The year was 1980. There was a grand party at the headquarters of Crest toothpaste. The COO suggested that due to knowledge-intensive environment, a new strategy must be devised. After a thorough brainstorming session, it was concluded that introducing new variations of the toothpaste would do good for the company. The suggestion was well-received within the organization and within a month 52 varieties of Crest toothpaste hit the shelves of the major supermarkets.
Unfortunately, when Crest was working on its 52 variants, Colgate launched ‘Colgate Total.’ Just a single toothpaste that can clean the teeth and brighten your smile.
Now, whenever the customer visits a store, they had two choices. Either they can choose from one Colgate, or they can choose from 52 variants of Crest.
Let’s imagine the internal dialogue of the customer:
‘There are so many variations of Crest.
Wow! They care so much. Wait, what? They have 52 variations? Are you kidding me?
I don’t have the time to go through a ton of options; I just need one toothpaste that will do the job.
Hmmm… Colgate seems to be okay for me.’
When presented with many choices, human beings tend to get confused.
If you own a business or are planning to start one, you must first have a website. Now, you can either use internal resources or find someone who’s in the business of developing websites. There are more than 60,000 website development agencies out there in the U.S. And this ginormous number makes it a near-impossible task to choose right one.
But why worry when you’ve got us?
Allow us to take this burden off your shoulders.
Here are some vital tips which you must consider before handling your website development job to a new agency.
First, take a look at your resources
Unless you’ve got a fortune stashed somewhere, you must look at the available resources in your firm.
Developing a ecommerce website demands serious skills.
Design sense, what type of content needs to go on the website, UI/UX design and development, testing, quality control, deciding on which eCommerce software platform to use, search engine optimization and so on.
If you or your team have the aforementioned non-exhaustive list of skills then that would help you get your website launched quickly and also reduce burden on your company’s wallet.
However, most of new and even established eCommerce stores often don’t have the required resources or time to develop their website. And that’s when getting a professional website developer on the board becomes imperative for a successful website launch.
Now, that you’re all set, here are the factors that you must consider before hiring a professional website development agency for your eCommerce store.
Ask for the Portfolio
If there’s no harm in asking for extra ketchup at McDonald’s, and no shame in asking for an extra pair of napkins at your favorite restaurant, then why do people feel shy in asking for a portfolio?
A website is the backbone of your company where your customers will come to purchase your products. The first impression of your customer in terms of UX and UI
Do you want to leave everything in the hands of a website agency with no or confusing portfolio? I don’t think so.
Ask them for their ongoing and finished ecommerce website projects. Also, learn as much as you can regarding their work from their previous customers.
Doing a background check along with evaluating the developers’ portfolio will help you ascertain whether they are capable enough to work on your website and make it successful.
Meeting the Deadlines
This indicator can easily be judged in the first few meetings with the client. Check the portfolio and gauge the amount of time that the vendor invests on each project.
Ask about the challenges, the contingency plans that the web development company has in place in case of emergency. If the company is experienced, they will be able to provide you with a clear-cut plan.
Based on their expertise, the vendor will be able to inform you how much time each phase will take and what will the next course of action if the deadline is not met. You can also mutually discuss the how the vendor will be compensating you in case deadlines are missed.
Response Time of the Agency
It is impossible to judge how efficient the developer is from the first meeting. However, after a few presales meetings you can have a very clear picture about what levels of commitment and speed of delivery is the vendor going to demonstrate after you’ve hired them.
If the representatives of the agency are not addressing your request for more information quickly and they present unjustifiable reasons for the delay then get ready for not only missed deadlines but also unfulfilled commitments.
Cues such as the ones mentioned above are telltale signs that the person or the company you’re about to hire might not come up with the goods. Therefore, pay close attention to the way the developer deals with you in the first few interactions.
Explore the Web & Ask Around
The digital world has become one big family always in touch with each other courtesy of advancements in the telecom sector.
To find the perfect developer what you can do is ask your contacts if they can refer anyone they might know. I have found this as the best way to find any vendor as it saves time on researching for potential vendors.
Another place you can find good developers is forums like reddit or Quora. A lot of new web development companies and their customers are scouring these platforms to find each other.
If you wish to gain access to bigger players you can always visit famous digital agency marketplaces such as Upcity and Clutch.
What these platforms offer is a comprehensive list of high-performance agencies and website developers based on a number of factors. Here you’ll be able to read reviews and stars given by their customers.
If the digital community is speaking good about the brand, it means that the digital agency is doing something right, but if there are negative reviews, discuss those reviews with the digital agency and see what they have to say about it. Let them clarify what went wrong and what they did to fix the situation.
Look for an all-in-one package
Usually, digital marketing agencies come with all-in-ones package. Unless you have some people are working from your brand on the project, in that case you might get some relief in your budget.
It is wise to find an agency that comprises of a team of that would make sure not only the website functioning perfectly but also attracting scores of customers as well.
A diverse team helps you brainstorm ideas and create something out of the ordinary. More heads mean more innovation. When you get all the information services in one place, it will be easier for you to stay updated with the progress that the agency is doing.
To wrap it all up
Starting a business is a daunting task. And to keep it running smoothly and generate more business is even harder. That’s why if the first step, that is getting a working website, is not taken perfectly then the financial goals you wish to achieve will never see the light of the day.
If your eStore doesn’t provide the best online shopping experience even if you have what they want in your inventory, chances of your customers jumping in someone else’s cart are very high.
That’s why it is necessary to keep these tips in mind before reaching out to a professional web design agency for a shot at making it big in the ecommerce market.