It’s easy to get carried away when building a new website. For many potential clients, it will be the first impression they receive, so you want it to be perfect. However, like any other project, cost overruns can occur if care is not taken. So here are our tips on how to avoid paying more than you need to on your website.
Give Clear Instructions
Unfortunately, we haven’t mastered the art of mind reading yet (but we’re working on it!).
Unclear instructions can lead to misunderstandings and more time spent getting things correct. If you need us to change something on your website or in a design, be as descriptive as possible. If emailing, use screenshots and read back what you’ve written before hitting the send button. Make sure you also highlight the exact page you’re looking at – we often get emails with text that needs to be added but no explanation as to where to put it.
Do Your Research
You don’t have to walk into your first meeting with us knowing exactly what you want. However, taking the time during the planning process to research different ideas is helpful. If you can formulate a clear idea of what you do and don’t like, before the graphic designer begins, it will save time on alterations in the future.
Don’t just leave it up to the graphic designer to do what she thinks is best. Yes, she is great at her job, but she doesn’t know your unique taste and business requirements. Some direction still needs to be given.
Consider the Functionality You Need
Adding extra functionality to your website can increase interest in your business. The sky is the limit when you consider what’s possible – contact forms, interactive maps, search bars, online stores, calendars, members only sections - I could go on.
It can be tempting to incorporate all the bells and whistles to impress your customers and beat the competition. However, before deciding to splash out, stop and answer these questions – is it something that will help me reach more potential clients? Is it something that will save me time? Does this benefit justify the extra cost? In other words, is it an investment worth making?
If you own a retail business, it’s well worth your while to consider an online store. Encouraging people to buy your products without having to leave the couch is invaluable. However, you might also be eyeing off an interactive events calendar that you’ve seen on a competitor’s website. If you only hold a sale once a year, there’s no point.
Think about the future needs of your business
Your business will evolve in the future as you expand and adapt to meet a changing industry. That’s why building your website on a platform that can change with your business is so important.
We build our websites using WordPress for this exact reason. It makes it possible to add new functionality, or even a whole new look, in the future without needing to completely redesign the site.
Using the example of the retail store above – you might decide that your business isn’t ready to handle online orders right now. However, as it grows, and you hire more staff, moving online is a good way to expand and reach new customers. With any of our websites, this is something that can be added in the future.