4 Things to ask your web developer
It's easy to start a web design business. Some PhotoShop skills, a few convincing marketing buzzwords, some trendy business cards...and someone calls themselves a web design company. We've seen it too many times over the years.
How do you know if your new “partner” is using you as the first client to put on their roster, or is a seasoned vet? If you're looking for an experienced and reputable web design firm, we strongly suggest asking these 4 questions before signing a contract. If you don't, there's a good chance Back40 Design will end up rescuing you, your project and your domain name. We've done it many times.
1. How many websites have you designed and launched?
Why ask? It takes more than a few successful site launches to call yourself a web developer. And designing a site is not the same as designing and launching a site for a happy customer. We're thinking the magic number should be 100. That's when a developer or design firm has seen enough and tried enough to truly understand the challenges:
- Accurate project scope
- Accurate timeline
- Effective communication
- Detail management
- And the list goes on...
2. Is your company financially healthy?
Why ask? Because you don't want the company you are working with to close shop and shut their doors. And you don’t want to lose your trusted project manager with all your project details kept in their head. We've seen it happen time and time again. Wouldn't it be best to work with a company who'll be here in the long run? Back40 Design is a debt-free, lawsuit-free company and we’ve been in business since 2000. We're designer-owned and profitable. That's our financial health.
3. Can I visit your office?
Why ask? An office visit gives you a sense of the people and the professionalism of the firm you're going to be working with. Hopefully long-term. If they won't let you visit their office or want to meet at a coffee shop, that's a red flag. It doesn’t give you a sense of who you’ll be working with, and whether they’re employed at the company at all. We invite all our clients to visit our office. Contact us for a design meeting or a consultation.
4. Is your company successful?
Why ask? If they can't grow their own company how can they grow yours? We're not talking about size or number of on-site, full-time employees (although that can be a good indicator - we currently have a staff of 17: developers, programmers, content writers, designers, UX planners, and project managers). We're talking about a track record in the web design industry. Ask their clients, their vendors and other designer professionals.