Demystifying the Process: Here’s How You Hire a Web Design Agency

Finding the right agency is the first step in leapfrogging your competition online.

You’ve worked hard to build your brand.

Your product is top-notch and you’re poised to take your business to the next level.

To do that, you need a website that captures and keeps the attention of your target audience.

After all, 48% of consumers say that a website’s design is the single most important factor that points to a business’s credibility.

If you’re not even sure where to start with your web design project, you’re not alone. With the government’s ongoing focus on going digital, more companies than ever are turning to agencies for help with web design in Singapore.

Finding the right agency is the first step in leapfrogging your competition online. Here are six questions to ask in your search.

Know what to expect

Your agency will need to get to know your brand so they can tell your story. It’s important to know how much time and what comes next.

Ask them what a typical design process entails for their clients. How do they track goals and project milestones? Will you have access to the site while it’s in development?

If you’re working with a deadline in mind, communicate it upfront. Can the agency accommodate it in addition to their current client workload?

Hiring a web design company offers you the security of a skilled and experienced team, so that you can nail that first impression for your customers, and start driving business results.

Defining processes and expectations upfront keeps the project (and your partnership) running smoothly.

Now, it’s time to explore some features and functionality for your new website and how your agency will support your vision.

Ensure that your website is ready for modern browsing needs

The whole point of a captivating website is for people to see it, and in today’s uber-connected, mobile society, it’s a must for your website to load properly on the myriad of devices that your customers use.

Most agencies support multi-device optimization, but some charge an additional fee. There a few main development options that agencies typically take, so find out exactly what you’re paying for:

  • Custom: Your website is custom coded for mobile and tablet versions, and completely separate (maintenance is separate too) from your core website. It’s not something we recommend unless there are unique functionalities or experiences that you require for the mobile.
  • Responsive: Highly popular, this option adapts your website so that it fits nicely within the dimensions of different devices. You’ll also get the flexibility to hide features that just don’t load well on a mobile device, or add additional features that only appear on such devices.
  • Plugins: Fast and easy to create a site that’s mobile-ready, but falls short on any customizations in terms of look and feel, or functionalities.

Mobile and multi-device requirements are a key part of modern web design. Once you’ve got that locked down, it’s time to think about how your target audience will find your site after it’s launched.

That’s where SEO comes into play!

Build your website with SEO in mind

Search engine optimization (SEO) is how internet search engines rank your site and its content.

Think of it as your company’s billboard. Your potential customers use the search engine to search for products or services that they’re interested to purchase.

You want your site to be ranking on page 1, because that’s how you catch people when their interest to purchase is high.

If you’re redesigning an existing site, it’s extremely important to check your agency’s SEO knowledge.

Your agency should do an audit of your current site to answer a few key SEO questions:

  • What’s working well?
  • What can you improve?
  • Will your agency use the same URLs?
  • Will they redirect pages?

Thoughtful SEO planning and site mapping mean higher rankings for your website and a better experience for your audience. Don’t neglect this, because the foundation for good SEO really begins with your website.

Now that you’ve got your website’s SEO foundation sorted, start having a candid discussion about pricing for your project.

Know what you’re paying for

Time to find out how much investment it takes for you to get the world-class website you want.

Some web design companies offer a flat quote for your entire project. Others may charge an hourly rate. In either case, find out what costs your contract includes and what it doesn’t, so you know exactly where your money goes.

Does the agency offers User Acceptance Testing (UAT), to ensure that your website handles tasks in real-world scenarios properly?

Will your website come with a warranty, so that you get a peace of mind?

Take time to define a contract that supports your vision and your budget.

Determine who manages your website

You’ll still need a certain level of support after your new website launches into the wild.

How does your agency handle post-launch issues? Some agencies remain on-call for a specified number of days to solve any problems or questions that arise. Others may require a separate support contract.

Before you sign your contract, talk about a plan for website maintenance after the launch. Whether it’s training your team to maintain the site, fixing a bug, or adding a new feature, you’ll sleep easy when you know your agency has it covered.

Once you’ve agreed on a support plan, you can focus on the future of your website and keeping it up to date.

Know what you can do on your own

Great websites are always changing to meet the needs of the brands they serve and the audiences they inform.

Ask your agency how they approach content changes. Can you refresh content yourself, or will you require their help?

Ideally, your website should use a content management system (CMS) that allows you to make changes quickly and without the help of an agency. If you prefer to let someone else manage updates, make sure you understand the costs involved.

High-quality web design and development is just a click away

We love giving businesses a new home on the web.

Ready to create something amazing? Speak to us for more information and kickstart that web design project you’ve been thinking about!

Lisa Tan

Lisa Tan

Lisa wears multiple hats at Appiloque - digital strategy, agency operations, and content marketing. To keep herself sane, her favourite form of entertainment is free and involves reframing reality, changing it up to something ridiculous and playing out imaginative scenarios. No, she's not mad. Yet.

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