April 22, 2016
5 Things To Consider When Hiring A Web Developer
Price is an important consideration when finding the right web developer, but not for the reasons many think. Web design and development is possibly one of the most relevant services when it comes to the old adage, “You get what you pay for.” The difference between an ineffective, “billboard” website, and an alluring, profitable digital presence is *insert Trump Voice “huuuuuuge”. Opportunities for “free website design” are around every corner, luring you in with low monthly fees and guarantees. Take a moment to consider the reason you went looking for a web developer in the first place. What do you want to get out of your website?
When assessing the cost of hiring a web designer and developer to build a website, consider the fact you’re making an investment. No savvy investor funnels his money into a stock because it’s cheaper than the alternative. A successful investor analyzes their different stock options in depth, and chooses the portfolio that will provide the greatest return on their investment.
Your website opens the door to the digital realm. With nearly 70% of consumers shopping online every month,1, and the opportunity to reach the 3 billion2 who have access to the internet, it stands to generate exponentially more revenue than your brick and mortar. With business owners paying an average of over $2300/month3 for 100 square feet of commercial space, the cost to develop an effective website is microscopic in comparison. When searching for a web developer, don’t cut corners. Find a knowledgeable web developer who is going to be able to produce the best return on investment for your business.
WEB DEVELOPER CORE SERVICES
The worldwide web is no longer the simple environment we knew a decade ago. The internet has become incredibly competitive, stuffed with poorly executed websites, making it exponentially more difficult for your brand to stand out.
The industry of web development is composed of many different fields of knowledge and expertise. A web developer is no longer as effective standing alone. Web development is only one component in creating your online brand. Each field of study is vital to painting the bigger picture. Search engine optimization, conversion-focused web design, quality content creation, and social marketing all play integral roles in the success of your web developer.
When seeking out a web developer or marketing agency, look at their range of services. A professional marketing agency understands the important role each component contributes towards developing your dominant web presence. Is the web developer capable of optimizing for mobile and swift download speeds to prevent search engine penalization? Will they create unique and optimized content to put you in touch with your target consumer? Do they understand how to design around content? Will your website be designed to convert visitors into paying customers?
CMS + CUSTOM CODING > CUSTOM-CODED
How do you plan to maintain or update your website? Site maintenance is a very common oversight when searching for a web developer– and at an industry average hourly rate of $140.00/hr, it can prove to be a very costly one. Regardless of your industry or business needs, your site will need to be updated. Whether it be a new product line, a thriving company looking to expand, or simply to maintain relevance with regard to the times, there will be a point in time when you will need to renew your approach. A good web developer will provide you the tools necessary to keep your site relevant.
Only 25% of all existing websites operate with the aid of a CMS, (Content Management System) and that number is rapidly growing. A content management system provides you with a the means to update, expand, and manage your website. With a CMS, you don’t need a web developer or the ability to code for simple changes and updates that so often eat away at marketing budgets. As a business owner you can ensure the most timely and effective content is viewed by your reader4
A CMS will undoubtedly save you time and money. There is a plethora of different CMS’s to build your website but there is only one king, WordPress. WordPress accounts for 57.1% of CMS built websites, and for good reason. The user interface of WordPress is far superior in terms of ease of use. If you can manage your Facebook for business page, you will have no trouble managing a WordPress site. WordPress has over 39,000 add-ons5, including CRM, Analytics, e-commerce, and nearly every tool imaginable for scaling your business in the future and meeting unforeseen needs.6
Keep these facts in mind while you’re searching for the best web developer. Don’t get trapped paying hourly fees down the road for simple site maintenance. Find a web developer and digital marketing agency who build with your budget in mind. If your web developer cares for you and your business, they will build within a CMS, more specifically, within WordPress. Be hesitant choosing a company utilizing their own proprietary CMS, proclaiming its superiority. A majority of the time these proprietary CMS’s have bugs, and they definitely don’t have the scalability of a CMS like WordPress. The web developer you choose should have your interest in mind, allowing you to invest your money wisely-towards strengthening your overall digital marketing presence.
A WEB DEVELOPER WITH ROI IN MIND
A great web developer is backed by a great designer. The web developer you choose to build your website should have an understanding of the need for a visually appealing and custom design. Just the same, that great designer needs to comprehend the elements necessary to build an optimized website. Before even thinking about opening up illustrator, the developer, SEO specialist, and content writer all need to devise a strategy.
Pre-made templates blatantly ignore the fact your website is an extension of your brand. There are currently thousands of other companies using the same templates. Sadly, that means there are thousands of failed attempts to create a site that embraces the fundamental elements of thousands of businesses. Your web developer should be backed by a designer who is infatuated with your business, your mission, and the elements that make you unique. An effective web developer utilizes the many talents of their team.
Content Is King– Content is what search engines will use to understand your purpose. It will communicate with visitors why your product or services are the best. Content is what will build longstanding, profitable consumer relationships. Have a content marketing strategy in place prior to designing. With a strategy in place, site design should fit the mold accordingly. Design needs to complement your content marketing strategy, guiding the user’s eye, promoting converting visitors to paying customers.
FIND A PARTNER IN YOUR WEB DEVELOPER
When searching for a web developer, find a partner. Find an agency that has that same itch you had when you decided to go for broke and start out on your own. Find a web developer who is knowledgeable, but willing to listen. The world of digital marketing is changing every single day. There’s no such thing as a one-size-fits-all when it comes to a digital marketing strategy. Search for a developer that has surrounded themselves with a group of experts, insightful and current with respect to their individual roles in the process. Your website is your most profitable investment in your future, with incredible profit margins and boundless opportunities. If it’s seems too good to be true, it probably is. Remember, there’s no such thing as a free lunch..