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How to Hire A Professional Web Developer
If you are starting a new business you have come to realize you are going to need a website. Perhaps you have considered building your own website, but maybe you read our article about why this may not be the best idea. So, you have decided to hire a professional web developer but you are not quite sure who to select. Well here are some tips to make sure you ensure the designer that you are hiring is a professional web developer worthy of your hard earned dollars.
Warning Signs That You Are Not Hiring A Professional Web Developer
They do not have a professional website. If their website looks like a personal site or they do not have a site at all, then that is a clear warning sign.
Their website has Adobe Flash or another dated web medium. Their own website is the one thing they don't need client approval on and so there should be no reason their website should not be up to date. If their site does not fit on your phone, doesn't work in all browsers, or contains dated features like Flash or Splash then run fast.
Their website is built on Wordpress. Since their one place to express themselves is their company website, and they choose to do that with a Wordpress template - then they are unlikely to be a professional web developer.
They have less than 5 websites in their portfolio. While the developer may only be putting some of their preferred works in their portfolio, they should have many more than five if they are actively working for clients on a professional basis.
Their price is too low. Every website has different needs and prices can vary widely. However, if you are being charged less than $700, then you can be assured that you are not hiring a professional web developer. The cost is often a good deal higher but anything less than $700 for a basic site is unlikely to give you a good end product.
They charge by the page. This is something that I have heard of from freelancers or beginning web designers. If they want to charge you by the page, then run.
Unable to answer some basic questions about standard web technologies. If you legitimately know more than the web developer that you are talking to, then it is unlikely they are a professional web developer.
They can only design you a website in Wordpress. There are scores of companies and freelancers popping up as Wordpress designers. While this may fit your current needs, it is not a professional web developer and may limit your potential in the near future.
They do not offer you a client agreement. It only takes a small amount of work for a web developer to find the needs of a client agreement. If your vendor does not have one that protects the both of you, then it is unlikely they are a professional web developer.
They offer a guarantee of a specific ranking on Google. No knowledgeable web developer will ever do this. If a designer you are considering offers such a thing, drop everything and run.
Based on the notes above you ought to be able to figure out how legitimate the developer/designer that you are considering is. Now that you have discovered that your developer is probably legitimate, there are additional things to consider when selecting your candidate. You may want to consider if the developer has built websites in your specific industry, or with similar website types. You will want to review their portfolio and make sure the websites that they build are both clean and intuitive. You will want to see some references of people who have worked with the developer to ensure the process has satisfied previous customers. Lastly, I would recommend that you know your own budget and make it clear to the vendor from the getgo. Perhaps offer three budget options (one lower than you want to spend, one at what you want to spend, and one slightly higher) to see what they can provide you in those price ranges. It is better to not waste any time if the web developer is out of your price range. And perhaps they will direct you to another developer who is in your price range.
If you have any more questions about hiring a professional web developer, feel free to comment below or email us your questions.
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Kim Young is Founder, CEO, and a developer at Foo - a web development company based in Wesley Chapel, Florida. She can also be found on Google+. With over 16 years of experience as a web developer, Kim is excited to share with you tidbits that she has picked up along the way. Kim prioritizes continuing education and out of box thinking in order to bring the most valuable solution to Fooweb's clients.