Having a new website designed for your business, and mulling over which Cardiff web designers to hire, well, it’s not the same sort of purchase decision that’s you would make when popping out on a lunch break from work, and making a quick decision of what tasty snack you would like to devour that day.
No, it’s much more important than that, it needs a lot of deliberation, consideration and also you have to make sure it is getting good value for money.
It’s a little bit like purchasing a new car in that sense, there’s a lot of things that you need to weigh up, because the last thing you want is to take your new car out for a spin, and then to find that disappoints- its lacking the grunt from the engine you dreamed of.
So the engine may well be lacking the power that you wanted, the air-conditioning isn’t up to much and the seats are so uncomfortable that after long journey you might find yourself crawling out of the car, rather than walking away from it.
So, that’s why purchasing a new website for your business, well is a little bit like buying a new car, there are a lot of things that you need to work out, and consider before you get on the dog and bone, and say to one of the many web designers dotted all over Cardiff, “we want you”.
You need to consider performance, style and you need all the functionality to all work correctly so that they do their job properly.
So it is something you need to mull over, consider and is basically have a good think about which web design company you’re going to choose- so, I think we’ve covered this point enough, but it was worth droning on there for a second, because so many business owners go with a cheap deal, only to find they have to restart the web design process once again, because they need a better website.
Now which web designer should you hire? (we are a bit biased on this one, we have to say)
We have worked on many top quality websites over the years, for solicitors, dentists through to construction companies based right here in Wales, so we are well placed to help you guide through the web design process step by step step.
And this guide will help you, by guiding you on what things you need to think about, before you ring a web design agency.
So, without further ado let’s help you along your journey of designing a new website for your business.
And let’s get down to brass tacks, how much money do you have to spend?
Now this may sound rather blunt question, we hope it didn’t offend you?
Yet you do need to think about how much you want to spend on your new website.
You don’t want a website so cheap, so basic it doesn’t do its job.
Yet, you don’t want to push the boat out, hire the most expensive, flash web designers you can hire, only to find that you run out of money and are left with a good, but unfinished website.
So, whether you’re a sole trader or a business which employs in excess of 1000 staff, and is listed on the FTSE 100 stock market, what you need to do is to weigh up how you can get the best value for money from your web design company.
Now you might be thinking, well just opt for the cheapest quote, surely?
That takes us back to our example of purchasing a car, if you quickly find that it can’t keep up with motorway traffic that easily, it’s engine sounds strained when you driving it, well can be a bit annoying to drive, you might want to replace it quite quickly with something with more power.
This is exactly the same when it comes to purchasing a website, if it’s really cheap, and it is built using a “content management system” CMS that’s super difficult to edit, you might quickly find the limitations of that website. In a nutshell, you will have wished you spend a bit more money and got something that’s better quality.
That’s because, with rather basic websites, that are built cheaply, you might get a call from your seo agency at a later date, when they get brought on board, and they may say, we can’t work with this web design, simply because it’s full of glitches, or the dashboard is just too difficult to use. It might be so basic that is nothing more than a glorified online business card.
So, what you need is to work out your budget, how much do you want to spend? and how you can go about getting the best value for money. Don’t just pick a business from face value, weigh up the following:
– Have the web designers built websites for other businesses in my business sector- and are they well designed?
– What cms is best for my business?
– Does the web design agency also offer seo, or will I have to hire a separate business?
– Can I talk to current or past clients, of the web designers, to see if the web design process went smoothly?
– Can the website be easily edited as the business expands, and changes to the web design are needed?
– Is everything included in the quote, or will I keep see mounting extras being added to the invoice? Such as is the website going to be responsive?
– How much is ongoing maintanance, for example if theres a problem with the website, who has the back-ups?
– Will you offer me a popular cms? So I can easily find web developers who can work on the website?
Don’t get sucked in buy cheap deals, your website may be the main way you get new customers, so don’t scrimp and save
It is most definitely not about, just as we stated earlier, picking the cheapest quote, you need to buy quality.
So how do you define quality when it comes to web design,?
Well, the first thing is decide on which content management system is best for your business.
Think of the content management system, a bit like the engine within a car, you don’t see it, but it is what powers the vehicle.
So, the point we are trying to make is this, just like a cheap engine often incurs problems over its lifetime before it ends up in the scrap yard, it will often lack performance and offers a rather dull and not very exciting drive, the same can be said about a cheap website.
The performance is likely to be lacking, and your seo consultant may turn around and say, the website is, well a bit rubbish, it can’t be optimised that easily because every page is “content thin”, the website might be very slow, and I just offer the customer a bad UX, which stands for “user experience” .
Is the cheap website flawed from the beginning?
It might even be flawed, and by that we mean that the web designers may have even used duplicated text across the site, which means that the seo will be damaged before you even got out of the starting blocks.
Duplicated text for those that don’t know, damages a businesses organic seo, so much so, the business could incur a Google Panda penalty, so what this means is when Google indexes the website, it will see all of the text has been taken from another website, and penalise the website, so this often means, the seo will be severally damaged to the point, it doesn’t appear anywhere on Google.
So, you need to weigh up which content management system is best for you.
Its not a one size fits all process, instead you going to need to sit down with you web designers, get a nice hot beverage in front of you, and discuss what option is best for your business.
It might be that you have high ambitions for your business, so you need a content management system that can be changed and adapted easily as your business grows.
You might be a small business, and you just simply want an easy-to-use dashboard so you after a long day of working in your shop, can log in, to say wordpress, and make price changes, for that you will need an easy to use dashboard, and we would recommend wordpress as the content management system.
You might run a business in Cardiff with the stock is regularly changing, so you need a content management system that perfect for e-commerce businesses, so can just log in to make changes to the prices.
You might want a content management system that updates itself, so you web designers might recommend a different content management system.
So first things first, which content management system you going to use?
And again, think of the CMS, like you would the engine under the bonnet of a car, you don’t see it, but it is what powers the website, you want something this ultra reliable, that can be updated super easily, and that has a dashboard that you find easy-to-use.
Why we are huge fans of WordPress
The vast majority of websites that our web designers design are built using a cms called “WordPress”.
Now if you’ve never had a website designed, then you might not have the foggiest what WordPress even this.
That letters refer you back to when we were talking about content management systems, and we compare these two and engine in a car.
Well WordPress is a type of content management system, and it’s a really popular one used by so many businesses, in matter facts we have seen certain statistics that say over 33% of all websites on the internet today are built using WordPress.
So, WordPress is very popular, and the reason why its is so popular we are going to explain now.
Super simple and easy-to-use dashboard
When you look at computer code, unless your web developer, it will be a bit like staring into the matrix, it’s unlikely to make any sense to somebody who hasn’t got any knowledge of HTML.
So it’s the same as looking at the dashboard on your car, you want it to be easy-to-use, so if you want to change something like the suspension setup, to make the journey more comfortable on a bumpy road, well you just want to press a button.
Obviously you can’t change the suspension setup of a WordPress website, but what you can do, is log into the dashboard, which is super simple to do, and start changing the wording, add a meta description, or change the NAP information for example- and with a wordpress website, well, this is a piece of cake to do.
Why does this even matter?
Well, it matters a lot, because if you were to have a website built by some web designers, they might hold onto the login details for the website and not release them the client. For example the web design agency, may have built their own cms, which only they can edit, they don’t offer a dashboard, or admin panel that the customer can log into, no, they may have built a cms, that only they can edit.
This means when something as simple as the phone number needs changing on the website, well, you have to go through the web designers to make the changes, and yes, you guessed it, then an invoice will normally swiftly follow.
Do you want a website built, where your invoiced every time you request the simplest of changes?
Now you obviously don’t want to be invoiced all the time by your web designers, that’s for them completing run of the mill tasks, such as adding blog posts, changing phone numbers or say adding a new picture of a staff member that you just hired.
You might want to do some of this work yourself, and that’s understandable, is sometimes quicker, its easier and also it may help you to save money.
So, this is why we often recommend WordPress, because it has an easy dashboard, which means you can make certain changes yourself, and you don’t need to be a website developer.
For example, let’s say that you want to take a staff member off your website’s, because they have left and gone elsewhere, well, with a WordPress website, this is a piece of cake.
Or alternatively your company might change address in Cardiff, you’ve moved into bigger offices, so you need to change your address and swiftly, so your customers know where to meet you, again this is a piece of cake if you own a WordPress website.
Alternatively, you may want to rewrite the meta description, and there are many free plugins, such as SEO Yoast, and can help you do this if you own a WordPress website, so you can change the wording in a short amount of time of a meta title, and meta description, and yes again, you guessed it you don’t need any coding knowledge to do simple changes like this, if you have a wordpress website.
How much does a WordPress website cost?
We don’t want to sound a bit blunt, but is a bit like asking “how long is a piece of string”, that’s because it does depend on what the customer wants.
Our web design company doesn’t like to work our quotes based just on how many pages the business needs neither, as we don’t think this is a good way of working out a cost.
You might see some Cardiff website designers, state a fix price for say a 10 page website, but we don’t like to base our quotes on how many pages need to be designed. The reason for this is, some clients want a relatively simple website, where others may require a lot more work, so basing a quote just on pages, is vague, so we instead like to get a good idea of what the customer wants, and then, offer a quote, rather than putting a list of fixed prices on our website.
Can you work with your website designers over the long run?
When picking your web designers, consider whether you can work with them over the long term?
With some businesses, especially start-up companies they might consider getting a website a built as a one-off process, and by that we mean, they think, that they are never going to need the web designers ever again, once the websites been built.
Yet, hold on to your horses right therefore a second, often the business will regularly need help from their web designers, for example as the business expands, often there will be many website design changes which are needed.
If you run an e-commerce website for example, often you need the web designers to help you to make certain edits to the website, such as add a new range of products, so if you sell running trainers, you might start selling fitness trackers, and you may need the Cardiff web designers to do split testing and help reduce the bounce rate on your website for example.
So this leads nicely onto our next point, which is pick a web design agency the you want to work with for a long period of time.
Therefore, we would recommend meeting up with the web designers, and have a chat with them and see if you can work with them over the long run?
Pick a company that offers all the marketing services you need under one roof
A lot of companies will often need a digital marketing agency which has multiple different staff that can help you with everything from designing the website, say a new WordPress website, or to help you improve your companies seo (search engine optimisation, and you may need the help of a copywriter, to help write all of the content marketing for you? Then you might need help of graphic designers to build graphics for you, and the company logo, design business cards, and perhaps graphics for your company cars, or lets say to help design an app for your company.
So what we are trying to say is, often, its easier if you pick a digital marketing agency, that can offer this all under one roof.
Hiring separate marketing companies, well, often means a lot of emails need to be written
What can get very confusing for some business owners is if you have to e-mail all the marketing companies separately, so say your trying to manage the web designers, the seo agency and someone whos designing your company logo for you for example.
What’s much easier is if all of these services are offered by just one company in Cardiff, because then you got one digital marketing agency managing everything for you.
So, when you hire a digital marketing agency to manage everything, then once your website has been designed, it can then be added over to the seo staff to start beginning optimising the website for you.
Then if you need a logo designed as well, then this should be also many graphic designers within the company that can do this for you.
So this is something worth bearing in mind when you are picking a web designer, that is, do they offer other marketing services you may need, such as help improving your companies search engine optimisation?
Are the web designers local
So, you could have video catch up meetings with your web designers, yet what you might prefer to is pick a local company instead, you can actually meet the web design team. You might for example like brainstorming with them, and drawing things on a white board?
You might find that this helps you with the creative process, where you can put forward your ideas and they can suggest ideas for your brand new website.
Now of course meetings can all be done online, but often you might want to go and meet with your web designers in person, and if you hire them to help improve your seo (search engine optimisation), then obviously this is often a long-term process, for example you might work with an seo agency for say the next 10 years,
So what you might want do is get a really good working relationship with the digital marketing agency, so you might start a friendship with the management or directors where you go out and enjoy a pint with each other, and for that to happen, that business often needs to be local, because you don’t want to be travelling up to say London, if your business is based in Cardiff every time you want a meeting with your web designers.