From the Blog

How to choose your web designer.

By: Aaron Dennis

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Odd post alert… Why would Aaron Dennis, a Web Designer and Creative mogul, give pointers on how to choose your web designer, when we are indeed web designers ourselves?

Well… A web designer is like a new dress, sometimes it looks great on someone else, but you get it home, try it on and it looks awful! Web designers are a little bit like that, each one has their own style, way of interacting with clients and their own niche. Personally, I’d always be wary of someone who says to everything…

So read on and I’ll talk you through some things that you should be looking out for when finding your perfect web designer, after all, your business is your baby and you know what you’re all about.

1. What exactly are you looking for?

Okay, so this actually happens before you even begin your search for a web designer. There’s a few questions that you need to ask yourself and have answers too. There’s a couple of different types of web designers out there, some offer packages which might be okay for you and others, like us here at Aaron Dennis, offer bespoke services for our clients, quoting on your requirements to ensure that you have a proposal that meets your needs specifically, after all, in web design, one size does not fit all, a bit like that dress I spoke about earlier.

Below are the questions that you should have answers too before starting your search:

  1. How extensive is your project?
    • Are you looking for more a templated feel or perhaps something bespoke-ly built from the ground up?
  2. How many pages will your website need?
    • About us, services, contact, products? Roughly how many pages are you looking at. Not really a one size fits all, but be thinking about whether some of your pages will follow a different feel, or if dynamic content will be used (i.e. if you’re an educator, your course pages would be 1 page and the content dynamic to the course, if that makes sense…)
  3. Are there any special features on your wish list?
    • What special functions (if any) does your website need? For instance for a nail salon, do you want to have your prices up and the ability to book appointments? Knowing this will greatly help to source the perfect developer.
  4. Are you looking for someone who can help you with copywriting and SEO, or just the design components?
    • More of a, how involved do you want to be question? Are you going to write the copy for your pages, or does someone else need to take the helm to make sure that your website is perfectly optimised for your audience?
  5. What’s your budget?
    • A critical subject, talking about money, how much do you want to spend on your new website? You can spend anything from £200 right up to £50,000 on a new website and different web designers work to different price points (you’ll find our price points to be very attractive). But remember, your website is an investment in your business. If you’re looking for the next Facebook, it’s going to cost a considerable amount more than £200.
  6. What websites do you really like?
    • More of a fun one, take a look around (google your market), get a feel for how your competitors websites look like and make a list of sites and features on sites that you like, this is a great way to open up conversations with prospective web designers, being able to visually show what you like and don’t like. Also, don’t forget, using vision boards is also a great way to show what you’d like, most designers (we include us in this), love to work to visual cues, so get onto Pinterest and start pinning exactly what you want and what makes you you…

The above is crucial to making the right choice of web designer for you. Being able to hone in on exactly what you want is critical to getting any project off the ground.

As part of discovery, Aaron Dennis really drives into these details to ensure that we’re on the same page.

2. How is your initial discussion with them?

Never ever, ever, go blindly into a web design contract without having an initial meeting with them, online, face to face, whatever your poison, make sure to talk with them. You need to gauge how they are? When you ask them questions, do they interrupt with ideas? Do they try and talk your ideas down to something lesser? Do you get the feeling that you’re being oversold?

So many times we have had discussions with people who have told us that they’re designer promised the world and they saw problems but didn’t act on them. Don’t be this person. Whether you’re spending £200 or £50,000, ask every questions under the sun, get their credentials, understand them as a person. After all, they’re practically building the foundations for your house, don’t let them fall down!

3. Do they do everything you need?

There’s nothing worse than choosing a designer who doesn’t do everything that you need. This is why initial conversations are so important to have. For instance, you wouldn’t ask a drainage engineer to fit your new kitchen if they’d never done it before…

Web design is a bit like that, but having your answers to questions above will greatly improve your chances of getting the right designer for you.

4. How are their technical credentials?

It’s 2022, lets be honest, things do go wrong, but is your protective designer able to handle things when times get tough? For instance, Aaron Dennis host websites on our server infrastructure which is hosted on a cloud platform. If things go awry, we’re able to quickly investigate and adapt with constant monitoring as part of our Website Management, so our clients can always sleep easy knowing that we’re able to swiftly move to get issues resolved.

Likewise, sometimes you’ll find designers who just design and don’t host websites, this is fine, but what will you do if you’re under attack from bad people?

5. Do you get on and vibe with them?

Some so dear to us here at Aaron Dennis, there’s nothing worse than working with someone who you just don’t gel and connect with. You and your web designer will be collaboratively working on something very special to you, the front door to your business. You need to be able to sit in a coffee shop and have a chat with them and feel that you’re listened too and valued. After all, you really are the expert in your business and the web designer is showing that vision online.

If you wouldn’t have a coffee or a beer/cocktail with them, then they’re probably not for you.

6. What are their aftercare services like and what further investment is required?

Something that is fairly often forgotten, aftercare. A new website is like a new car, it still needs upkeep, the web is open and vast and bad people operate there frequently. What about updates, security, support, maintenance? What does your web designer offer? Do you have to go alone or do they have a plan available to subscribe too? After all, if your web developer built it, they’re best placed to support it.

Aaron Dennis offers Website Management, we build it and support it (and you) on it’s lifetime journey. This does need to be budgeted for, but doesn’t cost the earth. After all, we wouldn’t buy a new house and leave the door wide open to thieves?

Final Thoughts

Finding your web designer can be a long process, but if you follow our guidance above, you’ll find the perfect match for you, just like Tinder, your perfect designer is out there – you’ve just got to swipe right!

Aaron Dennis if of course the best Web Designer, but that’s our opinion, you need to make your mind up on your own if that’s the case for you. But fear not, we’re always available for a casual chat to see if we’re the right type on paper for each other. Get in touch with Aaron Dennis now for a chat about your design needs.

Aaron Dennis

Hi, I’m Aaron Dennis, founder of Aaron Dennis Creative. With over 15 years experience, my aim is to bring my knowledge and creativity to small and medium companies, understanding your goals and ideas and translating them into glorious results.