As of the middle of 2021, there were almost 2 billion websites estimated to be live and operational online. In 2022, it’s more important than ever before to ensure you have a strong online presence, and that starts with a sophisticated company website.
But creating a great website isn’t managed overnight; you need to work with a web design professional.
Working with a web design agency can give you total peace of mind when it comes to designing your website. But finding the right web design firm for your needs is far easier said than done.
That’s why we’ve written this quick guide to help you out. We’ve listed the core aspects to bear in mind when you’re searching for a web design expert today.
Finding a Web Design Agency: First, Consider What You Need
The first stage to finding a great web design agency doesn’t involve external research at all. Instead, you need to research what exactly you need to achieve from your website.
Every company and individual has a different set of requirements when it comes to website design. You might be managing a retail company, which means you’ll need an advanced online store on your website.
You might be a social media influencer who is looking to expand their online reach through an online portfolio.
Websites can be utilized in several different ways in 2022. But your requirements will determine a large number of factors when it comes to the actual design process.
By considering what you need now, you’re figuring out first just how big of a job your website is. You’re also figuring out how advanced your website design will be, and how experienced a web design guide you’ll need as a result.
Finally, you’re also narrowing down whether your website can be put into a certain category, such as an online store or a company website. This will be vital later when it comes to searching for the right web design agency for your needs.
Make sure to work closely with your team to pin down what exactly you’re looking to achieve with your website. Then, you can move on to the next stage in the process.
Narrowing Down Your Website Design Budget
The next aspect of web design agency researching concerns your budget.
This will be significantly impacted by what you’re looking to create with your website, which is why it’s often important to figure this out first. But these two areas also go hand in hand and can be ascertained simultaneously.
Taking this approach means you’ll need to prioritize which features of your website are vital to its success. You’ll then be able to factor your budget in accordingly, to see if your dream website is achievable with the funds you have currently.
Professional website design can become an expensive endeavor. But there are agencies out there at several different price points.
Some of the main factors that will impact costs include whether your website is hand-coded, or created in a web design tool like WordPress.
You should expect to budget at least around $250 for a very basic design, but this can go up to $10,000+ for an advanced website design.
As with everything in life, you get what you pay for when it comes to website design agencies. If you’re struggling, set out an ideal budget, an average budget, and the most you’re willing to pay before you start.
This can then give you some breathing room if you’re looking to negotiate a final price with a particular agency.
Reviews vs Portfolios vs Testimonials
Once you’ve understood your requirements and your budget, you’re ready to finally start searching for a web design agency.
Just like finding other kinds of business partners, reviews are vital to the research process. You need to be searching for companies that have several positive reviews on their website, on Google Reviews, or elsewhere.
But with website design, it isn’t quite as easy as looking for a few 5-star ratings.
To make sure you’re working with a company that knows what they’re talking about, you need to look at portfolios. Portfolios will provide evidence of their skill level via the websites this agency has already completed in the past.
By checking through a portfolio, you can see first-hand how a website completed by this agency works.
You can also check to see if they’ve worked with any brands or companies that you’re aware of in everyday life. This can be a good sign that the agency you’re potentially working with is legitimate.
If a web design agency doesn’t have a portfolio, it might still have testimonials. These are a lot closer to average reviews, but you’ll usually have a bit more information about the person giving the recommendation.
Ideally, you should be cross-checking all three of these review types to make sure an agency knows its craft.
Find a Specialized Web Design Agency
You should also use reviews to figure out what kind of websites an agency has created in the past.
As we mentioned in the section above, websites have many purposes in 2022. You should find an agency that has experience with the particular kind of website you’re hoping to create.
If you’re a business, you can go even further here and aim to work with a company that understands your sector. This could be an agency that specializes in businesses working in tech solutions, or in B2B sales.
By working with an agency that has a proven track record in your field, you’re guaranteeing an extra layer of expertise. They’ll know what works for companies like yours, so will be able to go the extra mile in your website design.
Think about aesthetics and UI here as well as general content. Certain agencies will specialize in a particular feel of a website that may be just what you’re looking for.
Decide if You Need Additional Services
There are agencies out there that solely specialize in website design services for companies and individuals. Often, this is all you need, but there are times when additional services can go that extra mile.
Some agencies provide website design alongside other services, like SEO, social media marketing, or copywriting. You should always consider whether these additions can transform your approach to your website.
If you’re not confident in your copy, you should be looking for an agency that does website copy alongside website design. If you’re commissioning them for multiple services, the total fee will likely be lower than if you obtained these services from several different agencies.
It also means you’re able to work with a single web design firm for all your website needs. Just like you can have too many cooks in the kitchen, having too many people working on your website can make it hard to focus.
You may have one person working based on outdated website trends, who could then derail the whole project.
Always remember though if you’re looking for extra services, check the reviews that mention them. This will indicate whether a web design company can actually provide quality, or if they’re just grouping add-ons in to increase the final price point.
Give Them a Call Directly
Finally, if you think you’ve found the right web design agency for you, make sure to give them a call. When looking for a design agency, the websites they’ve made are the surest sign of quality.
But you also need to know the people working at this agency are easy to work with. You’ll likely need to collaborate with these people across several months of work before your website is finalized.
The best way to check that you’re on the same page is to call an agency directly. This way, you can also find out more about their portfolio, and how big of a company they are at the moment.
If you can spare the time, make sure to schedule a meeting together to go through what exactly you’re looking for. The more information you provide an agency, the better they will understand your website.
This can weed out agencies who aren’t specializing in your area, or who don’t have a large enough team to handle your project.
If you’re comfortable talking to an agency over the phone or in a meeting, and they’re experienced, you may have found what you’re looking for.
Where Can I Find Out More About Web Design Agencies?
You should now know the process you need to follow to find the best web design agency for you or your company. By trusting in these stages, and following them in order, you’ll be able to work with an agency that has your best interest at heart.
Here at EMPIST, we’re experts in website design as well as many other digital solutions. To find out more about what we do, make sure to contact our team directly.