Questions to ask a web designer before signing up

Here is an article by Business Victoria that gets you asking some important questions when you’re considering a redesign or a new website. Read on to see our answers.

We understand that a website is the online “face of your business” and can be a substantial investment for smaller businesses. Signing a contract with a web developer can be a little daunting, especially if you’re not very confident with technology. We’d like you to feel confident that you can trust your site development to us. We want you to know that we’re going to take care of you and help you reach your business goals.

We’ve answered the questions for you, so you can have peace of mind that we’re the right web designer for you.

Do I own my website?

Yes! This is very important to us. We build your site, train you how to use it and hand it over to you. There are no lock in contracts for service or hosting.

Hosting and domain name registration is a part of building your site and we want you to be in control of them, however we understand that you may need a little help.

If you’re confident to bring your own domain name and web hosting, then thats great!  However if you’re not, then we have partnered with one of the largest internet hosting and domain registration companies in Australia to provide you with great service and our personal support.

At any time you can split from our account and take full control if you choose.

Which Content Management System (CMS) will you be using to build my site?

This depends on what the needs of your website and business are and the size of the site. We have a chat to you about what you want to do with the site and your level of technical comfort. We generally use Joomla or Wordpress, two great content management systems with unique properties.

However, we’re always happy to work with different technology if thats your preference.

Have you produced a website like mine before?

We can only answer this one after we have a chat to you about what you’re looking for and what your business needs.  Call us now to set up a time to talk 03 5439 5801.

We have worked with an extensive range of different businesses - check out our portfolio.

We’ve worked with retail stores, architects, manufacturers, tourism organisations, employment agencies, wineries, musicians and many others.

We have extensive experience working in the web industry and we’re sure we can create a plan that works for your business.

What are the likely ongoing costs of my website with you?

We build your website so that it’s yours! When you work with us the cost for your website is at the start, then we handover the site to you after your training is done.

Unless you decide you’d like ongoing support, training or website maintenance the only ongoing costs will be for website hosting and domain name registration.

When you use a content management system, we recommend that you keep it up to date. You have the choice of using us, or doing it yourself. It’s your choice.

Domain name registration starts at $66 for two years, and web hosting starts at $187 per year inc GST. We outline all costs in the free no obligation proposal we prepare for you.

What are your charges for service and support?

We detail all of our charges in the proposal, and we never proceed with additional work without first getting your approval for the cost.

We want you to be happy working with us so we offer you a free no obligation proposal outlining what we believe will best meet your needs. Our service doesn’t require ongoing monthly costs, but we’re happy to provide any extra service you may need.

We build our service to suit your business.  

Do you offer support outside of business hours? What are your typical response times? Can I call someone, or is it email only?

Yes we can provide out of hours, or rush services. To ensure that we provide you with the best services let us know up front the kind of service you’re looking for and we can make arrangements to suit. Our office hours are 10am - 5pm Monday to Friday, but we can make exceptions to this.

What do you offer in terms of marketing my website?

We can use a number of techniques to market your website online; organic search engine rankings, targeted ad words search engine campaigns or social media marketing. We can do one off campaigns or create an ongoing strategic campaign. We can provide all services from consulting, strategy development, campaign implementation or training. Whatever you need, we can provide - just ask.

If you’re looking for advertising or marketing across more traditional areas like tv, radio or print - we work with an extensive network of advertising and public relations agencies, graphic designers, videographers and photographers. Talk to us now for a referral.

Can I meet with the people who are doing the work?

Yes, we know that having a face to put to the name adds confidence to doing business with us. At the start of most projects you’ll meet with the consultant or developer that you’ll be working with, and they’re always available for a face to face meeting.

We like putting a face to name of the clients we work with as well!

How long do you estimate before my website goes live?

This depends on a few things. The complexity of the design, the number of pages, the content management system being used, whether the content is already available, how fast you’re able to provide feedback. If you have a deadline in mind, let us know asap and we’ll most likely be able to accommodate it.

As a guide, once we’re provided with the content and photos to be used in a site, then it is usually quite quick to get the site done - 2-3 weeks.

We do find that many sites are held up because the text for the site takes a lot longer to write than you expect.

We’re happy to quote on the copywriting for your site. Professional copywriting gets your site ready to launch and reaching your customers faster!

Will my site look good and work well on a smartphone or tablet?

At Thrive, we provide options for your website project to suit your budget. We can offer you a responsive design. We discuss this option with you, but let you choose.

What is responsive design?

It's a website design that changes slightly depending on the size of the screen you’re viewing it on. To see what I mean, have a look at our site on a smart phone or tablet, you can see it looks different to the desktop computer version. Check out Thrives website.

What’s in it for the sales person?

We don’t have dedicated sales people. Our consultants or developers are the ones you’ll meet with, they’re the ones who will be doing your work. Our staff have a great breadth of knowledge across most areas of website development, this is in addition to their area of expertise. You can be confident that you’ll be getting the best advice each time you speak with us.

You might not decide to go with us, and thats ok, we just want you to be informed before choosing a web designer or developer. By asking a few key questions you can get to know a bit more about the developers you’re interested in, and make a decision that’s best for you. Here is the link again to Business Victoria to review their questions and ideas.

Thanks for reading!