So you are in the market for a web designer to develop a website for your business or redesign your current site. Let's face it, you wont be short of options as there are a lot of companies and indivudals to choose from. With online marketing growing more and more each year, your website is going to be one of the most important tools you have to promote your business and increase sales.
As a business asset, your website is going to need to achieve your business goals, so not only do you need to be aware of the process but also ask questions to your designer about responsiveness, their previous work, the cost involved including revisions, the scope of the website development and so on. It is also important that you ask your developer about other issues like hosting, administrator access and control of your website, especially if you choose to go on a plan.
We have lost count how many times we have had issues with new clients who have had bad experiences with previous designers because of their lack of knowledge around the following areas:
1. HOSTING IS NOT FREE. YOU HAVE A WEBSITE DEVELOPED BUT YOU HAVE TO SIT IT SOMEWHERE SO PEOPLE CAN SEE YOU ON THE INTERNET!
Ask your developer if you are not sure about what the best hosting options are. Most CMS websites will sit on a cpanel or in the cloud these days. I personally prefer a cpanel because it gives complete control. If they set up the hosting for you, then make sure you have all the login details! If you are on a plan where hosting is included but you are coming to the end of the plan and want to take over the site yourself, make sure you ask how the website can be moved to a new hosting account and what options are available for you. It is good to know these things before you make any decisions on the best options for you and your business when it comes to web development.
2. YOUR DOMAIN NAME INFORMATION IS IMPORTANT.
Make sure you have all the login details and certificates for your website domain. In fact, it is not hard to set this up yourself online when purchasing it.
Your website will be connected to your domain name. You cannot have one without the other to sit online. If you do choose a website plan and the company is setting up the domain name for your website, make sure they are setting it up in your name with your business ABN and not theirs. Otherwise, they are the ones who will own your domain name and you do not want this, as this domain is what all your online marketing will revolve around when directing people to your business!
3. ADMINISTRATOR ACCESS OF YOUR WEBSITE.
Know your login details, even if you are sitting on a plan. Any website will have an administrator area where changes can be made. Make sure you keep a copy of these login details. It is also important that you back up your website regularly in case you ever get hacked.
In addition to this, you need to know exactly what you want your website to do. Your website will be more or less expensive based on what your goals and what your business is offering. If you are selling services through a simple website, it might cost you less than if you are selling products, which requires a shopping cart. Don't be shy, be specific and voice everything you need so you are fully aware of what the costs will be to develop the website and ensure an open relationship between you and your developer!
Keep in mind that building a website is only the beginning; your website will be completely useless without a proper search engine optimization strategy (SEO). SEO will get your website good rankings on search engines and bring you natural traffic - which is what you aim for. No matter how good a website looks, it will never get traffic if sitting in page 3 of Google.
Need a new website? Our team of web designers is more than happy to answer any questions you may have. Get in touch today.