DIY or Hire a Designer?
You’ve started a business. You’re ready to take it online. Or, you’ve had a website for a while. And now that your business has grown, you need to redesign your site to reflect that growth and all of the changes you’ve been through.
Maybe you designed your first site yourself. But that was a few years ago, and wow! Websites have changed. They’re all mobile, responsive, have pop-ups, opt-ins, parallax (what’s that?!?), drop-downs and animations…
Your head is spinning. But you think, “I can do this. I did it before.”
So you try one of the popular builders. And…it starts to get confusing. All of those cool, fancy fonts. All of those features. And all of those boxes for SEO and analytics and…
You start to doubt yourself.
So you contact a designer or two or three, and your stomach sinks from sticker shock.
What do you do?
A designer’s fee is an investment in your business that can pay off in spades
Hiring a designer is much like hiring a contractor to do work on your house. A good contractor can not only fix something for you, or even create something new for your house, but, when done well, the end result enhances the functionality of your house and the value of your house.
If you don’t have the time, and don’t have the necessary skills to create a website that will represent you authentically, help you grow your audience, get more customers and help you make more money, then spending endless hours in front of the computer – endless frustrating hours ! – trying to figure things out is not a good idea. It’s not saving you money. It’s taking time away from your business.
But you need this new site. And so do your customers.
So how do you go about finding the right person for your project?
- Ask fellow business owners for referrals. If someone you know likes their site, ask them for their designer’s contact information.
- Get on LinkedIn and Facebook and ask people in your circles for suggestions.
- Look for designers who offer a free consultation. This is a good way to get a sense of whether the designer is right for you. Ask how they charge clients, how long it usually takes to complete a website, and what kinds of additional fees they charge for features like membership pages, forums, blog pages and so on.
- Look at the designer’s portfolio. If the designer has case or project studies, even better. You’ll discover how they approached a particular project, the challenges they faced, and you’ll be able to review the final site.
- Listen to your gut. If you feel the designer isn’t quite the right fit for you, it’s possible they aren’t. Remember: this is your business, your website and your online presence. Working with a designer is a highly collaborative process, so they have to understand what your goals are, your needs and they have to get along with you. So don’t rush the process. Hold out until you really have the person or team you want.
A designer can significantly reduce your workload and your stress level. But only if they’re the right fit for you.
About the author
I'm a writer and a web designer. I create one-of-a-kind websites for small businesses and creative entrepreneurs. I help my clients expand their audiences, get more customers and make mo' money. Get my FREE PDF checklist, "Build a Website that Attracts & Converts: The 10 Elements Your Website Needs to be Highly Effective" when you subscribe to my monthly newsletter for industry news, writing and design tips and special offers.