How to Choose a Web Design Agency for Your Business

In today’s digital world, having a well-designed and functional website is essential for any business. But with so many web design agencies out there, how do you choose the right one for your needs? Thankfully, the process can be made a lot simpler if you know what to look out for. Here are a few things to keep in mind when choosing a web design agency:

members of a web design agency meeting to discuss a project

Define your needs

Knowing what you need, or want, your website to do is the first and most important step in finding a web design agency. Do you need a simple website with basic information about your business, or do you need a more complex website with e-commerce functionality? Maybe you need even more custom features that require development beyond the scope of a “standard” website. Once you know what you need, you can start narrowing down your options.

For example, we recently had a lead that required extensive custom development and fancy features. Thankfully we were capable of building out such a site, but not all agencies are equal, and some are more focused on just design rather than design & development.

Do your research.

Read online reviews, check out agency portfolios, and talk to other business owners who have used web design agencies. This will give you a good idea of the agency’s capabilities and reputation. This falls heavily under the “vet your designer” point from our previous article, but it’s so important that we’d be remiss not to mention it here as well.

It’s totally fine if you want to use a web design agency who’s newer to the industry. In fact, we encourage it as it helps smaller agencies grow. If that’s the route you want to go though, do your due diligence to make sure that the designer you’re going to be working with can be trusted. You won’t regret making sure your designer is trustworthy and good at their job before you accept their proposal.

man wearing white top using MacBook

Meet with potential agencies

Once you’ve narrowed down your options, schedule meetings with a few potential agencies. This will give you a chance to ask questions and get a feel for their approach to web design. One thing to keep in mind that isn’t always mentioned is to make sure your personalities match. You might find a great designer or developer for your project, but if you’re unable to communicate with them without wanting to pull your hair out, maybe it’s not the best option for you.

Ideally, you want someone who is an expert at their job AND is easy to communicate with. Don’t choose a designer just because they agree with you on everything though. A good designer will make what you want, but a great designer will tell you when you’re wrong about something. As the client, you need to be able to trust your designer, and they have to be willing to speak up when something’s not quite right.

Get everything in writing

Before you sign a contract with any web design agency, make sure you get everything in writing. This includes the scope of work, the timeline, the budget, and the payment terms. Our project proposals are extremely detailed, and always include a full statement of work with a detailed list of deliverables. This ensures any potential client of ours knows exactly what they’re getting into before they spend any money.

Our contracts also include protections for both teams. Things like who owns the intellectual property of the site, cancellation terms, and important details that govern the project are easy to overlook when you’re starting a new business and are excited about getting a new website up and running.

three people sitting in front of table laughing together

Be prepared to collaborate

A good web design agency will work with you to create a website that meets your needs and reflects your brand. Be prepared to provide feedback and be involved in the design process. A good web design agency will work with you and have near-constant communication about the status of your project. Better yet, you should be able to get an in-progress development link to check in on as your website is built.

That road goes both ways though. If you’re not prepared to communicate with your client, your project is going to be slow to finish. We’ve had a number of projects over the years that go months past the timeline because of clients not getting back to us on time. It’s important for both sides to be communicative for a design project to go smoothly!

Here are some additional tips for choosing a web design agency:

  • Make sure the agency has experience in your industry. The agency should have a good understanding of the challenges and opportunities facing businesses in your industry.
  • Ask about the agency’s process. How do they approach web design? What are their steps? How will they keep you updated on the project?
  • Get references. Ask the agency for references from previous clients. This will give you an idea of their work and their customer service.
  • Make sure the agency is responsive. When you have questions or concerns, you need to be able to get in touch with the agency quickly and easily.
  • Get a fair price. Don’t be afraid to negotiate the price of the project. But be sure to get everything in writing, as mentioned above.

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