These days, any business that wants to survive needs to have a high-quality website. But, a whopping 60 percent of small businesses don’t have any kind of online presence!
Many business owners don’t know how to go about setting up a website, or they think that it’s just too expensive.
If you are part of this group, one of the best things you can do is hire a web designer to help you through the process.
There are tons of talented people out there — especially if you’re looking into hiring a web designer in Santa Cruz or another major city. But, it’s important to do your research to make sure you’re bringing the right person onto your team.
Here are some guidelines to follow when hiring a web designer to make sure you find the perfect person for the job.
Benefits of Hiring a Web Designer
When you hire a web designer, you save yourself the trouble of having to learn design principles and the ins and outs of putting together a functional website. For many people, this is reason enough to spend the extra money on a designer.
If you need more reasons, though, consider these additional benefits that come with hiring a web designer:
- Help with your online strategy to improve search engine rankings
- A competitive advantage that puts you ahead of other small businesses
- Reliable design and access to customer support
- A faster website that will help you retain customers and increase sales
- Save time and money
The last benefit is probably one of the greatest. As a business owner, when you outsource tasks that you’re not familiar with, you have more time to do the things you actually enjoy and are good at. This, in turn, will help boost your bottom line.
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Nine Things to Look for in a Web Designer
As you can see, a web designer can be an invaluable member of just about any business. But, how do you make sure you’re hiring a reliable person? These nine tips will help you find the perfect designer for the job.
1. Find Someone Who Listens to Your Ideas
Even if you’re not a web design expert, you still have a right to have an opinion on how you want your website to look.
When you’re meeting with designers, look for someone who takes your ideas into account and listens to your concerns. If they’re not interested in hearing what you think, chances are you’re going to end up with a bland, run-of-the-mill website.
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2. But Make Sure They Contribute Their Own Ideas
At the same time, since you’re not an expert, it’s important to make sure your potential designer also provides input of their own.
Make sure they’re willing to work with you to come up with the perfect design that helps you accomplish your goals. If they seem afraid to speak up or share their opinion, they might not be a good fit for you.
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3. Look for an Agency with a Comprehensive Team
It can be helpful to work with a web designer who is part of a larger agency. That way, if you need assistance with other aspects of your site, there is someone on their team who can work with your designer to fix the problem.
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4. Make Sure They Have a Live Portfolio
Don’t hire a designer unless you’ve seen samples of their past work. Pay special attention to what they’ve done most recently. If all their work is from a few years ago and they don’t seem to have anything more current to show you, be wary.
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5. Look for an Agency with Staying Power
These days, there are always new businesses popping up. While this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, it can be helpful to work with an established agency that’s been around for a while.
Many businesses close after just a couple years — if this happens, who’s going to handle your web designer?
If you’re looking to establish a long-term relationship, try to find a designer who works for an agency that doesn’t seem to be going anywhere anytime soon.
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6. Make Sure They Use a CMS
A content management system (CMS) will allow you to update content on your website without needing to have programming knowledge. A good designer will use a CMS so that you don’t have to rely on them for every little change you want to make.
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7. Make Sure They Prioritize Responsiveness
Mobile responsiveness ought to be one of your web designer’s top priorities. These days, just about everyone is searching for websites from their mobile device at least part of the time. If they haven’t caught on to this fact, they’re not the designer for you.
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8. Make Sure They Offer Maintenance Services
Remember, websites are not one-time expenses. They need to be updated regularly. You can handle some of these updates yourself, especially if your designer uses a CMS.
But, you will still need some changes that only a professional can handle. This is one of the reasons why working with a design agency is such a good idea. They often have maintenance services built into their design packages.
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9. Find Out if They Offer Revisions
Finally, make sure your designer is willing to revise your site if you’re not happy with it. Before you sign any contracts, find out how many revisions they offer and what they cost.
Start Working with a Great Web Designer Today
Now that you know what to look for when hiring a web designer in Santa Cruz, it’s time to start your search.
If you want a high-quality, unique website that matches your brand, work with us at Goodman Creatives.
Our designers have decades of experience creating the kind of website that will get your business noticed by the right customers. Check out our portfolio to see samples of work today.