Looking to assemble a good web development team? Here are all the things you should look out for when hiring a web development company.
Hiring a good web development team
Once you’ve researched your potential web agencies for creating your new website, you’ll most likely want to schedule a meeting with them.
Arranging a meeting will give you an opportunity to learn about what they offer and more importantly see how they’re planning to offer it.
Obviously, a web development agency may not be upfront that they’re going to outsource parts of your project. So once you’re there, you should take a look around, in order to ensure they’re a good web development company for your project.
You should even ask to speak with everyone including; the web developers, designers, the SEMs and copyrighters if they’re appropriate for your project.
Different skill sets needed for a great web development team
As already mentioned, in-house resources are a great win! They’ll make creating a new website much more affordable for a client, as web companies are not outsourcing any work and then adding their own margins on-top.
Good web developers
A good web developer should be extremely organised, thorough and dedicated to solving potential problems rather than avoiding them.
Clients never really examine any code as they only really view the website’s visual output. However, Google and other search engines examine code, links, website performance and many other checks that can play a massive role in your website’s overall SEO.
A good web developer should:
- Understand your project’s functionality requirements.
- Implement correct code structures such as meta tags, open graph tags and semantic code.
- Look to decrease the overall website load time for easier accessibility (for both users and search engines)
- Remove and redirect any references to pages that offer no value, including inside any automatically generated XML sitemaps.
- Implementing basic security practices such as hiding directory folder contents.
- Thoroughly test across all popular browsers and devices.
Good web designers
A web designer is different from a web developer. Designers are in charge of designing websites, rather than building them.
A good web designer should:
- Understand your project’s visual brief:
- Ask you which websites you like and dislike — and why.
- Show you mockups before the website goes into the development phase.
- As you for relevant visual content such as logos and images to be used on the new website.
- Be proficient in graphic design and software, such as Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator and In-Design for example.
- Have a good understanding of typography, using correct styles and glyphs.
- Be consistent in their digital mockups, so that the web developer understands the universal type sizes, fonts and styles to use when developing.
SEMs are search engine marketers. It’s important that they are involved from the very start as they can overlook the development process. Doing so may help to ensure that the best SEO practices are being met from the very beginning, saving you costs to re-build parts of the website later on.
A good SEM should:
- Be extremely thorough and well organised.
- Be competent in SEO and PPC marketing.
- Be technical, almost at developer-level to cover technical SEO checks.
- Have access to SEM tools, including Ahrefs and Google Ads’ Partner Program, for example.
- Provide you reports on potential opportunities, current rankings and website metrics.
- Be honest and tell you if their approach isn’t working.
Copywriters are the people who can help to write the copy for your website and marketing. Copywriters work closely with SEMs to by getting briefings on topics to cover and keywords to use.
A good copywriter should:
- Be good at adapting to the writing style of a website:
- Consider UK or US spelling based on the location of the client’s business.
- Having the ability to write in multiple languages is a bonus if the website supports them.
- Ability to research and use terms specific to a business sector or audience.
- Be proficient at spelling and grammar.
- Have a good understanding of how keywords work and how to use them both safely and efficiently.
- Be able to structure content, making it easy for humans to comprehend.
- Choose and implementing imagery that best matches both the website’s style guide and current writing topic.
Website support plans and aftercare
It’s important that you get to understand the amount of support you’ll receive once your website is online.
Most web design companies complete support requests on an ad-hoc basis, others have dedicated support plans or even offer both.
Depending on the scale of your website and its requirements, get the costs for these support packages upfront. This is because it might be that only that specific web development team can work with your code structure if the website is too complex to be understood by other companies. By the original development company doing this, it allows them to monopolise on the opportunity to charge anything they want.
On an aside, this is why you should try to get your new website built using WordPress as a content management system. It’s future-proofed by allowing other web development teams to easily understand the website’s file structures, keeping development costs low.