We have been there too.
You are relying on a company or contractor for a pressing deadline and you are given all the assurances that everything is under control.
Then you find out “IT” isn’t ready yet or you get it and “IT” doesn’t work.
“IT” can be a website, a software solution, graphics, requirements…whatever.
Of course, as with most problems, risk can be averted by good communication. But how can you discuss these things if you yourself are not technical?
Here are some questions that we have compiled that should be answered with confidence before you proceed with hiring a web development company.
- Do you have examples of your work. You do NOT want to be their first project, as much as you want to receive a surgeon’s very first slice. Let them cut their teeth on non-profit volunteer work for that.
- What is your process? Time is wasted if they don’t have a procedure to follow to get requirements from you, document shared understanding, show you a prototype, etc.
- Tell me why table-design layout is bad. If they hesitate, or argue with this, move on. They do not know about SEO, modern standards of design, or accessibility.
- What is a box-model? Not knowing CSS well enough to answer this means your project can take longer than necessary.
- How will I update my website? If they tell you they will be available at an hourly rate, think twice and ask yourself, how often do I need fresh information. If often, they should be recommending a CMS and have demonstrated example projects.
- How will I know how well the site is doing? You are looking for their knowledge of metrics. Things to consider, search result ranking, how many are visiting your site, how long are they staying, and are they converting? (signing up for newsletter, purchasing products, etc.)