When approaching a new website design project, there are a number of things you need to know before commissioning someone to do it. Whilst every website is unique, and has its own set of requirements and goals, there is some common ground across all projects, and the more prepared you are, the better your end result will be.
So, without further ado, here are 5 things you should know when commissioning a new website:
1. What is your budget?
Website prices vary massively from company to company. The one thing you can be assured of is that the web industry is no different from any other – you get what you pay for. On paper, some prices might look great and be a lot cheaper than others, but theres far more to consider than the price tag. Ongoing costs are one of the most important things to consider – maintenance, updates, hosting, backups etc.Top Tip: If you are being quoted less then £500 for your website you need to find out exactly what you are getting for your money.
2. What is your deadline?
‘As soon as possible’ is not the correct answer to this one. Most projects can be aligned with external factors, e.g. you need the website up and running by a certain date to form part of your proposal for funding at a meeting with your bank. Alternatively, you may be launching a new product and the website will need to be ready to be able to promote it and/or sell it. If you are just starting out, and are keen to get going, let your prospective designers know this, it will help them to understand and build a roll-out plan accordingly.
3. Where is the content coming from?
Normally there are up to 3 sources of content for a website – the client, suppliers/manufacturers (if you are selling or promoting goods) and the design company. Its a good step to have an idea where your content is coming from, and if you need any of it created by the design company, as this could incur additional costs such as professional copywriting or photography.Top Tip: Believe it or not, waiting for a client to supply content causes one of the biggest delays to website design projects. The more you can get ready in advance, the smoother the process will be, and the easier it will be to hit your deadline.
4. Where will the website be hosted?
Your website (if new) will need a place to live, commonly referred to as web hosting. Depending on your design company, some will be able to offer you hosting, whilst others will require you to purchase hosting from a 3rd party. Any designer worth their salt will help you to find good hosting to match your requirement – after all, they will probably be your first port of call if something goes wrong down the line.Top Tip: Different websites have different hosting requirements so make sure you communicate with your designer the full extent of your website plans for the both the launch and near future to make sure your hosting can stand up to the job.
5. How will your website be updated?
Whilst its more of a long term consideration, how your website will be updated can have a significant impact on the initial build. If you have the time/inclination to update your website yourself, you might want to opt for a CMS (Content Management System) which will allow you to do this. One of the most popular platforms is WordPress, so if this is a route you are exploring, its probably a good place to start. If updating the site yourself is not something you want consider then you will need to budget for any changes down the line.Top Tip: Try and think of how your website will develop over the first 12/24 months, you could save money by including elements in the initial build.
Well, that just about sums up our top 5 things to think about when commissioning a new website! If there’s anything else you’d like to know, or would like to enquire about a new website design in Cornwall project, just ask!