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For individuals, business owners, and entrepreneurs that are looking to get their first web design project off the ground or have an existing website that they just want to tweak, the hiring process can be a daunting task. It’s easy to feel lost in the sea of web design companies out there, especially if you’re unfamiliar with the web development process.
To help streamline the web design firm’s hiring process, WhoopsDonuts has created a list of 50 questions to ask the web design company that you might consider hiring to build your site.
1. What is your main focus?
Is the web design company that you are considering hiring a full-service firm or will they simply build your site and then pass you onto a separate company for SEO, Adwords, and other services?
2. How do you build a website?
Does the web design company have the experience, knowledge, and skills to build your site, or do you need a firm that specializes in certain areas?
3. Why should I choose your firm?
This is the million-dollar question. Why should you choose this web design company and what can they do for you that other companies cannot?
4. Can you build my website according to the current guidelines and parameters for search engines?
Can you guarantee that your site will be search engine optimized? Are you familiar with the current guidelines for page structure, keyword density, and other elements that are critical to search rankings?
5. How long will it take for you to build my website?
Do you have a specific time frame for building a site or could the project take several months? Will you provide weekly updates on the project’s progress and will you be working with my personal time frame in mind?
6. What is your success rate?
What is the web design company’s success rate for completing projects on time and meeting all of their clients’ specifications?
7. What is your refund policy?
Do you have any type of refund policy and, if so, what are the guidelines? For example, how will cancellations be handled, and do you have a penalty clause?
8. What type of revisions will I be able to make after the project is completed?
It is important that you have the ability to make revisions after your website has been completed so it will continue to grow with your business. What type of revisions will be included for free?
9. Do you have references that I can contact?
In addition to examples of the web design company’s work, it is important to speak with current and past clients about the quality of their services.
10. Can I request any specific technologies or templates?
Do you require me to use the design elements that you feel are appropriate for my website or will I have the opportunity to choose my own design elements?
11. Will my website be protected with a secure certificate so potential customers can feel safe when making online purchases?
Does the web design company provide secure certificates for e-commerce websites, or will I need to find another company that can?
12. How quickly can I get started?
Depending on the type of industry that you are in, time is crucial when it comes to launching a website. Can I proceed with the project immediately or is there a waiting list?
13. Are you familiar with my industry?
Is the web design company familiar with your specific industry or do they work with a wide variety of industries? What types of sites have you built for companies in my field?
14. Are you familiar with my competition?
Can you provide examples of past projects that you have done for companies in my industry and what type of sites did they have? What makes your services above and beyond the competition?
15. Where can I see samples of previous work that you have done?
Are you able to provide a list of websites that you have completed for past clients? What type of sites did they have and what were their rankings on search engines?
16. Can you provide me with a list of references that I can contact for more information?
17. What are your office hours?
If I need to contact the web design company for any reason, what are their office hours, and during what time of the day can I expect a response?
18. Do you offer any type of maintenance or hosting services?
What type of services will the web design company include in their project quotes? For example, will they include hosting services or simply the design and development of the website?
19. Do you have any additional services that I can purchase from you?
Do you offer any additional website design or development services such as hosting, domain name registration, and search engine optimization? Are the rates for these services competitive or are they significantly more expensive than your standard service package?
20. Can you provide me with any references that will speak to your knowledge and expertise in this field?
21. How long have you been in business?
22. Can you send me examples of your most recent work?
23. Do you design websites for large companies or is your focus exclusively on small businesses?
24. Can you provide me with any information on the features and benefits of the services that your company offers?
25. What is your design process?
How do you begin your design process? Are there any steps that I can expect to see during the web design process? Are they different for a small, medium, or large-sized business?
26. How do you define success in a web design project?
For example, how does the web design company measure success? Do they include things such as how well the website ranks on search engines or are there other measurements that are included?
27. Can I see examples of your design style?
28. How long will each stage of my website take to complete?
29. Can you provide me with references from clients that I can speak to?
30. How many revisions of my website will you include in the initial quote?
31. Do you provide training to new clients on how to update their websites?
32. Will I be required to sign a contract?
What type of contract will the web design company provide to me? Are there any additional charges that are not included in your standard service package?
33. How quickly can you begin?
34. What payment methods do you accept?
35. Who will own the rights to my website?
Once the website is completed, who owns the rights to the website? Is there an additional fee that needs to be paid if I wish to keep the rights to my website?
36. Can you provide me with references of past clients that I can speak to?
37. What is your turnaround time for a quote?
How quickly can you provide me with a quote based on my current specifications and needs? What happens if I need you to provide me with a quote within 24 hours? Will there be an additional charge for this service?
38. Can I see examples of your work online?
42. How do you prioritize requests for updates and additions to existing websites over new website design projects?
43. Are there any additional fees that will be included within the initial quote?
For example, are there going to be any other fees such as hosting services or domain name registration? Will they be included within the initial quote or will I be required to pay for them separately?
44. How do you determine your billing rates?
How much are you billing me per hour for this project? What are your hourly rates based on? Are they lower or significantly higher compared to the industry average?
45. How long have you been in business?
46. Do you provide any types of ongoing website maintenance services?
47. Can you provide me with an example of a schedule for updates and maintenance?
48. How much training will I receive to ensure that I can properly update my website in the future?
49. Do you have any additional recommendations that will help me to improve the overall functionality of my website?
50. Do you have a guarantee?
What kind of guarantee do you provide for your services and what specific steps can I expect to take should I wish to change service providers in the future?
Hiring a web design company can be a daunting task. We have put together a list of the top 50 questions to ask a prospective web design company in order to get the most value for your money.
Answer honestly. If you don’t know, just say so. Web design companies will appreciate the fact that you expect them to give forthright answers.
Asking the right questions is one of the best ways to get a good idea of how knowledgeable, experienced, and dependable a web design company actually will be. This list is by no means complete, so feel free to add any questions you think will help you find the top web design company for your needs.