Creating websites requires a lot of skill in order to grab users' attention. Research has shown that it will take an internet user about 4 seconds to decide whether to stay on a page or leave, and that leaves a very small window of opportunity to impress.
You need a professional website design agency that can deliver amazing results. Other than just the overall look of the website, users also want to have a rewarding experience when using the website, thus there is more to website design than meets the eye.
Thousands of websites compete for user attention on the web every day. You need people to find your website in this crowded market place and interact with it in a way that leads to more sales for your business. If your company does not have the time, resources and skills for creating a website, you should hand over the task to a professional team.
However, with the many web design agencies available out there, it may be a tricky task choosing the best to work with. The following are some of the qualities that you should look for before hiring a web design agency.
Understand the Value of Good Web Design
Before you jump into the search for a web design agency, you should have a clear idea of what good web design is. This will guide you in making the best decision when settling on an agency. Good web design leads to:
- Consistent brand identity
- Attract more internet users, instead of them navigating away from your page
- Increased conversions from the visitors who come to your page
- Standing out from the competition
- Making changes when needed without starting from scratch
- Opening new doors to better your website and your brand
- Stronger mutual relationships fostering networks and partnerships
Once you understand what good web design can do for your business, it is almost impossible to settle for less.
What is the Website Design Company Capable Of?
The first thing you need to know about a website design agency is what they are capable of doing. The scope of their abilities determines how well they will meet your needs. Some of the ways to find out what the agency can do is:
- Portfolio: the website design company should have a portfolio containing a selection of their previous work. This is a great time to ask questions about how the agency made major design decisions and how these corresponded to the client needs.
- Other Website Examples: a portfolio is a great way to start but it only contains the agency's greatest successes. Asking for further demonstration demands on the spot thinking and you can see what else they have achieved besides what they want to show you.
Branding is a core aspect in successful website design. Any web agency that you will get involved with needs to understand your brand and how to deliver a consistent brand identity throughout your website.
Without business branding, you might as well forget about the website all together. Branding involves your overall business message, your key demographics, and the relation between the two. You need to find out what they have to offer in terms of business branding before you can settle on an agency.
Search Engine Optimization
One of the biggest mistakes that many businesses make today is assuming that search engine optimization comes after website design. With the kind of search engine algorithms today, SEO should be integrated into the website design.
This is a very important factor to discuss with the web design agency and if there is no mention of it, you should consider this a red flag. SEO is the collection of strategies and techniques used to get search engines to identify and rank your website a potential source of information that internet users may be looking for.
The web design agency should have a keyword research process in place, among other search engine optimization tactics so more people can find your website through search engines. The prospective agency should have an idea of what phrases and words that people are typing into search engines related to your business and how they can leverage these for SEO.
Now it is time to get down to the actual design details. These details are essential to achieving all the above and should be key concerns in your search for a web agency. Today, website design requires modern design and a high level of usability. There are a few concepts of web design that every designer should be conversant with today.
You need a web agency that can deliver:
- Responsive Website Design: the variety of devices that people can use to access the internet has increased over the years. Web design agencies should no longer simply focus on designing websites for desktop computers. Responsive website design encompasses the different devices that people could be using to access the website. From laptops and tablets to smart phones, responsive design ensures that a websites adapts to whichever device or platform is in use to offer great user experience.
- Latest Trends in Web Design: web design technology is a moving and morphing target. It is quite difficult to conclusively say you have hit the nail on the head with a design. You need a web agency that understands the latest trends in website design and what new technologies they can use to identify this. You may notice the difference in design techniques over time in the web agency's portfolio and this is a good sign that they can keep up.
What Happens after the Website Design is Complete?
The role of a web design agency does not end after the website goes live. You need a website design agency that can provide support for technical difficulties even after completing the design process. Some creases are only noticeable after the website goes live and these need to be ironed out. Website upgrades and updates are also necessary throughout the lifespan of the website.