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How to choose a web designer
21/08/2013
Author: Victoria Jones

We have recently published a blog on what to do if you’re getting ready to create a website – but today we’re going to look at the process before you come to choose a web designer. A lot of this can be transferred to choosing any sort of designer – for your logo or brochure design for example, but I will be focussing mainly on web design, as it’s often a confusing and jargon-riddled process for anyone who doesn’t know their CMS from their CSS.

The first thing you need to think about is why are you getting a website in the first place? Is it to attract customers to your business, share your passion with the world or show information to existing clients? This will massively affect what you need, from an online shop (also called e-commerce) to an easily updatable news page. Also you might want to think about how you want your site to look – although we create personalised websites from scratch it’s normally a good idea to bring along a few examples of sites you like so that we can work to your preferred style. Do you want large images (great for photographers, artists, event venues and clothes shops, where the visuals are important), or is text the key? Is your target market likely to browse on-the-go with mobiles and tablets? This might mean you need a mobile alternative or responsive site, which will resize to the screen it is being viewed on.

There are many people out there who use free website builders, but these can often give an unprofessional impression if you are using it for business. On average, most people these days spend less than a minute on a website. This is very little time to grab the attention of your audience – and first impressions count! In a world where google offers up plenty of competition, you need to stand out from the crowd – think about the last time you used the web to compare restaurants, workmen. Did you pick the company with the outdated free website, or the professional, modern looking homepage?

The importance of professional design can never be underestimated – but that still leaves hundreds of potential companies you can choose. With a massive range in skillsets, it’s important to start whittling the designers down by the companies they work with – if their portfolio consists of huge clients (think Nike, Warner Bros, Volkswagen) then they are probably outside of your price range unless you’re also a household name. Though a designer might have a ‘star client’ (look at our work with Tate & Lyle!) they should primarily work with businesses of a similar size to you. Also be sure to check out testimonials from these clients – were they happy with the service they received? The next thing is geographical location – do you want to have face-to-face meetings with your designer? Though web design is possible remotely, through free online tools like dropbox and skype, many people still enjoy the personal touch that a local company can offer. Next, and probably most importantly, do you get on with the team? Do they ‘get’ you and your business, and are they brimming with ideas of how to create your site and position you in the market? Here at Creating Media this is what truly sets us apart – with our branding expert Michelle on the team we are able to offer fantastic business advice alongside our fantastic design work, making sure we never lose sight of the final goal of your website. We have made connections and introductions between many of our clients, improving Monmouthshire as a truly thriving area to do business.

If you need any more hints and tips on what to looks for in a design company, or discuss your design needs, get in touch for a free consultation today on 01291 423 234, or info@creatingmedia.co.uk

Article by Victoria

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