[dropcap background=”” color=”” circle=”0″ size=”3″]W[/dropcap]hen a business, brand, or cause decides to use the Internet to begin growing their sales, increase awareness, or promote an idea, they usually have two options. First, they can do it themselves and take on the myriad of things that require a solid web presence. Second, they can seek out someone who is knowledgable in website design/development, social media, or technology to help meet their needs. But, how do you make sure that you get the most out of your designer? In this post, I’ll share with you some ways that you can ensure that you get everything (and more).
While it’s not impossible to do everything you want to for your business or organization, it’s often best to enlist the services of a professional. They have the knowledge and experience necessary to get your website, social media, or email marketing program up and running and done well. Besides, you should be working on your business, what you do best! Let someone else wrangle the pixels and other stuff for you!
Make Your Web Designer Sign A Contract
The online communications world is one where creativity, and creatives, reign supreme. Creatives are often more interested in providing a great design and functionality than they are great business people. That’s not always the case, but to be on the safe side ask that the two of you negotiate and sign a contract. I’m not an attorney, so specifics are up to you and I’m not able to provide legal help.
A contract will state what the work you are paying him/her to provide, various terms of payment, the amount of payment, and other necessary information. The contract will help protect both you and your web designer from each other if something goes wrong.
Provide Your Assets As Quickly As Possible
From your web designer’s perspective, he or she has great plans in store for your brand or business. He or she may have sketched and outlined your design, scanned in prototypes, and has probably sat down to type by hand thousands of lines of code to bring your design to reality. All this work though, is for naught, if he or she doesn’t have your assets to put the finishing touches on those designs.
Assets include website copy, photographs, videos, email addresses, logos, artwork, etc. The easiest way to make delivery seamless is to ask your designer to sign up for a cloud based service, like Dropbox, Google drive, or some other service. If necessary, create a secured file and share via FTP (File Transfer Protocol).
Over Communicate With Your Designer
Many times in the client/consultant relationship problems arise because there isn’t enough communication between both parties. So, the way to get the most out of your client/designer relationship is to be sure that you communicate sufficiently with your designer. Do not be overbearing, but ask them if you can get them anything else to help them with the project. Create systems to follow up with requests, status of the work, information needed, anything.
In this age, it’s never been easier to stay connected. Phone, text messages, Facebook Messenger, etc., all make it very easy to keep in touch. You can even use online tools like Slack, Nozbe, Trello, etc to keep in sync with each other. Find what works for you and insist that your designer use the same tool.
Be Patient With Your Designer
It’s every designer’s goal to provide their clients with the best in service, design, and development. Most creatives, if not all, thrive on doing a great job for their client. But, sometimes a client can be over bearing, demanding, and micro-managing. Don’t be that client. Seek to be patient with them over the course of the project. Obviously, whatever milestones or deadlines there are, keep those enforced, but be flexible. Understand that sometimes the things you expect from your designer will take time to produce and may take more time than expected.
Your relationship with your web designer can be a great thing and mutually beneficial for both, if you get a contract, over communicate with your designer, provide your assets as quickly as you can, and be patient with them as they serve you.
So, if you’ve ever worked with a web designer, what has been some of the things you’ve done to start off on the right foot and stay that way? Leave a comment below!