Are you in the process of finding a web designer for your new website? Have you already hired someone for your website? Here’s a list of signs that a certain web designer might not be the best fit for the job.

The pricing looks suspicious

Has a designer offered to build your website for less then $1,000? There’s a good chance that they’re not experienced or serious and won’t be able to deliver an efficient and well-designed website. We all want to spend as little as possible for a functional website that looks great and ranks and converts well. This just isn’t going to happen.

With a cheap website comes cheap experience and design. When looking for advertising and building your brand on the web, these aren’t things you want to convey. You simply get what you pay for. If you do decide to hire a cheap designer, it is very likely that you’ll be finding a more expensive designer in the future. Unfortunately going cheap the first time you end up with the cost of the good designer plus the cheap designer.

No regular contact

Projects are typically approached with loads of enthusiasm and energy, the same should happen with your website development. Keeping this momentum is key throughout the entire web project. If the your designer loses contact with you, the project loses momentum. A sudden silence on the part of the designer is a bad sign. Typically we here at Build Your Online like to stay in contact on a weekly basis, keeping you updated with progress and seeking information.

Their goal is creativity

If the number one goal for your web designer is creativity, then you can probably expect trouble. Take a cue from what other buyers demand and do the same. Most want web designs which make it easy for visitors to find information on their brand. A great layout with an engaging visual are just part of the experience. Someone to equip design with functionality is harder to find then a professional just interest in the look.

Aesthetic beauty isn’t as important as good content organization. The better the structure of the website, the longer the user stays on your website. The longer someone is on your page, the higher chance you have to convert them into a customer. Make sure to double check the priorities of your web designer before hiring them.

They’re related to you

Hiring someone you cannot fire is almost always a mistake. If your web designer is related, chances are your project will require corrections. This has the same effect as going with a cheap designer, you end up paying twice. You’re stuck paying for the relative and then the redesign efforts. But you got the website for free from the relative? How about all the potential customers you lost due to the inadequate design. That’s money out of your pocket just the same, not really that “free” in the end.

They live in a different country

Before you consider looking at other job markets to find professionals who will do the same job for a decidedly cheaper price, you should know the risks. Even if they speak English and know their way around the trade, you’ll need experience in working with people form different countries. You need to know how to vet foreign designers and if you don’t prepare for a very frustrating experience managing someone who doesn’t understand your vision.

Wrong idea about web design

This is a common mistake that occurs often, and its created by the misunderstanding of what web design means. Web design is not about the IT, it is about marketing and branding your company digitally. Many companies are still convinced that having their IT employees reach out to web design agencies is a good idea. The individual, group, or division should be the one responsible with interfacing with your web design firm.

You’re your own web designer

Attempting to be your own web designer often leads to serious problems. Remember web designers have years of experience building different kinds of websites, something you can not learn in hours or weeks. Again, cheapening out here may save you an expense, but it greatly reduces your potential income from your online presence.

You built a website using a web design tool

A cheap web design tool is easy to use and amateurs can figure it out within an hour of training. It however cannot equal the knowledge web designers have acquired. Knowing how to use a builder is not the same as knowing how to design a highly performing website that brings in traffic and converts that to new customers. You should think again before using a free web design tool.

Lack of copywriting

A good web design firm realizes that content creation is the biggest challenge clients go through. They will be prepared to tackle the issue on the very first meeting. A bad web designer won’t have a solution to help you with this issue, and will never warn you about the potential complications or delays. A few potential solutions we use at Build Your Online is that the client can create the content themselves on a set timeline, we also have internal staff that can assist in writing copy for a portion or the entire website.

Not enough questions asked

If your web designer isn’t asking questions, especially at the beginning, then this is a bad sign. They should be asking about everything throughout the kickoff and strategy phases of the project. If they’re not asking these questions then they’re clearly not prepared to take on the task. At Build Your Online we have created a web design questionnaire to get the ball rolling in the right direction.

No conversion strategy

A great web designer will be help you defined your primary and secondary conversions. These can be phone calls, email sign-ups, e-commerce purchases, contact forms, or clicks buttons. Primary conversions are sales made on the website or sale inquiries. Secondary are forms meant to capture email addresses and build a long-term relationship with consumers. Every web designer is to ask how you’d like to be contact and how your clients prefer contacting you. If they don’t give this a thought, you’re in for trouble.

Forbidden Images – Headset Hottie

This has become something of a joke among internet consultants. How often have you seen the stock photo of an attractive woman in a headset on a contact page? If you spot this, you know you’re dealing with a bad web designer. This image greatly cheapens the appearance of your website, and makes your web presence look very dated.

Forbidden Images – The handshake

Another typical stock photo done to death by web designers is an image of two men shaking hands. Many consider this kind of imagery a red flag and a sign of the web designer’s lack of skill. And that goes not only for professionals working in web design – an average web user will notice it as well. It won’t help your website achieve its goals and will only occupy precious space.

They’re working for to many clients

Some web designers believe new clients can be added to their work load at any time, regardless of how many they’re already working for. This is bad news for you, and their other clients. Overloaded designers aren’t able to properly focus on a project and the design will usually suffer. At Build Your Online we manage our workload and have set deadlines built into every project.

Lack of architecture strategy

Custom web design is more similar to building a house then you’d think. Before a designer sits down to work on different page, they need to create a basic site architecture. Mapping out a wireframe for each and every page of your website is crucial for the entire process.

No scope of work

Lack of definition in the scope of work leads to major problems during the development of the project. An effective scope of work will detail all work to be performed and delivered. When meeting with web designers for the first time and discussing the details, it is key that both of you agree to the scope of work before the project begins. These details should be laid out in the proposal, contract, or some other form between the two parties. This ensures you that you are getting what you expect, and protects everyone involved.

Lack of SEO Strategy

Your web designer needs to possess a fair amount of knowledge about local SEO. SEO is a critical part of any new web project, as it is what brings traffic to your website. No matter how pretty your web design looks or how well its designed. If no one visits it, then it is all for nothing. If your designer doesn’t mention, or doesn’t have questions to your SEO questions, you may find yourself with an under-performing website.


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