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It’s a bit tricky to find the right designer to get the job done for you in a timely manner, and who is not going to scam you. We have compiled a list of 14 key points to educate yourself on, so you know what to look for and ask, when searching for that right designer for your project.
1. Know what you want
Know what you want when starting a web project. Browse your competitors’ website design toronto. Do some research. Determine what you need and want, and make a list of all those features and functions. This is especially important when it comes to cutting down cost.
2. Establish a budget
Make sure to communicate your budget to designer/developer (especially if you do not want it to exceed a certain amount). A well informed and skilled developer will be able to access the project and advise you if the budget you’ve set is realistic enough to create a finished product to your liking, at that price.
3. Make a shortlist of potential website designers
Once you know what you want and have a budget, put together a shortlist of prospective web designers.
4. Ask to see portfolio and references
It’s helpful if the designer/developer is familiar with your industry, but not mandatory. A really good designer just needs a few links to sites that you like, and they should be able to replicate something similar. This is why some designer charge more too, because they can grasp your vision succinctly and get to the final product quickly. This will help tremendously in cutting down on the going back and forth in revisions (saving a lot of time in designing). This is a skill and talent that not all designers have, when interviewing designers, ask them how long it takes for them to get to the finished design. A really good one should be able to get the concept and direction in 1 or 2 mock ups (expect to pay more to get those designers, if you’re lucky enough to find one, because they are RARE!)
5. Put together a timeline
You probably want a website up and running sooner rather than later. However, in-demand designers may require a few months to finish a project. This is not necessarily bad. It means they are in-demand and do good work. That said, just because a web designer can get a site launched quickly doesn’t mean it will be bad either.
If you need your website launched by a certain date, include a bonus for timely completion and launch. The timeline is also dependent on the client as well, as they have a large role in the project. Clients are responsible to product final content text about their product/service that they are promoting on the site, provide images, review deliverables and get back to designer/developer. If clients do not do their part, this also slows down the whole project.
6. Ask how much hosting will cost
Designing and building a website is separate from hosting a site. Some designers/developers do it, others don’t. Don’t go cheap either, it’s not always the best. When your site goes down or it gets hacked. You’re going to NEED the support. So, if you’re going to go cheap, then cheap service is what you’re going to get.
7. Establish a budget for photographs
Clients are responsible for supplying photographs pertaining to their products and services. If none are available on the web, sometimes, we have to buy stock photos. Set a budget aside for this. Designers are responsible for graphics: icons, buttons, banners, backgrounds, images that can be produced by Photoshop and Illustrator, not from a camera.
8. Ask how much ongoing webmaster fees are
Don’t expect a webmaster to add blog posts and make changes for free. They generally charge an hourly rate. An alternative is to do it yourself or have a person in your employ do it. Some designers will provide tutorial videos. They may include this in the quote or charge separately. Ask them how you will go about managing your site.
9. Don’t restrict your search locally
The best talents can be hundreds if not thousands of miles away. The worst can be in your hometown. People often make the mistake of hiring people in their vicinity because they want face to face interactions or they have fear of being ripped off. The first issue you want to address is trust, integrity and professionalism. If the designer has all three, it shouldn’t matter where they are located, because at the end of the day, they will get the job done.
10. Don’t hire freelancers
Yes, freelancers are cheap, but an inferior product or customer experience is what you’re going to get when working with one. Freelancers do work, when they HAVE time to get to it, which means if you have paid them good money and they have other priorities, like their full time job or other commitments. They’ll get to your project when it’s convenient for them. If they are not doing it as their full time job and they are doing this in their spare time, they haven’t got a set schedule, hence this is why they are flaky and hard to get a hold of.
It’s best to work with a team, a project leader/manager, a designer and a developer. The workload is split up, things will go smoother and faster. You have a project leader that communicates with client, giving updates on the project, a designer that does the graphics, and a coder that builds the site. Working with a team is best, because there’s more structure, and organization. For a freelancer to do all three task can be a bit overwhelming, compounded by demanding clients from various projects. It’s a sure recipe for disaster.