A new website is a huge investment for your business, so it’s important to take a lot of time before choosing an agency to entrust with the work.
There are lots of questions you should be asking before you settle on somebody to work on your site, but here are three of the most important.
If you go to a web design agency or a digital marketing agency which offers web development as an extra service, there’s a chance that they may outsource the work to somebody else.
In itself, this isn’t the worst thing in the world, but you certainly want to know if it’s going to be the case because it can difficult working with a middleman.
Things can very easily get lost in translation and in reality, you’re paying for work from a company which you know nothing about.
Instead, it’s much better to find an agency which will carry out all of the work in-house and try to find out a little more about them.
If your web development is going to be outsourced, it’s worth checking out this post from Forbes.
Try to find out how big of a team the agency has and what kind of experience they all have, to get an idea of how reliable they’re going to be.
Liquid Bubbleis a full-service agency in London who said:“If a team have been working together for a number of years you can be fairly confident that they’ll be providing a reliable service and that they’ll be fully conversant with all of the technology.”
Web design agencies will all have their own preferences when it comes to a CMS (content management system) to build your site with.
There’s no right or wrong answer here, but one of the most important things to check is whether the CMS is open source.
Open source means that the CMS is created and maintained by a community of developers which is free to use (although various plugins will cost money).
Generally speaking, this is the way to go, because it’s cheaper and there’s loads of support out there.
WordPress is by far the most popular CMS, but check out this article from 1&1 for a more detailed comparison of the main options.
If an agency wants to use their own custom CMS, it means that you’re essentially trapped, because only they will know how to work with it. With an open source CMS, you’ve got an extensive network of developers out there who can help and support you with your site in the future.
At some point, you’re going to have to get into the nitty-gritty how much things are going to cost and how long they’re going to take.
Unfortunately, lots of agencies will quote a fairly low price initially, only to jack it up as the project goes on.
This is why it’s so important to ensure that both sides carry out the right amount of due diligence to come to an agreement on a price which is going to cover all of the work.
Along the same lines, try to establish a timeline for how long the work will take, with deadlines built in, so that you can keep track of how the build is progressing.