Many clients come to us for their very first website, and we love working with these kinds of businesses. After we’ve signed the contract and start the project planning, we give our usual speech about the website process. Here are some things that people having a website designed may benefit from understanding:
We always make sure our clients have the proper expectations for their website. One of the most unrealistic most first time website owners have is that the moment their website is launched they will be listed on Google on the first page. In fact, it takes a little bit of time to come up even for your own company name – it isn’t immediate.
Another huge expectation is that by simply having a website up means that business will flow in. Just having a website is not web marketing – you still need to get your website in front of people to attract new visitors.
We can’t do everything for your website – although we’ll certainly try so the process is as easy as possible for our clients. Depending on the project scope, clients may need to provide the website outline, content, images and other materials. There is always an emphasis on getting these materials together sooner rather than later as 98% of the projects that take longer than expected are a direct result of our clients not being able to collect materials on time.
We like to make sure that every client knows what we’re doing for their website and when to expect to see deliverables. We feel it’s important, especially for the first timers, to have a good understanding of the whole website process and how long things can take. We like to establish a base timeline for things like when the first design comp will be available, when the HTML templates will be built, when the content management system will be setup, etc.
Of course, a web design timeline is fluid. Going back to repsonsibilities, a timeline can easily get extended when clients don’t provide materials in a timely manner or something unexpected comes up on our end with another project.
With all communication, it goes both ways. Often times we will request materials from a client and not hear anything for several weeks. It really helps the web designer to coordinate multliple projects when there is at least an estimated time to receive materials. For us, we are obsessive about working efficiently as we like to respond to client requests as quickly as possible (and ideally within a few minutes of receiving the request – yes, I said minutes, not days). If we know when we will have what we need to move the project along, it helps every project we are working on including yours.
Another important aspect of effective communication during the web design and development process is to make questions or concerns known as soon as possible. In some cases, we’ve had a client who kept quiet about their approved design concepts missing a key element they were hoping for. They thought we would implement as we were building the site. Not until we were moments away from launching the site did they chime in about the missing element. It was no problem for us to go back and fix it, but this pushed the website launch back several days and could easily have been avoided. Our goal here at AshWebStudio is to make sure you are absolutely happy with what we are creating for you so if something is off definitely say something. We’re more than happy to make things perfect for you.