So you've been thinking of bringing your company online. Great! Now you have a perfect vision of how your website will look. You tried doing it by yourself, but surprise (not really)! It's not great. The idea of hiring a freelance website designer crossed your mind.
But, do you need one?
Maybe you don't need an eye-candy web design. After all, you have a great product. Your customers will naturally find you. Wrong.
Building a good web design is as important as your website's contents or the product you sell. Many consumers are introduced to a brand online.
These customers will trust a brand based on how their website looks. Websites that appear sketchy will have a lower customer trust than a website that looks appealing. It's a proven fact that a good web design attracts more customers.
It should also translate to your website's interface when you sell a great product or service. But what if you are not proficient in website design? Is hiring a freelance website designer a good option?
We will help you explore the benefits of hiring a freelancer to design your website than doing it by yourself. Moreover, we will also help you select the perfect designer for your design needs and many more. Read on to learn more!
Hiring a Freelance Website Designer vs. DIY
As a startup, you may find that your resources are limited initially. This restriction in resources urges startup owners to DIY their websites. Thanks to modern tech, lives are more straightforward.
There are a lot of easy-to-use design tools available. Some of these tools don't require complicated technical skills before using them.
Both options have their pros and cons. We made a list below to help you decide whether to hire a professional or do it yourself. Make sure to evaluate each option before making a decision.
What If I DIY?
Why DIY#1: Beginner Friendly Tools
Unlike before, more design companies are making beginner-friendly tools. This innovation helped many people who are not skilled in web design make their web layouts from scratch.
WordPress and Squarespace are some of the well-known website building tools. These tools are effortless to use for someone with little web design skills. In addition, they also offer a variety of helpful features that are easy to learn.
However, these sites do not provide more flexibility than building a website. For instance, you won't have as much control over the design and layout. In most cases, these tools have pre-programmed website layouts with limited customizations.
Why DIY#2: More Creative Control
Hiring a freelance website designer is ideal if you want to have a picture-perfect web layout. But, doing it yourself is would suit you better if you like to play with the designs. Moreover, DIY will help you improve your web design skills if you have the basic knowledge.
On the other hand, doing it this way can be time-consuming. You will have to spend hours or even days to complete a basic web design. Even with the help of easy-to-use tools, you will have to spend dragging hours to finish your layout.
Why DIY#3: Faster Turnaround Time
Depending on the simplicity of a design, creating your own web layout can be faster than working with a designer. If you are making a web design without too much functionality, you can probably do good yourself.
However, if you only have limited knowledge of website creation, then it would be best to hire a professional. Moreover, working on a complicated website design might take long hours.
Why DIY#4: Lower Costs
DIY might be your best option if you have a budget constraint. Hiring an expert freelance website designer means you need to have a lot of money. These talented individuals will lend you their skills, and in turn, you will have to pay for their talent and time.
However, there is a vast market pool for website designers. There are a lot of freelance website designers looking for entry-level opportunities. Moreover, websites like designmatch.io help startup owners like you find a website designer that fits your needs and budget.
What If I Hire A Freelance Website Designer?
Why Hire Freelance Website Designer#1: Expert Designs and More Features
Websites built using DIY tools may not be as flexible in terms of design. These websites don't allow you to have complete control over certain elements. However, with a designer, you will meet your design goals.
Your freelance website designer can help you achieve the vision you have for your web. For example, if you have definite ideas about how an element should look. Moreover, they can help improve your web design functionality.
Why Hire Freelance Website Designer#2: More Design Customization
Sites like WordPress and Wix make it easy to update your content since they come with built-in platforms. However, you will need to deliver more effort on these sites and spend long hours to get the design vision you have out of your head.
Hiring a freelance designer can save you time and effort. As a startup owner, you have other tasks you need to handle. When you hire a web designer, you can take the burden of designing your website off your list.
Why Hire Freelance Website Designer#3: Tool Expertise
With DIY tools such as Squarespace and Wix, you can freely choose the layout of your site. You can also customize where you want the different elements are located. However, if you build a custom website yourself, it may not look the same way you have in your head.
When you employ a freelance web designer, you hire someone with experience and expertise. Moreover, because they are highly skilled, they can help bring to life the vision you have in your head.
Why Hire Freelance Website Designer#4: High-quality Output
Sites like Squarespace make sites with professional-quality designs. These tools are also easily accessible to people who do not have much experience in web design. On the other hand, since custom sites are coded from scratch, they offer more freedom and creativity when designing.
In case you are feeling confused and exhausted by the design process. Then hiring a web designer can be an excellent choice. You will need to identify how much work you want your designer to do. Also, you have to be specific about what kind of help they should provide for you.
Do not expect them to manage all aspects of website designing, though! It can be exhausting, even for them to handle all the web designing tasks, especially if they are starting from scratch. A good designer can also provide you with the tools needed, and they can even teach you how to use them.
DIY tools may not meet your specific needs or create websites with custom features designers can give. On the other hand, employing a designer can be expensive but likely result in a better-looking website.
What Is A Freelance Website Designer?
A website designer is someone who creates the look and feel of a website. They are responsible for creating the overall visual needs of your website or online store. Web designers mainly focus on color schemes, fonts, images, page layouts, or templates (like on WordPress).
These creative individuals can also help you with web animations, videos, shapes/icons that you will be using throughout your site. This means that they can use their creativity to make your site stand out from others in your industry. Having a good website design has positive effects on customer engagement and trust.
Most website designers have a background in graphic or UX design. They may also have some experience with programming. This skill can be helpful if they design the site as your company's primary marketing platform.
What Should You Consider When Designing A Website?
When designing a website, you should consider your budget. Moreover, it would help to determine how much functionality you want your web design to have. It would be best to determine the marketing purpose of your website design.
As a consumer and founder, you should also ask yourself what features are most important to your business. Here are some other things you must consider when deciding on a web design.
It would be best to know how much you are willing to spend on web design. This can be your crucial deciding factor if you can afford the help of a freelance website designer.
If money is tight, designing parts of the site using free tools like Squarespace might be enough for some companies. You can also negotiate with a freelance website designer. Some web designers can partially help you build your website design with a limited budget.
When designing a website, you should consider what the site will look like and how it will work. For example, your business needs to have an online store or integrate with social media. Then having these features need to be integrated into the design. In this case, they have to work correctly and efficiently to access customers.
Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.
– Steve Jobs
Here, a good rule to follow is to listen to what your customer wants. You or your web designer can also research what customers are looking for in your website.
When designing a website, you should consider what design feels right for your business. A company that sells high-end furniture may want to have an elegant, simple and classy feel. In contrast, a tech startup might use bold colors or graphics with lots of movement to show its innovative edge.
It's essential to convey what services you offer in the customer's eyes. A proficient web designer can help you create a web design that will impact your customers.
It would be best to consider how you would use your site for marketing purposes. For example, if people are mostly going to use your website on their mobile phone, it should look good and function well in that format.
Other than this, it would be best to keep in mind that your website design should align with your company's branding.
5. Feature Priorities
Another critical factor when designing a website is features. It would help if you considered what features are most important to your business. This may change depending on the time of the year or other market factors.
For example, a Christmas sale may add the feature of an online store to your site temporarily. On the other hand, having a contact form is helpful if you're looking for more permanent parts. This is crucial since your customer would like to have an easy way to reach you.
Finally, it would be best to look at your website's scalability. It's important to consider how your website design can accommodate quick changes. For example, if your company keeps growing, your site's layout may have to change.
If you decide to hire a web designer, ask them what tools they use. In addition, you should ensure that you have a system in place to make small changes quickly and within budget once they have completed the project.
What Makes A Freelance Website Designer An Ideal Candidate?
There are different types of website designers out there. Selecting the perfect candidate all boils down to your needs. Suppose you are on a budget and only need the bare essentials. Then you might want to consider hiring someone who is self-taught or has taken some courses in web design (such as an online course through Udemy).
This can help save you money. Furthermore, a beginner may not provide all of the services that other website designers offer. On the other hand, if you are looking for something more advanced. Then consider hiring someone who has a degree in graphic design or web development.
They will know the ins and outs of coding, and this knowledge can be beneficial when you want to make updates in the future. It is also helpful to have some experience in business, marketing, or digital strategy.
Interview Questions You Should Ask To Hire The Best Freelance Website Designer
Before hiring a web designer for your project, getting some information about them is crucial. You must be aware of their web design experience. Furthermore, it would help to ask them some questions about their other qualifications and how they work with clients.
Here are a few essential questions to help you get started:
Freelance Website Designer Interview Question #1: What is your experience designing websites?
It's vital that you set an expectation based on your web designer's experience. In addition, you can't expect them to build a highly-functional website design if they have little to no experience.
Moreover, you can know your web designer's work ethic when you ask this question. Here are a few interview question ideas you can ask your candidate.
- How many projects like mine have you completed before?
- What specific tools or programs do you use for this design project?
- Will I be able to make changes myself?
- How often do you make updates to your site designs?
- What types of sites have you designed before and for what purpose (to sell products, inform, etc.)?
Freelance Website Designer Interview Question #2: Are there any limitations on this project that I should know about now or in the future? (i.e., budget)
You should discuss your budget with your freelance website designer. This can help them adjust their service accordingly. It's best to discuss this with your designer before contract signing to help prevent future disputes.
In addition, you and your web designer should have design compatibility. This is why matching up with a designer is crucial for every design work. Here are some interview question ideas that can help you identify these limitations.
- Do my website plans fit with your creative vision and expertise?
- Can you describe your design style and the overall look I can expect from this project?
Freelance Website Designer Interview Question #3: What should my website include/look like?
It's essential to specify what features and designs you want for your site. For example, in case you are looking for a simple one-page design. Then it would help if you asked your designer how they would work within those parameters.
Otherwise, if you're looking for a more complex website with many different features, then be sure to mention them as well. Listed below are some sample questions you can use.
- How do you visualize my one-page idea for a website?
- Do you have experience working with a complicated website layout?
Freelance Website Designer Interview Question #4: What are the overall goals of my site?
Goal setting is an essential first step when designing a website. You should be able to communicate your goals to your web designer. In fact, by doing these, they will have a clear idea of how they can exactly help you with your design.
Consequently, if your designer can see your goals from your perspective, everything will be seamless.
- What do I hope people will achieve by visiting it?
- How often will I update and change content on the site (i.e., weekly, monthly)?
- What types of business will I be working with on the site (i.e., e-commerce, digital downloads, etc.)?
Freelance Website Designer Interview Question #5: How much will this cost/how do you charge for your work?
A freelance website designer's rate will depend on your assigned project. They may charge you more with tasks that require more work. On the other hand, if you are looking for a long-term designer. Then it would be best if you were willing to pay them per hour of work.
- How long does it usually take to accomplish a similar project, and how many stages are there between each step?
- Do we have to sign any contracts or agreements?
- How will you work with me throughout the process, and what steps do we have to go through at different stages of development?
It's worth noting that these are just some suggestions that can be helpful when getting started. There are many other items worth discussing, so don't limit yourself!
Designing a website for your business can be daunting. Your customers and other browsers must have a great first experience with your brand. After all, the first impression lasts.
But now, you know more about the basic process of web design. In addition, you also know what to consider when hiring a website designer. This will provide you leverage when you are ready to launch your business.
If you'd like further guidance, reach out to Design Match, and we'll help you find your perfect design match!