Professional web development has become such a crowded field that it can be difficult to pick a web designer or design firm that will truly offer you a top-notch website. But there are ways even a layperson can recognize a high-quality website design and development company. Here are five signs a designer or design team has the skills you need:
- They Keep It Simple, Stupid
Just because a website design looks simple doesn’t mean it’s amateurish. In fact, those two factors are normally inversely correlated. Great web designers know that the goal is drawing users in to a few key aspects and making it clear what they should do, rather than distracting them with fancy designs.
- They Know Your Competition
It’s very important that your website have the right relationship with those of your competitors. Professional web development companies should offer a certain level of market research to ensure that you’re meeting industry standards — remember, users like what they know — while still differentiating your offerings so site visitors will choose you instead of the other guy.
- They Talk About Mobile as a Focus
If your initial consultation with a development company involves a discussion of how your website will look and work but doesn’t focus on mobile, then it’s time to walk out the door. Web designers use to talk about “mobile friendly” design, but what’s necessary now is “mobile first” design.
- They Integrate Your Site
Your website is, first and foremost, a marketing tool. That means that it should integrate well with other aspects of online marketing, such as social sharing. You can even ask for a feature that automatically shares any new blog posts or other content on your social media accounts. And since measurement is one of the most important aspects of marketing, you should also ensure that analytics are built in so you can see how your site is performing.
- They Offer CMS Training
The rise of the content management system is a good thing for most businesses, since these dashboards allow you to update sites without knowing a lick of computer code. However, a CMS is no good if you don’t know how to use it. Make sure your contract includes training on how to use every feature your website offers.
What other factors can be used to judge the quality of web development firms? Discuss in the comments.