So you are looking for a web development company, but are not sure what traits and qualities you should seek? Let’s get this straight, there are no hard and fast rules to hire a web development company. You may select a company sitting in the top tier of the web development category, yet you may end up in a disappointing situation. The thing you can do as a small & medium size company is to set few basic rules before such hiring. What do you need? When do you need it? Why do you need it? How much can you spend on it?
This post gives you a fair understanding of a few things to take into consideration before hiring a web development company. So let’s dig into it.
Freelance vs. Web Development Company
Freelancers? Yeah, why not? Freelancers are cheap and (can be) very talented individuals. This may be a good idea if you get the right person. The only thing is that you may end up with an outrageously gifted individual (as the sample work suggested during your background research) with a laid back attitude. After the first sample, you may have a hard time to get him on chat to discuss a few things. Young, talented and freelance individuals are often stubborn to accept rejections and feedback for improvements. It is horrific for your urgent needs as a small and medium size company.
It is also interesting to mention a misconception among professionals that a small scale project with minimal needs should go to a freelancer and for a complex web development project, organizations should look for a web development company. It is so wrong on many levels. First of all, your web project is a brand identity of your company in the online community. Why would you risk making your first impression a bad one? For such reasons, it is recommended to seek a professional web development company instead of a freelancer.
So, it is settled that “why” a small and medium size company should hire a web development company. But what should I look for? Below are a few things we would recommend you to check before hiring a web development company.
A strong portfolio represents a company with good working ethics and professionalism. It is always a bit tricky to differentiate between a dummy and original portfolio. It is a good practice to do some background research by searching for live links of the portfolio online. Do an online search for the projects mentioned on a web development company’s portfolio. You can also check websites and social media platforms of each client on the portfolio list for authenticity. Do you remember the famous “powered by” line at the bottom of several websites?
As we have discussed earlier, small and medium sized companies are a bit tight on their development budget. Pricing is a decisive factor in getting a good, bad and ugly web site. It is advised that you should look for affordable, rather than cheap. There are a lot of web development companies making their name as the first choice for small and medium size companies due to their affordability.
Testimonials are another way to know more about the web development company. Once again, it is up to you how you can distinguish real testimonials out of the fake ones. You can always ask the company for permission to contact the person giving the testimonial and take 5 minutes of their time to verify their experience.
Business Practices & Better Business Bureau
The Better Business Bureau (BBB) rating is a strong measure to gauge a company’s reputation and business practices. A company rated as A+ is a good company with good reviews from its customers and less complaints. Such companies should be the first choice for your web development projects.
Hiring a web development company is not an easy job. This is due to the fact that the market is extremely saturated and there are a lot of options (similar to how you may get confused when shopping for cereal and are standing in the cereal aisle with 100 different choices in front of you). However, following a few simple steps, being thorough and diligent in your research will go a long way in finding the right fit for your project and fostering a long lasting relationship with a development partner that delivers results and lives up to your expectations.