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Web Design and Development
Questions you should ask before
hiring a developer.
Have you designed any successful sites? Ask to see it and the
sites statistics. References: Ask for a phone number, ask if the
customer is satisfied.
How much will cost? Ask for an estimate. Do you provide
maintenance? How much does it cost? Do you do database work?
After your site becomes successful, sooner or later your company
will need remote users to update, query, and maintain records
via the Internet. If the designer cannot do custom internet
database integration, does he work with someone who can?
What software will I have to
purchase? Will you build and maintain the site for a monthly
fee? In most cases this will be the best option for the company
and designer. The designer guarantees "up to" certain number of
hours per month working on the site (large company sites can
take months to complete). This benefits both the company and the
designer. The terms of the contract should be agreed upon and on
paper. Don't be surprised if the designer stipulates he can't be
fired if he achieves clearly defined goals and objects.
Normally, the designer will put in more hours than guaranteed in
first few months to complete the site and then maintain it “up
to” the guaranteed hours. Make sure you settle on a price for
any time in excess.
Will you include support to my staff?
Most designers have a vast knowledge of computers, networking,
and software applications. Will he include a certain number of
hours each month to help employees with hardware and software
issues? At the very least he can provide informed
recommendations. What host should I use? There are many types of
web hosting available. They range from free to thousands of
dollars a month. Like it or not, most companies are using
Microsoft applications one way or another, chances are you're
using outlook to receive email. (I won't get into what's best,
asp/dot net vs. php/cgi, debate), but your host should be able
to support all current and future Microsoft applications.
Search Engine Optimization - It
doesn't matter what the site looks like if no one sees it.
Hopefully, your designer has a good
working relationship with internet providers and can recommend a
good one for your needs. I'm sure there are designers out there
that take a kick-back for referral, so check around to see if
the price is comparable for the services offered.
Services? Look for a company that
FrontPage Server Extensions
More than adequate bandwidth (you
don't want to have to change horses in the middle of the
stream) Email accounts (no limit on attachment size) with
Secure Shopping Cart available
Sql, Database compatibility
Streaming video/audio compatibility
Site Statistics - Webtrends or
24 - 7 Support