A good WordPress development company goes above and beyond what the client needs. They basically do the heavy lifting of the technical stuff so that you do not have to.
But, before spending your money there are a few things that you need to consider first; like is this company reliable? How are their social media interactions? etc., So we will talk about those factors and more in this post.
Table of Contents
- Offers All that you Need
- Specializes in important areas
- Works Creatively
- What do others have to say?
- Social Proof
- How are they on the phone or email?
- Do they offer ongoing support?
- Are they all-round skilled in using different CMS platforms?
- What are their prices like?
- Final Thoughts
1. Offers all that you need.
Most website owners need a technically skilled person to build or manage their website but also someone who has all the right tools/plugins etc. For example: at Sitepact, not only do we build websites, but based on our experience we realize that most websites need additional resources to function properly, and so, we make sure to include up to $2,000 worth of plugins for any of our maintenance plans because we know how important this is to the customer. A good web development company will have the foresight to consider these things.
Other important Considerations:
Hosting on their servers – Some website owners want their websites to be hosted on the developer’s servers and this can reduce the cost for purchasing stand-alone hosting.
Staging – This is where the developer tests development changes before deploying them on the live servers.
2. Specializes in important areas.
Speed – A speedy website is a user-friendly website. Most persons will click off your website if it doesn’t load within three seconds. So, when choosing a good company, check to see their track records for speed improvements. Also, pay close attention to what host they recommend, because this is the most important factor in your website speed.
Make sure they are not just sending you to a company so that they can make affiliate profits.
Here are some other important factors to consider:
Security – This is the most important factor to look at because it protects your investment. When choosing a web development company, you need to check what security measures they have in place to ensure that you are being monitored and your website is properly “hardened”.
How does the website development company handle bugs? – Faulty codes, faulty plugins, etc. may need to be cleaned up or rewritten and your website development company may have to ensure it is done properly.
Do they offer SSL certificates? – Coming from your host, this may be an additional cost for several website owners, but it can be avoided. If you have not bought it, the website development company may need to provide it for you or go ahead and set it up for you.
This is a real issue and so we have made sure that we included this in our Essential plus and Partner site care plans.
What do they do if you are hacked? – If you are not protected initially and your security is breached, you will need to recover your website. Fortunately, there are tools and ways we provide that can stop this from happening, and if it does, it can be shut down immediately and prevented from happening again.
All these are factors to take into consideration because a safe site is a useful site especially if you are handling people’s money.
Some other important factors to look for are:
- Backup – This can save your site in case of a new update or you may need to migrate your website on short notice.
- Broken link fixes – Whether it is a redirect or an amendment that needs to be made to a destination URL
- Malware cleanups – This may require some deep coding into your website files. No problem for us here at Sitepact! 😀
Usability – How user-friendly are their websites? Take a look at their portfolios to check this one out. This is a factor that most developers may overlook but if you make a pretty website that isn’t user-friendly (get the user from point A-B without much resistance) then it’s just a pretty mess. For good web development companies, usability is primary, and not too far behind is website design.
SEO – Great website development companies often expand their services to help their clients get organic exposure on the web.
3. Works creatively
Understandably, there will be constraints at times when creating a website because that’s just life; whether it is time difference or language barriers, a good website development will have systems in place to tackle these challenges.
Important creative factors to consider are:
Time constraints – A good web development company will have a system in place that reduces the overall time it takes to complete a website once the client is sure. So, if you have a short deadline then you should still be able to get the job done, for some, it might cost you a little more though so be willing to pay for that.
Here is a good picture that displays what will typically happen if you have time, budget or quality demands.
Theme and color constraints – This is where the developers have to be designers as well. Web development and web design are two different things and they can be separated but a good web development company merges the two elements seamlessly.
Cloning a preconceived design – Clients who know exactly what they want are gems to be treasured. That is, however, one piece of the puzzle and the next piece is the ability of the developer to bring it to fruition. We have had clients who wanted to clone popular eCommerce websites to match likeness and feel. This is actually very exciting and clients like those who are specific in what they want are very well met with satisfaction.
Why is it said that communication is the key to good relationships? Well, that’s because it is. And this plays a role in customer service. A good web development company will communicate in a pleasant way that does not offend the client and leaves no door open that should be shut. Likewise, they will not shut doors that should be open.
Handling disputes and customer frustration, anxiety, anger, and other issues is a key element in creating lasting relationships. Oftentimes, you may be dealing with a whole lot of factors that you pass on to others and it is their response that can either escalate the matter or soothe the situation.
We understand that not every unpleasant response is the customer’s fault and they may be dealing with issues that they may or may not even be aware of.
5. What do others have to say?
If you view the company’s portfolio you should get an idea of what past clients have to say. Some companies actually buy fake reviews but that’s another subject for another time.
Of course, some web development companies will choose the best clients to display and that is understandable. For us, we primarily collect reviews and leave links to the actual sites that we have worked on, which shows you unbiased reviews of the jobs we have done, so that is a good way to track the actual responses.
6. Social proof
This goes hand in hand with client reviews. Social proof is however less likely to be handpicked by the company to display. You can expect raw, honest feedback from persons on social media, which will help you to understand what it is like working with this company.
On the other hand, competitors may hire persons to leave negative comments and reviews on social media pages. In this case, you may have to do some deeper digging to find out if what they are saying is true.
This also shows you how they respond to comments whether good or bad and you will see if you will be valued as a customer or treated otherwise.
7. How are they on the phone or email?
You should try to contact them by email before spending your money with them so that you can see how they are structured with response time and little things like how they communicate through their emails. I also recommend you request a meeting and see how good the communication is. You will be able to tell more about them by how they respond to your conversations.
This is where you can have live interactions with a human which could give you a better sense of judgment.
For some web development companies, they will actually call you once you request a callback; all you have to do is pick an available date and time and leave your number along with your inquiry. This is something that we actually practice here at Sitepact; you can request a callback anytime by clicking this link.
8. Do they offer ongoing support?
This is crucial, once a website is developed many clients think the development is completed, but it is not. When a site is completed, if the client who will now be the user administrator is not savvy with the CMS, then the developer should provide documents, and tutorials in order to show exactly how you handle the website, from an administrative end, once the control is passed on.
Some clients actually save time by hiring a website maintenance company to manage the technical aspects of their site. This takes care of the guesswork and the learning curve that comes with constantly learning how the CMS works and dealing with improvements.
Some important factors to consider are:
Do they provide training material for their clients? – Some clients may have a team that would need to be educated on how to access administrator portals, or portals with specific roles such as editors, students, etc. A good web development company should be able to provide that material if requested by the client.
Do they offer maintenance plans? – Sometimes you may want to update the website down the road, or constantly change your details depending on your industry. A good web development company will offer solutions to this issue. For example: at Sitepact, we ensure that we provide unlimited edits with our Essential Plus and Partner plans so that you are not left in the dust.
9. Are they all-round skilled using different CMS platforms?
WordPress is the most popular and some companies choose to niche down to WordPress websites only and that is good, however, what separates the best from the rest of web development companies is:
1. They do custom coding for their websites, not just templates and plugins all the time (they have in-depth, transferable knowledge)
2. They are able to work with other CMS platforms if necessary – this requires the developers to have in-depth knowledge and be able to integrate across platforms or work with any platform they are given. This is necessary even if they niche down.
For example, We work with WordPress primarily but also have a wide experience with other platforms such as Magento, Joomla, Wix, and other CMS platforms.
10. What are the prices like?
I left this last because even though it is important, it is often not the most important factor. Affordable doesn’t always mean cheap but it does mean you are getting value for your money. It’s a sweet spot with the right amount of quality for an acceptable price. Affordability is more based on experience and if you can do what you say you will.
A cheap solution may be good but will not be able to provide most of the features mentioned above, and this is typical for developers just starting out.
Once a developer’s skill increases and they are able to provide more value to the customer, then their prices normally increase. But it shouldn’t be too high.
For example. We have over 5 years of experience building and maintaining websites and our portfolio, prices, and plans reflect that. Our customers are often satisfied and are willing to work with us over and over again.
View our pricing plans here.
If you have had any bad experiences with web development companies, then it is most likely that one or a few of the points mentioned above were missing. It is wise to check the company’s reputation, skill, and ability to communicate. If these three primary areas are off, then nothing justifies their prices.
If you want to check out our prices and plans visit this link.
Here is a link to our portfolio for your viewing.
Finally, talk to us if you have any questions by clicking this link or sending a message through the chat.
Share your experience below. Which company would you not recommend, based on the criteria above?