Selecting the right web development company as a partner for your business can be challenging. It would be best if you considered multiple factors before reaching out to any of those. You may face a severe pitfall if you hire a partner with an inexperienced, immature team of web development service providers. Therefore, it’s best to research the company profiles of various web development companies and check out the projects they’ve worked on earlier and how much experience they hold in the industry before shaking hands with them.
This blog will walk you through everything there is to know about how to choose the best web development company for your project. From the pre-approaching steps to the services they offer and how to decide if it’s the right fit, this blog covers it all. So, let’s dive in.
Before Approaching Web Development Company
Before approaching any web development company, there are a few questions you must answer. These questions will give you better clarity about your requirements, help with research and select the best fit for your project.
1. What Kind of Website Do You Want to Build?
Having a clear understanding of what type of website or application you want to build helps you explain to the developers what you are looking for. The better you understand your needs and requirements, the better you can explain them to your web development partners.
Not to mention, you don’t necessarily have to know how to do it. You just need to lay out your business goals, what you want to achieve, and how you want to achieve them in the market.
2. Who Are Your Competitors?
Do research and list down your competitors. Thereafter, knowing your competitors gives you an edge and helps you understand how your idea stands out among the others.
3. Who Is Your Target Audience?
As important as it is to learn about your competitors, it is equally important to know about your end users. Once you have clarity on that, sharing your vision with the web development agency you partner with is more effortless.
4. What Problems Should Your Website Solve?
Do you know your end users’ needs? If yes, you can improve your product to stand out in the market.
5. What Functionality Would You Like to Include?
Be clear about what you want to include on your website. It doesn’t have to be a detailed layout, just a rough overview of the features, elements, and functions.
6. What Is Your Budget?
Having a defined budget is imperative. It clarifies the resources at hand and what more you are willing to pour into the project. Clearly establish if you’ll keep a fixed budget or adjust it to changing requirements, market shifts, quality, and additions.
7. Do You Want to Scale Your Website?
Over time, if your business grows and you want to scale it up by adding new features and elements to your website, you must mention those to the web development agency you partner with.
What Does a Web Development Company offer?
1. Template-Based Website
Website templates are a set of HTML web pages. To design a website, you simply have to add the desired text and images to these pre-designed pages or website templates. These websites made from ready-to-use templates are usually built with CSS and HTML. The main advantage of a template-based website is that you can effortlessly set up your shop online without any help from web development companies or designers.
Some web development agencies use this solution quite often. They are the best option when you want to create multiple landing pages. As a result, you can tell the world about your business or services, and it will rank by search engines too. Moreover, this approach allows you to develop a website or an online shop with limited resources within a short period.
2. Custom-Built Website
Many website developers offer custom website development services. Under this umbrella, they offer custom services to build a website for you as per your requirements from scratch. Certainly, the development process can sometimes be complicated as it entails studying the target audience and developing custom features and designs.
Custom website development requires a reasonable amount of time and budget. It is an excellent solution if you have a developed brand that wants to provide visitors with a unique experience.
3. eCommerce Website
A web development company also offers an eCommerce website. These allow you to sell goods or services online. Online shops can either work on existing platforms or be custom-built. In the IT industry, a web development agency that deals only with the development of online shops is called an eCommerce agency. Their services usually include several e-commerce platforms, different payment gateways, and other solutions from the online retail sphere.
The online shop they set up for you can offer basic features, like a product catalogue, shopping cart, and payment gateways, or include more complex integrations such as social media networks, online marketplace integrations, CRM, and so on.
Note that it comparatively takes more time to create an eCommerce website. Even if it is template-based, it requires more time for the complete setup. The eCommerce web development company adds a product catalogue and tests all the features/functionalities to ensure that the online shop is bug-free.
4. Full-Service Companies
A full-service web development agency consists of several departments. They offer a wide variety of services, including design, development, management, and QA departments. This way, they can provide web development services for building a website and a mobile application. Moreover, their packages usually include everything from web design to custom features and further maintenance.
So, a full-service website development company is the right pick if you’re looking for an “all-in-one” solution. It is more convenient and flexible for future website owners to work with a full-service web development team than control the workflow of a stand-alone freelance developer and designer. Sure, hiring a full-service team can be expensive. However, it is justified as many specialists in the field work on your future website.
How to Choose The Right Web Development Company?
Now that you’re aware of the preparation steps and types of a web development company, you must learn how to choose the right one for your project.
1. Check Portfolio & Case Studies
Firstly, start with checking out the previous clients they’ve worked with. How appealing, industry-relevant, and impressive is their portfolio? How do you feel about the quality of their work? What industries and niches have they worked for? You can find answers to all these questions by looking at their previous work.
Also, check out their case studies. They help you learn how much effort their web developers and web designers are capable of putting into a project. Check out what issues and how they solve them for other clients. Furthermore, check for the volume of projects delivered and satisfaction ratings.
It is crucial to work with an experienced team of web developers who are always on their toes! They must keep up with the market and industry trends. Moreover, partnering with a website development company that constantly stays a step ahead is essential. You can evaluate their experience through social media channels and recent and current projects.
3. Development Process & Technologies
It is crucial to ensure that the technologies and processes the web development agency uses are aligned with your project. for instance, are their services and quotes detailed enough to make you feel you can work on your product together? Also, are the listed technologies adequate for your business problems? Also, are they modern, trending solutions, or something old or niche? Are the stacks that your partner offers easy to support and expand several years from now? Make them answer these questions for you. It’s best to listen to the arguments behind each choice and use your judgment or a second opinion to determine if they’re good ones.
Depending on the technologies they use, there are mainly two types of development teams that a web development company usually covers:
- Frontend Development: It includes creating interfaces for the solutions, ensuring responsiveness, and stunning design.
- Backend Development: It includes ensuring the functional part: managing database queries, calculations, and performance.
It’s best to make sure your partner’s quote is flexible. This gives you a range of project estimates, keeping possible changes in mind. Though fixed-price agreements may seem safer, it’s often just an illusion. In reality, a fixed price plan might mean no room for modifications to any requirements or that there might be a lot of buffer in preparation for changes, making you overpay.
4. Evaluate The Expertise of Their Team
When you reach out to a web development company, they often offer services and technologies in which they’re proficient. Sometimes, that’s not what you want or good for your project. Hence, you must not fall for it at once. It’s best to research and check out their expertise and experience in various industries. You can also check for their team members’ qualifications, what they’ve worked on, and their specialities to get clarity and gain confidence to partner with them.
5. Check the Clients’ Reviews and Awards on Sites Like Clutch, Goodfirms, Glassdoor
Checking for client reviews on websites like Glassdoor, Clutch and Goodfirms always comes in handy. It lets you know if they’re legit, valuable, and worth investing in. Moreover, check for ratings, certificates, awards, and titles too. These will help you recognize their achievement.
6. Check Their Digital Presence
Is the web development agency that you’re willing to partner with present on social media? Social media presence can speak volumes about a company. You can also get some valuable insights about their audience, clients, and the marketplace. Check how they present themselves on social channels. How many followers do they have? How often do they update their wall? Do they get enough engagement? How does the audience respond to their posts? In short, a good number of followers and engagement numbers will only build your trust in them.
Also, check if they run any paid ads. How well have they presented them? What is that you like the most about their social media marketing? Answering these quotations will help you make the right decision.
7. Discuss Your Involvement in The Project
Before proceeding with any other negotiations or project details, you must establish a certain level of trust. When you share your ideas and vision with the web development company you wish to partner with, it’s right to expect the same kind of openness from them. That shows they’re on the same page and as interested and involved as you.
Discuss the development process they will follow. Are there any documents or information they need from you? Usually, they share a set of relevant documents and always keep you in the loop, but it’s best to ask if they don’t. This will show you if their team is reliable and reasonable to move ahead with. In case they’re not ready to share important information with you, consider giving up with them. Moreover, it is essential to establish balance. You can’t expect them to be okay with you calling all the shots and vice-versa. Try building a relationship here for a smoother work process.
8. Other Support Services
Check if the web development company offers support after the project is complete. Partnering with a web development agency that further supports your product is advisable. As your business grows, you will need to make changes to your website. So, choose the one that includes maintenance and scaling of your website.
Also, check whether it will select the best hosting service for your project? Do they offer a hosting service of their own? Is it reliable, and will it provide a seamless experience?
9. Ask for Client References
Every established web development company has previous clients. It’s a decent practice to contact their clients and get a quote from them about their experience. Consequently, if you find out that the former clients are satisfied with their services, you can trust the agency.
10. Evaluate the Quality of The Company’s Website
When you first visit the company’s website, what do you feel? Is the website design awe-striking? Do you think there’s too much content? Or do you think it’s not that smooth or easy to understand? Is there any particular feature or element that you like? How’s the content copy? Is it engaging and hooking?
Answering all these questions about their website will help you make an assumption about how they will manage your project. If they’ve really worked hard on their own website, they’re more likely to put in more effort to build a great one for you.
Pay attention to the UI/UX design, additional features, animations, and the quality of the content they publish. Also, check whether their website design is up-to-date. If yes, also note if they follow all the best practices. If not, it indicates that they might not be able to handle your project.
11. How Do They Communicate & Collaborate
When looking for a website development company, among all the other questions, you must also ask them about their preferred method of communication and collaboration. Do they use a central platform like Slack, or prefer to communicate over email and WhatsApp? The clarity in the communication channel will help avoid misunderstandings. The more streamlined it is, the better it will be for you.
Furthermore, it’s vital to ask for their collaboration practices. Do they use a google sheet to keep track of the progress, or do they use something more advanced like Trello? Several companies prefer using a project management tool to keep everything in one place. Their collaboration practices will determine how efficiently they work together. It will help gauge the impact it can have on your project.
12. Who Owns the Site When It Is Developed?
After the project is finished and the last payment is made, the website development company should give you a contract transferring ownership of the website’s visual design. Unless you or your staff member produced the designs, these belong to the original creator and are licensed to you. Thus, clarifying this with the web development company you partner with is vital.
Having a fair idea of what you’re getting into before approaching a web development company is always good. Now that you’ve read this blog, you know the questions you must answer before approaching a web development business. Moreover, you are aware of the services they offer and how to choose the right fit for your project.
We’re optimistic that this blog has educated you with all the relevant information regarding hiring or partnering with a web development company. Following the tips mentioned above and the steps, you can easily find the best web developers for your project.