• Lead Blogger, Harford Digital

How to Choose the Right Website Design Company

Updated: Oct 7, 2021

Let’s face it - there are a lot of companies out there that promise a website to help take your business to the next level. But here is what you need to know before you commit to paying hundreds or thousands of dollars for your site.


Not All Web Design Companies Are Created Equal!

Don't get lured in by the promise of a cheap solution to satisfy the website checkbox! A poorly designed website can actually be worse than no website if it doesn’t represent your business well.


Companies like VistaPrint or freelancers on Fiver sometimes offer web design services for just a few hundred dollars, but there's no such thing as a cheap solution if you're truly looking to stand out from the competition. Choosing the right designer may mean investing a little more in someone who knows what makes a website set you apart.


So What Should I be Looking for from a Potential Website Design Company?

Your website is a piece of virtual real estate, and quite often your customer‘s first impression of your business. Don’t just settle for the lowest bidder!


So what are important components you need in your website design?


1. Website Look & Feel

You probably have an idea of how you want your customers to feel about your products or services. And it’s likely that they, too, want a product or service they can feel good about.


Look around at your competitors’ sites. If you were your own customer, who would you choose? What benefit do you think it would bring you if your website was better than others in your industry or local community?


Whether or not you know anything about web design, you will know quality when you see it. Look for example, at the comparison below. Which do you prefer?


But it’s not all about the looks! Which brings us to…


2. Ease of Navigation

Nothing drives potential customers to the “back” button more than a website that is unorganized, difficult to navigate, or dysfunctional. Strong internet design strategy assures that a page is easy to read, process, and appropriately guides users through the stages of the buyer (sales) funnel.


These days there are many services catering to business operators who are used to being able to save money by going the DIY route, but I wouldn’t recommend it. There is an art to building a strong and effective website.


While a nice looking website is definitely important to stand out against your competitors, the way your website is organized is key to keeping users on your site, and converting them to customers.


A well-organized website design will allow users to move through the buyer journey seamlessly - from awareness > consideration > decision (conversion/sale). This means things like easy to read fonts, and thoughtful placement of buttons and images can make a big difference. There are dozens of strategies to assure users should be able to navigate quickly and effortlessly, skimming for the information they need and become loyal to your brand.


Check out our blog post, 3 ways your web design can help customers find your business, for more on the imortance of web design.


But perhaps most important to successful website is something website designers rarely think about at all…


3. Search Engine Optimization

When it comes to a website, getting found by your customers is the whole point. It won’t matter if your website is the best looking and is planned to convert users to customers if they never make it to your site to begin with!


Hundreds, if not thousands of people are likely searching for your products and services every month - but where your potential customers end up has a lot to do with the search results they are shown.

Search Engine Optimizaton, or “SEO” refers to a variety of activities that can improve your chances of being found online. Things like a page titles, mobile responsiveness, the amount or quality of content, and dozens of other factors are factors in the ability of your site to be found online. A great website has a defined keyword strategy and the whole site structure is built around it (read our Small Business Guide to SEO for more on this topic).


Unfortunately, SEO is a technical branch of digital marketing which means web designers are not always well-versed in it. This often means even a newly designed site may not be very effective at all and could need a lot of additional design/development work to be properly optimized for search engines.

When it comes to a website, getting found by your customers is the whole point. It won’t matter if your website is the best looking and is planned to convert users to customers if they never make it to your site to begin with!

So What Now?

Now you are equipped to understand the value of being selective during your search for a website designer. But how do you go about finding the right person to help you?


Ultimately, your best bet is to ask questions once you engage with an individual or company. Look at examples of their work and compare Then with your competitors. Ask them what their strategy is for preparing the content and choosing what pages are needed.


When I started my own marketing agency, my drive was to provide a one stop shop for small businesses in my community. This was largely due to the realization that companies offering web site design services were only providing a small piece of a pretty complex puzzle!


Business owners are busy and rarely have time to learn all the ins and out of a digital marketing strategy. The shame is that most agencies focus on a single thing - the web design, the SEO, etc. which means business owners have to either pay more or use separate agencies for all these services separately, leaving the burden on themselves to learn whether they are really getting everything they really need to be successful.


Hopefully by now you understand a little more of what you need out of a website. And an informed decision is one you can feel good about!


Still Have Questions?

We are Harford Digital Marketing Agency. If you’re seeking more information like this that can help you make decisions about your business’ marketing needs, feel free to poke around our website. We can review your current website and suggest improvements, quote a new project, or even help with growth strategy through paid advertising for no cost or obligation.


Additional questions may be emailed to harforddigital@gmail.com






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