LET’S START WITH THE RISKS
Don’t Risk Your Business with a Web Design Company From Hell
While we won’t dwell here long, the biggest issue with working with a web design company from hell is that they are often not even an official business or company.
It’s often a friend’s cousin, someone starting out or someone who’s a bit nerdy and likes ‘playing around’ with designing websites in their spare time.
The Cost of Cutting Costs with a Web Design ‘Dabbler’
If someone claims they ‘dabble in web design’, this is your first sign of inexperience. You’ll likely learn that they treat it more like a hobby and that your business is not their priority. We understand, when first starting out in business, it’s idealistic to save money on every aspect of setting up our business. Your web design and digital marketing might seem like great places to cut corners in the early days, however there’s a BIG difference between simply starting small with your website, vs choosing the cheapest ‘non’ web design company hack out there. A big website for a low price generally indicates a lack of inclusions, quality and expertise. When it comes to putting together a quality website design, knowledge and experience in Google ranking, and digital marketing matters.
Our article on the 3 Reasons Why To Go Local with your web designer compares choosing a local web design company vs an off shore provider.
“Time and time again, I hear the horror stories of ‘I had my website built by my brother’s friend, who dabbles in web design over a year ago and it’s never been finished’ or ‘my sister-in-law built my site and now it’s been hacked’. These stories make me cringe. Like you wouldn’t trust a dentist to work on your car, handing your website over to someone without the design, technical and marketing experience to establish and manage the website that you need is super risky and can prove more expensive in the long run.“
~ Karen Ahl
NOW, WHAT TO LOOK OUT FOR TO CHOOSE THE RIGHT WEB DESIGN COMPANY FOR YOU
Web Technology is Constantly Changing
If you’re Googling how to choose the right web design company that’s great. It means you’re prepared to invest a little time in making a considered and informed decision about which web design company is right for you. We’re of course advocates of hiring a web design company in Australia, and we also recommend you look for web designers that showcase their experience and knowledge regarding the constant changes in website technology including:
- Security threats – Experienced web designers should know how to protect your website against security threats and alerts. If you opt for an inexperienced designer, you risk website vulnerability including data breaches, spam, malware, viruses, and hacking attempts. Who’s responsible for fixing your website if it’s compromised?
- Software updates – Website Content Management Systems (CMS) routinely issue software updates, but it’s up to web design companies (or website owners) to install these updates. Failure to do so can affect website performance, including page upload speed and site reliability; driving frustrated potential customers away from your site. An experienced, full-service web design company should offer Fully Managed Website Hosting to cover you here.
- Website features + functionality – Need an online shop? A booking calendar? A membership platform? Each of these extra, add-on features require specific technical knowledge. An inexperienced web design company is unlikely aware of the many amazing features available let alone what software will suit your requirements and how to configure it. This could mean your website misses out on convenient, time-saving functionality, limiting your ability to grow your business through your website.
Combining Web Design + SEO – An Art Form Worth Investing In
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) sounds simple: you want your website to come up in as many Google searches as possible and to rank at the top of each page when it does. Theoretically, it all sounds pretty straightforward, but SEO is truly an art form!
It can take a web design company in Australia years of experience to finely hone their approach to SEO. Local knowledge, continually tweaking their methods to suit Google and other search engines as they frequently update their search algorithms. To give you an idea of the challenge of doing SEO well; here are some of the factors that need to be taken into account.
- Ensuring your website structure is ‘mobile responsive’ so that it can be indexed quickly for mobile phone searches. Basically this means your site needs to be set up in such a way that search engine crawlers can access it easily.
- Creating ‘Google-friendly’ featured snippets. What is a featured snippet? It’s that singular answer box that shows up on search results pages, above the list of organic search results. If you rank number one on a search engine results page but don’t ‘own’ the featured snippet, you’ll get 30% less traffic than if you also ‘own’ the snippet.
- Building a logical site structure supported by appropriate internal linking. It’s more complicated than this, but as a starting point, key website pages need to be linked to internally, numerous times, to help Google understand that these pages are important.
Now You’re all Set to Choose the Right Web Design Company
By making you aware of the risks of choosing an inexperienced web design company, we’re hope it helps reduce your risks of being burnt, and having a lovely experience within whomever to go with.
To finish, here are some BONUS QUESTIONS worth asking, to help your make the right decision:
- Accessibility | “Is there a single person I can always contact who is responsible for my site?”
You need to be able to contact someone directly who understands your business and your website. We suggest that hiring a local web designer can help mitigate many of the risks associated with getting a website built.
- Responsiveness | “What is your approach to customer support?”If your site crashes or has issues you need to know you’re going to get the support you need ASAP and that their contact methods are easy.
Then, ask yourself: how are you treated by the web design company? Do they express an interest in understanding your business before preparing a quote? Do they welcome your questions and information?
Finding the right web design company for you is important as your website is a vital business tool for growing and evolving your business. We recommend that you do your research, and ask lots of questions.
Good Luck on your Website Journey
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