Hiring A Web Developer

Hiring A Web Developer

Today, most businesses want a​ website. Some already have one. Others want one. They don't want to​ hire it​ staff and​ probably can't afford any. and​ in​ most cases, an​ in-house it​ staff, especially for​ your typical small business, just isn't necessary. But, that doesn't mean that you have to​ go without or​ will be forced to​ use some cookie cutter website or​ a​ personal Frontpage experiment gone awry. You can hire a​ web developer/designer to​ create a​ professional website for​ you, set it​ up, then hand it​ over to​ you for​ you to​ do what you want with it. But, how should you go about finding someone to​ do this? What should you look for? There are literally thousands of​ companies/individuals out there offering to​ do your website. How do you pick from this large group?

What Do You Want?
The first step is​ to​ decide exactly what you want on your website. This is​ very important as​ it​ will determine what the​ requirements are and, in​ turn, what skill set your web developer needs to​ fulfill your needs. Here are some questions to​ ask of​ yourself:

* What kinds of​ information do you want to​ have on your site? Approximately how large do you envision the​ site (# of​ pages)?

* Will your site require regular updates? Do you want to​ do these updates yourself?

* Will you be engaging in​ e-commerce on this website?

* Will you need a​ database?

* How fast do you need the​ job done?

* What is​ your budget?

Start Your Search

Doing a​ web search for​ someone that has the​ skills you will need for​ your website will still give you a​ humongous list of​ possible choices. Referrals are often the​ best method of​ weeding people out. if​ someone recommends a​ developer, it​ is​ because they are happy with the​ service they were provided. So, if​ someone recommends a​ developer to​ you, you should check that developer out and​ see if​ they have the​ skills you will need from them.

Often, the​ web developers you are pondering are not located in​ your town. in​ today's day and​ age, this is​ not usually a​ problem. Yes, there are instances where a​ face-to-face meeting is​ really beneficial, and​ if​ you are the​ kind of​ really considers this meeting important, you should limit your search to​ developers within driving distance of​ your location. Otherwise, the​ internet and​ phone system provide all the​ communication you will need, regardless of​ distance.

The first thing to​ do when considering a​ developer is​ to​ check out their website.

* is​ the​ website well-designed and​ attractive?

* is​ it​ easy to​ navigate?

* Are there any broken links?

* is​ the​ information complete (introduction to​ staff, company location, contact methods, etc.)?

* Does the​ site load quickly?

* is​ there a​ portfolio? (Very important. a​ developer without a​ portfolio to​ display is​ a​ total question mark. You simply don't know if​ the​ people are good or​ are snacking on doritos trying to​ figure things out as​ they go).

* What skills does the​ developer have? Do they do design only, or​ can they do dynamic web development and​ database design? Also, ensure that they do not advertise themselves as​ a​ web designer but focus mainly on print media. Internet design and​ print design are different ballparks with different requirements. Also, keep in​ mind that good use of​ Dreamweaver or​ Frontpage does not in​ itself make a​ web designer. Check their portfolio and​ ensure the​ developer really knows his stuff. a​ person well-versed in​ internet development should know not only about creating the​ site, but also maintaining it, marketing it, and​ promoting it. Ideally, a​ web developer has successfully done all of​ the​ above on his own sites.

* Does the​ site offer customer testimonials? Read them. And, you might even contact those clients independently to​ ask them questions of​ the​ service you were provided.

Small Freelancers vs. Big Firms
You need to​ decide if​ you want to​ work with a​ large web design firm or​ a​ small freelance web company (or even single web developer). There is​ more security for​ the​ client when working with a​ larger firm. the​ skills they offer vary widely because their staff is​ so large, and​ they often have a​ very large portfolio. the​ caveat, though, is​ that large web companies often charge more money. the​ overhead costs for​ such companies is​ larger, so they will charge more. Additionally, larger web companies often come with more beauracracy. With so many developers, often communication is​ just not what it​ should be, leading to​ inconsistencies in​ the​ project due to​ miscommunication. Also, sometimes you will find that these companies pay a​ little too much attention to​ process rather than simply getting the​ job done.

Freelance web developers offer better value for​ the​ money, and​ because they are a​ single person, the​ communication flow between them and​ the​ client is​ usually much better (one-on-one). if​ there is​ a​ staff, usually the​ size is​ small, meaning communication will still be more tight-knit. This will lead to​ more consistent coding and​ coordination. Also, you know who is​ responsible for​ your project and​ there is​ more accountability. in​ larger firms, nobody is​ responsible in​ some cases. (or so they say). the​ downside of​ freelancing is​ that their skill set is​ their skill set, and​ if​ you need something that they don't know how to​ do, they must research it. Also, freelancers are limited by their size. if​ they already have a​ high workload, then their throughout is​ limited and​ it​ may force you to​ wait. So, depending on the​ size of​ your project, a​ large firm might guarantee the​ job gets done quickly.

Rates and​ Guidelines
Check out the​ rates of​ the​ web developer. Often, you will not find the​ rates directly posted on their website. This is​ usually because they like to​ do things by estimate, so simply contact them, give them a​ few specs, and​ go back and​ forth until you get a​ ballpark figure. When getting an​ estimate, make sure it​ is​ detailed and​ exact. Ask any questions that you have. if​ you think the​ price is​ too high, ask them about it. Don't be afraid to​ counter-offer. They can always refuse.

Check out the​ web developer's contract. Make sure the​ client is​ protected. PAy attention to​ guarantees of​ response time. You want to​ make sure your web developer is​ available for​ you. Also, look for​ their policy on project changes. Obviously, you cannot alter the​ specs of​ your project once an​ estimate is​ agreed upon without expecting additional fees. Ask them about this. Also, inspect the​ contract for​ warranty of​ work. Who will they handle bugs in​ the​ work they have done?

Talk With Them
Any web developer you consider should have a​ method of​ being reached by phone. Call them and​ gauge their personality. Make sure they are good people who you can talk with and​ bounce ideas off of. See if​ they treat you right or​ act like they barely have time for​ you. Good communication is​ very important to​ a​ successful project, and​ if​ you can't properly communicate to​ your developer, you should not hire him/her.

Evaluate your potential developers using the​ advice above and​ you will be more likely to​ have successfully completed project with minimal frustration.

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