6 Ways to Identify the Right Web Development Company
The importance of a website for business success can’t be overstated. No less true is the sentiment for the impact of your choices during the development process. Uninformed decisions can add to an ever-growing list of issues, eventually leading to an exhausted budget and little to show for it.
Rocky relationships often serve the first taste of what happens when due diligence isn’t part of your approach. Only when the job is long done and paid for is it clear that the company shaping your website is also shaping how your online audience finds, perceives, remembers and interacts with your business.
This can make for a daunting and frustrating endeavour. Websites have incredible potential as tools for growth, but only when the right people are building them – and getting paid accordingly. Depending on the scope of the project, small business owners in Australia can expect to pay anywhere from $2,000 to $12,000 for a good website.
That said, there’s no need to be concerned about putting your web development budget at risk. Following are 6 ways to separate the pros from the posers and identify the best company for your needs.
Without forgetting the website itself, the page where you can browse through past projects is naturally a good starting point for building an idea of what to expect. What stands out? Are there any elements you don’t like?
A portfolio can also reveal the company’s specialisations. Knowing this, you can determine how much experience they have working specifically with other clients in your niche. The longer the list, the more likely they are to have already learned from common mistakes still made by less experienced developers.
Another factor to look out for is whether they utilise responsive design. With mobile facilitating 90% of internet users, full compatibility is an absolute essential for any modern website. Don’t forget to ensure that you’re satisfied with their approach to design. If you can’t see your website wearing the same suit, it’s worth exploring other options.
After looking at the portfolio, you’ll likely settle with an expectation that closely resembles what you saw.
But the culmination of the partnership reveals little about the partnership itself. To get the other half of the story, make use of client references. This will give you a better idea of what it’s really like to work with the company. Who knows, perhaps those beautiful websites are not worth the arguments and delays that plague their development.
Reviews can be tricky to interpret. There will inevitably be some clients whose unrealistic expectations generate feedback that isn’t entirely fair or accurate. It’s best to approach your analysis with an open mind. A swarm of high ratings might warrant disregarding the one or two negative pieces of feedback.
But if the same issues keep cropping up, it could be sufficient reason to avoid that company. If you can’t find their listing on any review site in the first place, they might be hiding something. Some platforms are better suited for finding reviews. For instance, Clutch specialises in gathering feedback on IT businesses around the world.
Take a moment to analyse the scope of the web development services on offer. What kind of effort is made to go the extra mile and provide something the others don’t? A good example can be found on Appetiser, a web development company that also offers expert guidance and insights into how you can facilitate growth.
Their range of services extends far beyond that, including the likes of e-commerce solutions, online marketplaces, blockchain technology and progressive web development for ultra-responsive designs, to name a few. The amount of value a company packs into their offer is telling of the effort they put into their work, so don’t forget to consider it.
Almost every web development company includes hosting in their services. Be sure to consider whether the host they will use for your project is fast and reliable. It can be tempting to get chintzy in this area, but you get what you pay for, which in hosting translates to uptime.
Another way to gauge the level of effort a web development company puts into their services is to simply shoot them a message. There will be an endless amount of back-and-forth communication throughout the stages of development. If one party is always late to respond, it can hinder progress with unnecessary setbacks.
Just as important is the way the company responds to your queries. Look out for those who express a clear interest in your business and a desire to learn more about your project. This is essential for the developer to gain a proper understanding of your goals and needs.
The above factors should go a long way in helping you find the right company for your project. A reliable partner is a must, as their role has no equal when it comes to helping you realise your business goals.