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Hiring a Web Designer in 2021

Creating a website is a big deal – so we want to make sure you do it right. In this blog post we’ll be diving into why you might need a website designer, some tips on picking the right one for you and a number of other informative points! Launching a website for any venture is something to be excited about, as you put yourself and your brand out there onto the internet for public consumption. Research found that 75% of your online presence credibility is based on your website – making it that much more important to make sure it’s done right.

Whether you’re an entrepreneur, designer, businessman or restaurant owner, having an outstanding website is almost crucial to the success of your venture. With the boom in technology and virtually everything now being digitized – your website is the likely base point for most of your prospective and current clients. Designing and running a website is no simple task, and it requires a highly skilled professional to produce one that is both appealing and user friendly.

Websites are usually designed by graphic designers, website developers or coders. And although there are a number of handy websites available that will allow you to customize your website in a relatively simple way, these websites are usually not up to standard of current day competition. In the case that you yourself don’t know how to code, you might want to consider hiring some professional help to get your website into tip top shape!

Finding the right designer for you

You might think that it is not particularly important which website designer you pick, but rather that they possess the necessary skills. However, this is not the case. Essentially, your website designer will be responsible for bringing your brand to life – digitally. They’ll be responsible for setting the atmosphere and tone of the site, as well as the overall customer experience.

With this in mind, it is important that your website designer is increasingly familiar with your brand, your vision, goals and ethics. The right designer creates more than just a website and is now involved in branding more than ever before. They will be responsible for the mood, atmosphere and tone of the primary landing space of your entire brand or business.

With competition heightening each and every day, it’s important to make sure that your brand stands out from the rest. Clients and customers are not only looking for a product or service but an experience. With the right website designer, you can make that happen for yourself and your business.

Things to consider before hiring a web designer

Taking the first step of hiring a web designer can be daunting, so we’ve put together a list of things to consider before starting the process.

  • Ensure you have an adequate budget to spend on your website (to pay your web designer)
  • You have a considerable amount of time before you need your website launched. This will allow for your web designer to efficiently create a site that suits your needs and expectations, without any time restraints.
  • You have ruled out creating the site yourself due to a lack of skills or time
  • You’re prepared to spend a sizable amount of money to revamp your website 
  • You are prepared to maintain consistent communication with your designer and work in collaboration
  • Ensure that your web designer possesses the skills to create a website that works on both desktop and mobile

When you shouldn’t hire a web designer:

  • You’re on a budget and would rather opt for a more affordable option
  • You aren’t available to be directly involved in the process
  • You are on a time constraint

In the case that you would like to have a new website but for some reason cannot invest in a full time web designer at this time, there are a number of handy sites that you can use without having to pay a premium. These sites work as great starting points for any and all website types, and don’t require any prior training or experience with website building. Some examples include SquareSpace, Weebly and Wix to name a few.

What to look out for when choosing a designer

Although the internet is an exceptionally resourceful place, you can encounter offers that are not up to standard. To ensure that you find a skilled designer that is suited to you, make sure to write down a list of predetermined criteria you’re looking for before hiring. 

As a starting point, we recommend you require:

A decent sized portfolio of previous work

One of the easiest ways to survey the qualities of a designer is by taking a look at their portfolio. Designers that are professional should have a portfolio of their past work to present to potential clients. By taking a look at their portfolio you should be able to determine whether they possess the skills or aesthetic you would like your website to have. Try and look for designers with portfolios on websites like Behance or Dribbble.

4/5 star reviews from past clients

Asking for references is a great way to judge the technicalities and experience of working with a given designer. Past clients should be able to comment on the overall disposition of the client throughout a prior collaboration, whether they were able to deliver according to budget and deadlines, and how they interacted with others. Try talking to at least 2-3 different references to get a broad scope and not just one opinion.

Adequate qualifications or experience

Perhaps you are interested in a specific feature on your site that requires a particular skill set to create. Prior to hiring a designer, make sure you lay out all your expectations in order to see whether they are capable of bringing it to fruition. Universal skills that most designers possess include the ability to communicate ideas via reports, prototypes and wireframes. However, JavaScript and other coding languages are a unique skillset that is not familiar to all web designers.

Extensive experience with SEO

SEO or search engine optimization is one of the most crucial components of a website and ensures that your site is marketable and has a boosted visibility amongst the competition. Having a website designer that knows and understands SEO will have a significant impact on the amount of organic traffic you are able to drive to your website.

Where to hire a web designer?

A few places that are definitely worth checking out when you’re searching for a web designer are Fiverr and Upwork. We cover both marketplaces more in depth in this article about hiring a graphic designer.

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