So you have decided you need a website. What next?
Before you contact some web site designers to obtain a quote, you will save your self time, money and trouble by first sitting yourself down and thinking in what you truly want. The more you can “nail down” your demands, the more likely you are to get a better price, and not be surprised by getting a bill for extras at the end of the undertaking.
First, think about what you want from your website:
Do you want to sell products online, using a shopping cart software and some system of accepting payments?
Would you like your site to be a “static” online pamphlet, showcasing your products or services?
Do you want your site to produce leads & enquiries for you to follow up directly?
Can be your site primarily directed at providing information for existing customers?
Can be your site likely to be described as a useable, interactive service e.g. searchable property database?
Now consider how many pages you will need. Web site designers will use this as an important factor when quoting you; if you initially ask for too few, you may get a bill for extras. Ask for too many and you could be paying a lot more than you need to.
Take into account the titles of the pages you need (as they can be found in the site navigation) As a minimum, you will likely need “Home”, “About Us” and “Contact Us”.
Now give some consideration to the design of the website. Do you have a colour scheme in mind? Would you want some Flash animation? What sort of imagery do you need used? TO get some good a few ideas, browse the Net and put in writing any websites you find that you such as the look of, and supply the URL to web site designers. This will help them get a notion of what you like.
It’s also advisable to consider which technical problems are important for your requirements.
Does you site need to be:
* Quick Loading? If your target market are house users, a substantial proportion may still be on slower dial up internet connections.
* Graphically Intensive? Perhaps you need to appeal to corporate users, by employing a powerful, professional design.
* Optimised for a particular screen resolution? Can you need the site to look best on 1024 x 768 resolution displays, or possibly your target market is more likely to have old PC’s with screen settings as for instance|for example|including|for instance|like”>such
as for instance 800×600. * Updated yourself? If you routinely need to alter the text/images of your site, you may need to ask for a quotation for a Content Management System (CMS). Ask fort his to be defined as an optional cost, to help you judge when it is cost effective for you personally. Alternatively, you could purchase web editing applications (such as Macromedia Contribute) though you will have to make your web designer aware that this is exactly what you will be doing.
* Aimed at particular customers? Perhaps your target market are printers or music business professionals, who have a tendency to use Apple Mac computers. In that case, make your web designer aware of it — many designers usually do not pay much attention to checking web sites run correctly on Macs.
By taking a very little time to consider the requirements of your website, you will assist your web designer profoundly, obtaining the site you need at a affordable cost.
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