I have to give you this information, up front. This is because I run into trouble so often. This is what normally happens. I get a call from a person who wants me to look into their site to make a couple of changes. Sometimes things go really well because their site was built using “best practices” and they are able to access all their content. Other times, things don’t go so well. What I have compiled here, are the questions to ask a web designer that I wish those people would have known to ask their web designers before they invested thousands of dollars. My experience tells me that these are important and I will try to tell you why
What are the questions to ask a web designer?
- Do you own your own Server? Who is on this server? Why do you care? Because you will be looked on less favorably if there are certain sites sitting on a server with you. Basically, you will be judged by the company you keep. You want to know what kind of sites they create, both because Google will not rank your site as high if they don’t like the other sites and your server may be more prone to certain forms of hacking if a site you site with is suspect.
- Can I access all of my content? They will him and haw and try to tell you that you will be able to. However, more often than not, what has happened is that the designer is going to create a website that is a template. That template may only allow you to change certain style aspects. Even worse is that some templates, set up by the designer, only give you to access certain parts of your site, excluding critical portions…like your address.
- What are my ongoing costs, after my site is built, and EXACTLY what do they cover? I have seen crazy stuff. Sites where people pay up to $300 a month for a site that isn’t altered….well, ever…up until I was contacted. I have seen sites where people are paying monthly fees where their sites were not being updated regularly (this is a huge problem that may ultimately shut down your site). You want easy to access content, end of story. It is one of the more important of questions to ask a web designer.
- What sort of sites do they build? I put this last because people always want to look through a portfolio. Don’t get me wrong, that is very important…and I will tell you why but they do so at the peril of other questions they need to be thinking about that will negatively impact their site. Now, back to the portfolio. Website design is ever evolving. You want a designer that is interested on the freshest and newest look