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Our History and Philosophy on Web Design for Small & Medium Businesses
Updated August 31, 2016
Web design is one of the most important components for your business website. Some other components you may not have thought about include the ability to make changes and updates yourself, or have good customer service if your web design agency is going to do it for you.
Other components when hiring a web design agency for your website include web hosting, SEO, email marketing, push notification marketing, integration with social media and possible syndication from your website to social networks, and content marketing.
While all of these considerations may not apply to you, some of them may be things you didn't think about yet. You can read all about them and get pricing ideas on our website, under the services menu.
Thinking about web design for your website is probably the starting point for your website since it will be the first impression people have for your business when they visit your site.
Website design can come in many shapes, sizes, and colors which means this: designers can either start from scratch, or they can take designs they have already done and reuse them and modify them to meet your business needs. I always prefer the later with web design, since it gives a starting point for the design of your website and allows for a much faster and lower cost option for clients.
Web Design Pricing Considerations:
One of the most important things web design agencies can do for potential clients is to give a fair and accurate pricing model for their websites. As a customer, your first question is always going to be, how much is this going to cost me? We are happy to tell you, that answer is right on our Web Design Services page, spelled out for you so you won't have any surprises.
While web design can be many different things to many different people, the reason you will see sticker shock prices at most design agencies is due to them creating everything from scratch when it just isn't necessary.
While you may want to have completely different imagery, logos, and artwork than a previously done website that is the basis for your web design, it just isn't that hard to make those changes and get an affordable web design completed and online in a short period of time.
We used to focus mostly on our SEO services and software but found this gaping hole in the marketplace for an affordable web design company in the Hamilton, Ohio area. We could never find anyone who could do a website within a week for anything resembling a decent price.
There was this huge market of small businesses, with annual revenues of less than $1 million who needed something affordable, something reasonably quick, and did not want to spend $5,000 on a website. The more we saw this huge gap in the market, the more we started to develop our web design service to meet this need.
Our Latest Web Design Software & Findings
We have recently built our software platform so we can literally take our main software and produce a website that looks like our own, and then customize the layout, colors, and designs in less than a week and produce a very nice website. What used to take weeks now takes just hours with our new web design software created in house and built specifically for businesses needing a website done quickly and affordably.
We are finding that our clients love the straightforward website pricing and that there are no surprises later on. When trying to get websites done in the past before we started doing them ourselves, our biggest frustration would be getting one price, and then being charged for 10 additional things we had no idea what they even were.
My favorite, and my last straw in ever dealing with another "web design" company in Hamilton, was when we were charged for a WordPress theme license when they used a free theme. This was when I knew it was time to develop our own WordPress themes and plugins, and build them in such a way we can make quick and easy design changes without having to modify the theme files.
Our WordPress web design software is second to none and is our significant advantage over any other website designers in terms of time to complete and pricing.
A Track Record of Success in Web Design and Development
We have completed over 30 websites in the first 8 months of 2016 and that is only one small segment of our business. While we have many services to offer the marketplace, we started focusing on this problem small businesses had getting an affordable web designer who could actually get a project done in a few weeks or less with amazing web design features. The results have been amazing, as referrals have poured in and our web design business has boomed in 2016.
What This Means For Your Business Website
When you make a decision to hire someone to develop your new website, price and time to completion are probably important to you. Our track record of completing websites in less than a week (first draft, and then a few rounds of changes, additions, etc. can take a few more days) is absolutely second to none in the Hamilton, Ohio area.
This means you will get the best customer service experience you have ever had, as well as a higher quality web design service than you expect.
Beyond Web Design - Turning Your Website into a Lead Generation Machine
Something very important to know is that most web designers know very little about lead generation, conversions, or anything about marketing at all. It takes an extreme amount of knowledge to learn these skills. Web developers spend their life working on design, functionality, and all things web, and spend little time if any on the marketing side of the Internet.
One of your biggest considerations when putting up a new website will be the integration with building an email list as that will become one of your biggest assets. Building a push notification list is also a great asset to have. Of course, ranking in Google is also a big consideration, so proven SEO results is something you should be checking with your website design company of choice. Proven SEO rankings for past clients is something that should be shown to you, like we have on our SEO page.
Generating leads from search engines, as well as getting optins to your email newsletter and push notifications list are very important for the growth of your business. When you think about web design, it's important to also factor in lead generation to the picture.
Web Design Agency Size - Which is Right For You?
This will be another consideration you will be faced with. There are a lot of big budget, venture capital funded web development companies in the Hamilton area with great marketing and presentations.
What about the smaller agencies who work out of their home and keep their overhead low? Does that model work? That's a really good question and one I can answer since we currently follow that model.
Since we meet with web design clients at their site 99% of the time, we just figured having a big office to pay for was a massive waste of capital that we could allocate to software development instead. We all have high speed Internet in our homes, protected by firewalls. We collaborate with Dropbox and Basecamp for project management, and therefore don't waste time commuting to work, gossiping about sports or politics, but rather just get our work done without 2 hour lunches or being late to work because of traffic.
Speaking of Basecamp software, the staff at Basecamp is scattered throughout the US, Europe, Asia, and the Middle East, and they manage to run the best software on the planet, with the best technical support, and have the most market share of any project management company on the planet for project management software.
We try to model our business after their model and stay as efficient as possible as there is far more benefit to our web design and SEO clients that way than if we spent time in a fancy building looking important at the water cooler.
Yes, we are hated by our competition because we do a better job of building small business websites, in a much faster time period, and with much better lead generation principles in mind.
When you select a web design agency to work with, you will need to cut through all the fancy presentation and decide who you think will provide you with the best quality, the best pricing, and the best customer service experience, both during the design as well as after the project is complete.
What About After the Website is Complete? Changes, Additions, Etc.
This is a very important consideration to think about when hiring web design for your business website. Once the website is complete and online, and both parties agree the job is complete, what invariably happens is the client wants something changed at some point, or maybe a press release added to their website.
We hear stories all the time about companies not even being able to get hold of the person who did their website, as well as some of the large website agencies not getting back to them for a couple weeks about a change. Usually it's some tired excuse like you have a new account manager or something ridiculous like that.
When you do a website with us, we will make simple changes like that for you at no charge, even if you don't have any other services with us, within reason. So, what does within reason mean? It means if you send us a few things to update every once in a while, no problem.
If we are changing the complete design of the website, or making additions or changes every week, then we will need to enter into a post-website agreement to make changes for you, which will be a very affordable arrangement for you since won't be tied into any of the absurd contracts for monthly maintenance we have seen.
We have given you a lot to think about when looking for the right fit to your website. Considerations we talked about include:
- SEO Results
- Email Marketing
- Push Notification Marketing
- Overall Lead Generation
- Design Agency Size and Culture
- Post Completion Customer Service
While not all of these will apply to your website, some of them may be very important to you. We encourage you to think about what is most important, all the way down to least important with these.
We are available to discuss your web design needs at your convenience and wish you the best success online.