When beginning your Small Business, there are a lot of things to consider. Among these, is building a great Website that perfectly reflects your Business and your products or services. In today’s Digitally-centric World, your Website can either make or break your new Business’s success, so getting it right is of the utmost importance.
Many Small Business Owners make the common mistake of turning to Template-based Websites, such as Wix, due to their affordability, or else ask a neighbor’s son who dabbles in development to do the work for them. While in the short term this may indeed seem like the cost-effective choice, chances are you’ll be left with a mediocre Website that will cost you customers and sales. So, in reality, what might seem like a good idea at the time, could seriously stand to harm your new Business in the long-term.
Your Website and Online Presence are an essential part of your Business. If done right, it will drive sales, increase brand awareness and grow you a group of repeat loyal customers which will ultimately help you achieve your Business goals. To achieve an optimum Online Presence, you really need to employ a good Web Developer that knows how to build your brand and convert Website visitors into customers.
But just how do you find the perfect Website Developer for you and your Business? Well, you’ve come to the right place! To help you sort the weed from the chaff, we’ve listed some key considerations you need to think about when choosing someone to entrust your Website build to.
Do They Have the right Attitude?
Before you get into the technical side of things, you need to make sure that your values, personality and attitudes align with those of the Website Developers. If you find yourself conflicting or clashing with them in your initial conversations, this is an immediate warning sign of the relationship to come.
Ask the developer a series of questions about how they operate, how they deal with potential hurdles and assess their ability to communicate effectively with you. If something in their response doesn’t seem quite right, then they’re probably not the person for you. However, if they are open, enthusiastic and willing to offer you all the guidance and information you need, then they’re more likely to be the best fit for your Business.
Of course, it's easy for someone to sound great in an initial conversation. For this reason, to make sure they’re really up to scratch, take a look at what some other of their clients have to say about their work. Read through Google reviews and client testimonials to better gauge how the developer is to work with.
Content Management Systems is a MUST
Aside from having the right attitude, you should find a Developer who will provide you with an effective and easy-to-use Content Management System (CMS), such as WordPress.
Having a user-friendly CMS will make it possible for you to update your own Website, change features and add any content once your Website has been created. Having CMS means that you don’t need to go back to your Developer when you need quick little changes made to your Website, which will save you an incredible amount of time, money and stress. Once your Website has been set-up, a good Developer should offer you specific CMS training, to allow you to navigate your way through your Site’s backend with ease. With their guidance, you should feel completely capable when it comes to making any changes on your Site.
Plan on What You Want for Your Website
Once you talk to a potential Web Developer, the first thing they’ll likely ask you is what you might be wanting for your Website. This could include anything from whether you want an integrated store feature, a gallery or a blog integrated onto the Site.
For this reason, it’s best to have the answers to these kind of questions, so you can better gauge how receptive the Developer is to your responses. Are they willing to go the extra mile for something you may be wanting? Do they seem hesitant to take on a Website that will be complex, or conversely, be simple and therefore low budget? If this is the case, then you may need to look elsewhere for your Developer.
Your Website Developer should be open to your suggestions, while also having your Small Business’s interests at heart. If they try to sell you into something you don’t need, or try to persuade you out of something you do, then this should be a red flag. You want someone who is open, honest and completely forthcoming when it comes to discussing what’s best for your Business’s Online Presence.
Will They Make My Website Mobile-Friendly?
The number of people searching for Businesses on mobile devices has skyrocketed in recent years, however there are still some Web Developers who don’t optimise Websites for mobile viewing. This should be an immediate turn off when choosing the best Developer for you.
Before you employ a Developer, it’s absolutely vital to ensure that they can effectively optimise your Site for Mobile and Tablet usage. You can test their mobile optimisation skill level by accessing some of their clients’ Websites via your own Mobile device. If the Website is hard to navigate on your smartphone, then it means the may be limited in this particular area of development and you should be wary of proceeding with them.
Remember, mobile capability is a HUGELY important component of your Site and shouldn’t be an afterthought. If a potential customer lands on your Site while searching on their smartphone and they can’t navigate or view it properly, they’ll leave immediately. And that’s a sale lost for your Business.
What Are My Payment Options?
When looking for the perfect Web Developer for you, the cost is always going to be an important consideration, particularly if you’re just establishing your Business. While getting a Website professionally developed is an investment,don’t be fooled into thinking you have to pay an arm and a leg for a good job.
There are many unscrupulous Web Development Companies out there who will convince you that you need to spend a small fortune to build your Website, but this isn’t the case. Here at Sites n Stores we offer numerous price points that meet our clients budgets, ensuring they get all the Website features they need at an affordable price for them.
It might also be helpful for you to ask the potential Developer if they offer a month-by-month payment system, as this may help if you’re not yet receiving a steady cash flow from your new Business. But whether you choose an outright or monthly payment, you need to feel assured by the Developer that you’re getting a good deal and not being unnecessarily ripped off.
Ask for an exact cost breakdown of what you’re being charged for, what’s included and if there are any ongoing maintenance fees you need to know about. If they are completely honest and transparent in financial matters, then that’s a great sign!
When choosing the best Web Developer for you, it’s of the utmost importance that you choose someone that you feel you can build and maintain good rapport with. You need to trust them and feel as though there is a mutual level of respect, and a good flow of communication.
By taking the above questions and considerations into account, you’ll be better able to assess the skills, competency and humility of the potential Web Developer. Remember, these days, your Website can make or break your Small Business’s success Online, so don’t rush the process of selecting your Developer. Do your research, asses the options and then make an informed and reasoned decision based on the results.