There are many considerations involved in shopping for a web developer including their ability to produce the product that is best suited for you, development costs, their development and artistic talents, their ability to code in a way that facilitates search engine optimization, and their ability to participate as a team member with individuals who are outside the company.
A web developer who wonít communicate with you, your staff, or anyone else who is doing work for you, simply isnít worth the bother. Communication after the contract is signed is more important than it is in the sales process. The development process can be tough enough in good circumstances with people who are on the same team.
If you have to constantly track the developer down, make repeated phone calls, the developer won't ask questions, and you are generally feeling like you are pulling teeth, this process is going to feel like a nightmare and you will end up with an inferior product.
Ask questions, get lists of clients and ask them questions. Find out how the website developer is to work with personally, do they come through on time and build over the expectation of quality, and do they go the extra mile? Concentrate on communications skills.
Donít just take the couple references that the developer gives you. Go to their website and look at their portfolio to get names and also do a back-links check to see what other clients they may have that are linking to them.
To do this, go to Google.com and use this formula below in the Google search box to find out who else might link to their page. Copy it just like this and replace their domain name:
Shopping for a developer should be done in the same way you would do it in looking for any long-term business relationship. This is a company that you will probably be with for a long time unless one of you simply cannot stand the other. If this is the case, you become the loser because the developer can simply walk away.
You on the other hand, have a website to protect and possibly to move over to another server. Going with a second developer can also cost you a lot more because the new company is often starting from scratch with some of the graphic elements and if there is any coding involved, it may require some study. If it is coding that is proprietary to the developer, it could also require some code changes.
Bottom line is that you simply have to feel comfortable with the company doing your web design. The more you understand each other and can communicate, the easier it is for them to determine how you want to be presented online. If they care about a long-term relationship with your company, the more they will want to please you.
Use your best negotiating skills when coming up on price. But a word of warning should come in here. Donít beat your developer over the head with price. They may do it out of desperation, but there are many aspects of web development that they can take shortcuts on that you will never see or know about, and these can make all the difference in being found online.It can also come back to plague you when you need some work done later. Like most merchants, when crunch time comes, web developers will prioritize their clients according to their profitability and how well they like them. A threat to take your $50 worth of work to his competition will only be met with a fond farewell.