offered?
Most web design companies also offer hosting but it’s best not to assume this, so ask anyway. It’s convenient to have one company offer both hosting and website design.
4. What Kind of Tech Support Do You Give?
If there is something wrong with your site, you need to be able to contact the company. Ask about future maintenance terms on the site. Some companies do not offer phone support as a way of contact but provide virtual chat or email. If you prefer to call someone, then it’s best to find another company that offers this.
5. Can I See a Portfolio?
You always want to see other work that a website design company has completed before hiring them. Some people have different ideas of what a professional site should look like and if their themes don’t match what you’re looking for, it’s best to move on.
6. How Do I Make Updates?
You will want the ability to go into your site at any time and make changes. A CMS (content management system), will allow you to do so and it’s fairly easy to learn. If you have to contact the designer in order to make a simple change, look for another service.
7. Are Websites Tested in Multiple Web Browsers?
You want your website to be displayed the same on all web browsers such as Safari, Google Chrome, Internet Explorer and Firefox. You designer or company should be familiar with all browsers and know how to test them so your website can be easily and properly shown on each of them.