3 Things To Consider Before Hiring a Designer To Build Your New Business Website
Modern day business owners who are interested in growing their business need a professional looking website to attract new customers.
You might need a simple website that explains what you do and how you can help a customer.
Maybe what you offer is more complex, so you need a website that can provide a more in-depth look at your products and services.
Many business also want the ability to sell their products or services through an online store.
No matter what type of website you need to grow, a main focus should be to convert your visitors into fans (aka customers). The most successful business owners understand how valuable it is to hire a professional web designer, but the process of finding the right one for you can be intimidating.
Fortunately, we put together a list of the 3 things you should think about before you hire a designer.
This is a helpful guide for business owners, entrepreneurs and marketers who want a website design that works for their brand.
Why do you need a new business site?
Most businesses have some version of a website already (contact us asap if you don’t!), so it’s natural to question why they’d need a new one. This is best answered by splitting it up into 3 parts: understanding your ideal customer, learning why you matter to them, and determining if your current website is pulling its weight.
Your Ideal Customer
Who are your customers? This isn’t a trick question. How would you define “your customers”? Is it a specific segment of the population? What segment (or segments)?
You probably already know the answers to these questions but maybe you haven’t written them out before. Take the time to write (or type) this info out. It’s not only a useful exercise for you but will come in handy when you find the right designer to work with.
What do your customers do? Now it’s time to think about how they spend their time. Do they work full time? Are they parents? Students? What other things occupy their time (and attention)? Again, you might already know these answers but spend some time writing them down.
After that exercise, you should be able to summarize your ideal customer in a sentence or two.
Why do you matter?
You know from the exercise above that your ideal customer is very busy. Capturing their attention isn’t going to be easy, so you need to figure out what value you add to their lives.
The best way to do this is look back at why your current customers chose your services and/or products. If you haven’t already talked to them, then pick up the phone (literally or figuratively) and ask. Keep track of all the answers you get and look for trends. What you want to identify are the common things that most (if not all) your customers say were the most important reasons that they chose your company (especially when compared to alternatives and competitors).
By the end of this exercise you should have a list of why you matter to your current and past customers.
If you’re trying to attract new customers similar to this group, then it’s pretty safe to say they’ll think in a similar way (if this is a new product, pay extra close attention to #3: Web Designer vs Brand + Marketing Strategy). Now you know why you matter to prospective customers and what your strengths are as a business.
Pulling Its Weight
Running a business is often a balancing act between order and chaos. It requires you to manage a lot of moving parts, processes, and individuals in order to successfully complete your work. Each of those pieces should add value to your business. Your website should be adding value to your business, aka it should be pulling its weight.
Website technology is advancing at a rapid pace and changing how customers not only interact with brands and companies, but also what they expect from those interactions. They have more information at their fingertips and find themselves splitting their time between more activities. This means that when a customer lands on your website, you have less time to make a good first impression.
Ensuring your website is not only up-to-date in design and capability, but that it also properly explains why you’re better than your competitors is no longer optional.
Part 1 and 2 above helped you identify who your customers are and why you matter to them. If you combine this information with a good strategy and well executed web design, then your site is going to be supporting your business and pulling its weight.
Are drag and drop website builders a good choice?
Yes and no.
Yes, because when used by a pro, they can cut down on the time required to complete some parts of the design and development process. This increase in efficiency can reduce project complexity and timelines. They can also enable clients to make minimal updates on their own and make designer-led updates run more smoothly. All of these things can mean cost savings for the client.
One downside to drag and drop website builders is that they can give false hope to a business owner looking to save some money on a website. Like any skill, it takes time and effort to become proficient at using these tools.
To stand out and succeed in the modern business world, your website needs to meet customer experience and quality expectations while supporting their needs and selling the value of your company’s products and/or services. This requires alignment between your brand and marketing strategy, and a well executed web design.
Web Designer vs Brand + Marketing Strategy
Building the right kind of website experience that meets modern day consumer expectations for quality, and does a good job of promoting your business value and converting visitors into prospects (or ideally, customers) is a complex process. If done well, your website can become a powerful tool for use in growing your company.
What’s The Difference?
A web designer is traditionally the person who designs the overall look and flow of your website. Most modern designers will also have the ability to write the code and launch your website (known as web development). The process of finding one of these modern web designers has been made easier with the popularity of job search and freelance platforms, however, they may not be the right fit for everyone.
If asked, every business would like more customers. Those businesses that take the time to understand who their customers are and what they value (see #1 above) are positioning themselves to pull ahead of their competition. In the right hands, that information and insight can be turned into a brand and marketing strategy that aligns business goals with customer expectations and modern website technology.
What does that mean? Hiring a web designer to design and develop your website could work, but you’ll get more from your money in the long run if you find someone who can create a professional web experience that aligns with your company and customers in a seamless fashion.
Finding these right hands is a challenging task, as they need to have visual design and web development skills, experience launching and growing brands and companies, and a keen understanding on how to properly align brand and marketing strategies.
If you’re in the market for these services then connect with us at Design Swell. Our team of marketing and brand specialists combine design know-how and industry best practices to create holistic and memorable brand experiences that make customers stop, look, and remember.