If you’ve ever built a website, you know how similar it is to giving birth. Not only is the design and “construction” process time-consuming (and expensive if you hire someone), but the website itself is critical to the future of your business. It’s both a practical and symbolic work of art. It is, in many ways, an extension of you and your business—a synthesis of who you are, what you do, and how you do it.
It’s a complex process to design and build something whose purpose is to fully and accurately represent you and your business—with all of the aesthetic, functional, and logistical requirements. Choosing a Milwaukee web design company to work with during this process is therefore critical.
If you’re ready for a new website and want to avoid becoming the next horror story, we’ve compiled a list of seven factors to consider when selecting a website design and development partner.
Here are the following tips for choosing a Web Designer for Custom Websites.
1. Do their skills meet the requirements of your project?
While this may not be necessary for all website projects, consider how complex the website you want is. If you want a website with Customer Relationship Management CRM integrations, search engine optimization, e-commerce, and so on, you should look into your potential web designer’s experience and credentials.
Questions to consider:
- What qualifications make you the best candidate to build my website?
- Do you have a team of graphic designers and web developers on staff? Or are they freelancers?
- What is your approach to project management?
- Is it possible for me to join your project management system?
2. Do they have a good portfolio of web design?
A professional Milwaukee web designer firm’s portfolio should be easily accessible, such as on their website.
- Do you like their design work at first glance?
- Is everything the same?
- Is it all for the same industry?
It’s great if all of their websites are visually appealing, but if they all look the same or are all for, say, clothing retailers, and you’re an accountant, the aesthetic and functionality may not be a good fit. Aside from the overall look and feel of the site, usability, accessibility, and how users will convert are all critical.
Is their website’s user flow clean and simple? Is there a call to action on each page? Is essential information hidden or easily accessible? Finally, ensure you can see these websites in action by requesting URLs of websites they have worked on and experimenting with them.
Questions to consider:
Can you provide the URLs of websites you’ve created?
- For which industries have you created websites?
- How does your design process work? What is your user testing procedure?
- Do you employ responsive design on your websites?
- How do you ensure that your websites are accessible to everyone?
- What will the next 1-2 years bring regarding website design trends?
Cost is an essential factor to consider in a Milwaukee web design company, as it is in any purchase—as a business owner, you must be aware of what is and is not within your budget.
That being said, your website is arguably one of the most important pieces (if not the single most important piece) of your business you’re its storefront. Where many potential customers or clients first find you, then learn more about you, and hopefully purchase from you. So it’s critical to invest in a quality website that attracts your target audience, tells your brand story, and converts visitors into paying clients.
Softcircles is one of Milwaukee’s fastest-growing web design firms. Through their strategic and meticulous website design services, they focus on creating professional and customized user experiences where imagination meets creativity and technology. They employ certified developers, digital marketers, and innovators with extensive domain knowledge, technology, and design skills.
4. Do your characteristics complement each other?
One factor you may overlook is whether or not you LIKE the web designer. Keep in mind that depending on the size and complexity of the project, you may be working with this person for 3-5 months. They will become your new best friend.
Questions to consider:
- How did you get into this field?
- What do you like best about creating websites?
- What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
5. Work scope
In addition to the cost and quality of work, it is critical to examine the full scope of work included with different designers.
What does the designer’s quoted fee include? Some designers include logo and favicon design in their projects, while others will require you to hire a graphic designer for that. Some designers will provide a customized cheat sheet or screen share tutorial to walk you through the backend of your site and the updates you’ll need to make moving forward, whereas others will pass over your finished website.
6. Does the Location of Your Web Designer Matter?
Does the location of your Milwaukee web designer matter in today’s world? No, we say. We can now build websites for organizations worldwide thanks to the incredible technologies that are currently available.
However, not all are created equal. You must ensure that the selected provider has the systems and capabilities to manage a streamlined project. In our experience, having a solid understanding of project management and the ability to use a project management system effectively allows us to work with any organization and work well online.
Your partner should also be skilled at holding online brainstorming sessions, following a tried-and-true process to bring your site architecture to life, and asking probing questions.
Questions to consider:
- What city are you in?
- If you live nearby, do you schedule in-person or virtual meetings?
- How will you communicate with us about the project if you are not local?
Finally, consumer reviews have a lot of clouts. There isn’t a centralized review platform for Milwaukee web designers that includes all positive and negative reviews (unless you use a freelancer platform like Upwork). So, remember that designers can choose and feature only positive experiences in their testimonials.
However, it can still be beneficial to identify areas where positive experiences exist. Clients had to be willing to share their testimonials, and the designer had to have a good enough relationship with them to ask. It’s also helpful if the designer links to a client’s live website… this confirms that they’re a natural person who worked on an actual project with a said designer.
You can search for web designers who work on the specific website platform you want to use (if you have a preference). And the industry you’re in (some web designers are industry-specific, which is great because it allows them to get to know it even better!).
Another option is to find a freelancer through a platform like Upwork. You can search for freelancers and post a project for which available freelancers can apply. You could also look for web designers in your area, but this is only recommended if your website will be geographically specific.