Finding a good web designer who is going to both deliver on what your business needs and do it in a cost-effective future focused manner is one of the biggest challenges for early stage businesses and businesses in general.

With technology innovation moving forward at such a rapid rate it is time for almost all businesses to acknowledge that they are a technology company. You may not sell software or build applications, but you should have a website that offers value to your potential and existing companies.

Bearing this in mind, I have assembled my 5 top tips to finding yourself a great web designer:

1. Have a look into the designer’s previous work/portfolio.
This step is arguably the most importance though very closely followed by point two below. It is absolutely paramount that you have a thorough look through your prospective designer’s portfolios to get a feel for the quality of work they have completed. Equally as important, you will get a strong idea of the designer’s strengths and weaknesses and be able to analyse what implications that may have on your project.

2. Reach out to your shortlisted designers and have a high quality conversation about your own work as well as theirs.
In line with what we are talking about above, a good designer will openly and honestly communicate their strengths and weaknesses to you in order to facilitate a more informed decision as to whether they are suitable for your project.
A good designer should also ask what your current website is and offer to give you feedback free of charge.

3. Ensure your designer has strong experience in mobile first design.
Mobile/tablet web usage figures are continually rising and the days of sitting at your laptop browsing the internet are long gone. You need to ensure your designer represents the mobile first ethos in order to ensure your website/application is going to be relevant in the future. Without doing this you will end up in a place where you need to do a redesign within a couple of years. Now when I say mobile first ethos I am referring to the design of your website being built with the intention to operate optimally on mobile and tablet devices.

4. Don’t separate your designer from your developer.
It is incredibly important to ensure that the person or agency completing your project have both design and development skills. You need one person/team visualising and executing your project throughout this entire process to avoid a disjointed product becoming the end result.

5. Good web design/development costs money.
As entrepreneurs we are always looking to get the best result for the least cost possible and this is especially prevalent when it comes to websites. The notion that the cheap route is going to serve your business is one of the reasons there are so many poorly designed websites out there and it is important to understand that in order to separate yourself from this pool you need to be prepared to invest.

So there we have it, these are my top tips for finding a great web designer. I would love to know in the comments below, do you have any go to tips you use for hiring new team members? 

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