Free Web Design for Small Business

To be successful in the marketplace, you must have a web presence, and free web design for small business is a good option when you’re in the start up phase and are on a tight budget. Thousands of designers are all competing for business, and many of them offer free or very low cost website solutions for small businesses. It’s not really necessary to pay a higher cost for quality, custom web design as some business owners believe. However, small business SEO done properly is essential. You have to be assured that your website will be found and that you’ll get unlimited, targeted traffic.

A keyword search will bring up listings of thousands of companies offering free web design, which can be a good option for a small business, but you have to make sure to read the terms under which the free website is offered. When setting up a business website, you’ll purchase a domain name for your company. Many of the designers offering free web design provide a variety of templates from which to choose. You can have a professional, attractive site setup in a matter of minutes. Sometimes the condition for providing a free website is that you must use the hosting company that the designer is affiliated with.

For the business owner who isn’t familiar with all the aspects of web design, a free website with hosting included can be a good option. The features that are usually included are the creation of your website with a control panel that’s simple to use, even for a novice. Most designers are more familiar with SEO than the average web surfer, and know how to optimize your site so that it’s easily found in the search engines. This can result in higher rankings and more targeted traffic for your business. some of them will complete updates or revisions to your website without any additional charges. They’ll provide free email with several email accounts, but some of them provide unlimited email accounts.

Before choosing free web design for your small business, do some research into several companies offering free web design and hosting packages. Compare their features and choose the one that provides the best options for your needs. Many companies offering free design, have a testimonials page so you can read what customers have to say about their services. One good feature that’s offered by some free website providers is that you’ll be able to have a free trial for up to 30 days for their hosting services, with a small monthly fee for hosting after the trial period is over.

Where Can You Find A Freelance Web Design Job?

People today are finding their lives based more and more upon technology and the wonderful ways it has changed the world. Some of the jobs that have opened up have increased the awareness of others to the importance of using the internet in their daily lives. Freelance web designer jobs are one of those types of jobs. Not many people understand completely what freelance web designer jobs entail, nor how difficult they can be, but they realize the importance of them, considering the fact that freelance web designers are among the top job applicants that are searched for by large companies and corporations that are trying to update their company internet site, or to build one from scratch. Freelance web designer jobs are high paying, and while they may present challenges, this is definitely an in-demand field that will continue to grow into the future.

When a company decides to go online for the very first time, most usually freelance web designer jobs are the ones they are requiring to be filled. Few people have the qualifications for these kinds of jobs, but they are relatively simple to learn. Most of the larger companies prefer those working as independent contractors, as opposed to graphics designers that work within large companies. It seems to have become common knowledge that most people who work on a contract-by-contract basis are more apt to complete the desired job in the right amount of time, and to a desired specification. Some projects which are offered by large graphics and internet design companies have had bad results, or unhappy clients. This not only makes a bad name for the company that offered the freelance web designer jobs, but also for the industry as a whole.

If you are searching for profitable contract, or you currently have one, but you wish to take on another one, the easiest way of finding them is, of course, by using the net. There are a great many freelance web designer jobs that don’t even require you to enter the office. Find information about learning how to make bids on freelancing websites and you could earn a large paycheck from a single project. This could give you a chance on getting ahead in the work force, and finding the perfect project for you.

The main attraction that draws people into freelance web designer jobs is the offer of controlling their own work schedule, choosing their own hours, and by being, in essence, their own boss. Freelance web designer jobs offer most of these assets, and sometimes much more. The money you make working freelance web designer jobs goes directly to you, the boss/employee/freelance web designer of your own company. No more having to wait on a paycheck until the bosses have taken their cut out. However, the expenses of providing the necessary tools and equipment for your freelance web designer jobs fall solely on your shoulders as well. You must be sure to have your finances in order when working this type of job, to keep your “company” overhead to a minimum, and your profit to a maximum.

How to Determine Who to Hire To Be Your Next Ideal Web Developer

Critical Benefits and Drawbacks You Need to Know About Different Web Developer Types

I get asked to do website estimates a lot and sometimes it’s downright heartbreaking to hear about the struggles and challenges entrepreneurs and business owners face when trying to find the right web developer.

Too many times I hear about people who feel they were ripped off by their previous webmaster and are very reluctant to hire someone new for fear of the same thing happening again.

Some of these people decided they better do all the work themselves, struggled terribly trying to literally learn a whole new profession. They end up calling me out of sheer frustration that nothing is working and things are worse off than before.

One time I was having a conversation with someone on a completely unrelated topic and he asked me what I did, when I responded he blurted out, “I hate web developers.”

I cringed.

I’m sure this happens in every industry where there are people who are really great at what they do, some who do enough to get by, and some who only THINK they know what they’re doing!

The web development industry is no different.

If you are unhappy with your current web developer or are in the process of finding someone that you can trust and depend on to fulfill your web development needs, this article will provide some valuable tips that will help you find the perfect complement to your team.

The first thing to get clear on is exactly what kind of help you need.

When hiring a web developer, first get clear on what kind of help you need:

There are many different types of “web developers” out there and making the wrong choice can be very costly. So be sure you understand “who” you are hiring first and then your selection process will be much easier from there.

Here are four common types of web developers:

The WordPress VA (Virtual Assistant)

This person has figured out WordPress pretty well. They know how to install a WordPress theme (either free or purchased) and can make some modifications to that theme to help match your brand colours. They will have a good understanding of what plugins are available to match your needs as well.

Benefits: Usually hiring someone for this work charges less per hour than a fully qualified web developer. Putting together small-sized sites are their specialty.

Drawbacks: Often WordPress is all that they know and rarely do they know HTML or CSS to customize your website for any extra bells and whistles that you want to have.

Often purchased themes are so rigid that even moving an element from one part of the page to another is impossible to do with this type of limited knowledge.

When to hire them: You would want to hire a WordPress VA when you are not interested in a fully branded/customized website. You realize that any customization options are limited and you basically get what the theme preview shows aside from some colour, text and image changes.

You would also want to make this choice if you are already well versed in marketing strategy, copywriting, and branding and can simply tell your VA what needs to be done. Anticipate them having limited knowledge in some or all of these areas.

The Programmer

This person is what I lovingly call a “techno geek”. We have a few of these people on our team and we would not be able to be as successful as we are without them!

The Benefits: They know programming inside and out. They live, eat and sleep programming.

The Drawbacks: They can most definitely build you a fully functional website, no problem. But don’t expect it to look pretty! Branding, copywriting, design layout and marketing are rarely found in their list of skillsets.

You will probably need to hire someone else to help with those areas if you are not fully versed in them yourself.

When To Hire Them: You would want to hire a developer of this caliber if you have a complex website in mind that needs to be customized to fit your needs. Whether it’s an eCommerce engine, membership site or a database-driven tool, a fully trained and experienced programmer is your best bet.

The “All Round” developer

This again is a single person who has built enough websites to have a pretty good understanding of the bigger picture. They are what is called “a Generalist” where they have enough skills to be able to design and develop a decent website.

The Benefits: Having one person have knowledge in the different areas needed for web development is a big plus.

Usually this person has enough programming acumen to be able to handle most customizations and challenges that come up and will not need a plugin for every functionality (which will bog down your site’s performance).

They also are knowledgeable enough about branding and visual design that your site visitors will enjoy the experience of being there.

The Drawbacks: Even though they may appear to know a lot about web development, it’s impossible for one person to be really good at everything. It’s rare to find a really good designer also be a good developer (they do exist but they are a rare breed.) So you will still need to be, or have someone else on your team who is, well versed in online marketing and copywriting to help offset any weaknesses the person you hire has.

When To Hire Them: If you are lucky enough to find someone who has these skillsets AND is dependable, then you will have a great asset on your team. You will need to be aware of what their limitations are so that you can offset those areas with other people on your team.

The Web Development Agency

There several different types of web development agencies and for the sake of this article, I’ll focus on the kind that we are, a boutique web development and digital marketing agency. (If you’re looking for a big name agency that only multi-billion dollar corporations use, you wouldn’t have read this article to this point anyway!)

The Benefits: A boutique web development agency is not a one-man show. They are a team of professionals who can offer, as a collective group, all of the different areas of expertise that your business needs from a marketing perspective.

These areas generally include:

Brand Identity Design

Website Design and Layout

Copywriting

Online Marketing / Lead Generation

Video/Audio Editing

SEO

(Note some agencies only have 2 or 3 people on their team so be sure to ask questions to find out what everyone’s expertise is and if any skillset is lacking that you require.)

The other big benefit to using a web development agency is that they are very knowledgeable in your brand, your positioning and the message that you want convey to your ideal clients.

With every request you give them, they will already know what is needed and can discuss options with you to create something for you that is a perfect fit for your needs.

This avoids you from having to know what is needed yourself and also have to ensure other people on your team remain consistent with your brand message and design so you can focus more on what you do best.

The Drawbacks: Depending on who you find, the price point might be outside of your budget. Do your research: ask for and talk to referrals to help you decide if they will deliver what they promise. If they have a good reputation for being on time and on budget, then the extra costs will balance out in the long run.

When to hire them: Hiring a boutique web development agency can be one of the best things you can do as a new business. Doing this will assure that your new venture will get going on the right foot right off the bat. You will save a lot of time and money in the long run if you make this initial business investment.

If you already have an existing business and website but area ready to step up to the next level, this is the time to bring in an agency that can help you with not only the “doing” but also the strategizing to ensure you get to where you want to be without wasting a lot of time, money and energy.

You will also want to look for an agency when you want someone on your team for ongoing, consistent support. After your website is built, you will want someone you can contact at any time for website updates, creating new campaigns, doing SEO work etc.

My final piece of advice is to be sure you do your research on who you approach. You want to find someone with experience and skill who will partner with you to help you build your business.

Unless this is what you’re looking for, you want to avoid programmers and developers who only do exactly what you tell them. Having someone who can offer ideas and suggestions and be a part of your team to be a valuable resource when needed may be more ideal for you.

References are very important in this industry: Always ask to talk to their clients to see what their experience was working with the developer.

Be aware of those that claim to be developers when in reality, all they learned was how to use a “do it yourself” software like WIX or Weebly.

The quality of your website – both in design and in how it is coded – is very important on many levels. Ensure the person you hire understands how to design and build a quality product for you. Otherwise, you will most likely be faced with going through the whole process again in a short period of time once you realize your site is doing you more harm than good by turning off your potential clients instead of attracting them!