When you need a new website skip the salesman

You’ve probably encountered this situation in your quest for the right web site developer. Here’s typically what happens when you hire someone to build you a new website.

You describe what you’re doing, your business and why you want a website

(Developer google’s your company’s name to see if you have an existing site, or check up on your business online)

You: We actually have several branches but we only want one site, with a map pointing out our three locations, and menus of the specials for each location.

(Developer googles mapping plugins / menu plugins)

You: Have you ever worked on sites like this?

(Developer looks over search results… sees plugins… feels ‘confident’…)

“Sure, absolutely.”

So you sign him on and perhaps hand over an initial amount and development starts.

Developer (to friend): Hey, the map isn’t working? I can’t display a specific custom post based on a particular page?

Friend: Why not google it or try searching on Stack Exchange?

Developer: Oh yea, right. Got it!

…a few days later…

You: How is it going? I haven’t heard anything from you

You: Hello…

You: Anyone there?

You: Hello…?

…and radio silence. Your developer doesn’t reply to your emails or take your phone calls. Basically communication and your schedule are both off.

You won’t know this from your first meeting but your web developer may be doing this for the first time. In this day and age where practically there’s a website designer around every corner this is a familiar situation. And it’s seen around the world not just in your country.

He’s the salesman. He presents himself as if he’s the one, with ample knowledge and experience, promising you he can do everything. In reality, he’s either getting other people to get the work done or doing it with much R&D and Internet searching… after taking your money.

You’ll most probably find his quote much below other, more experienced designers/developers. You won’t know this but he’ll take your money and either deliver a site that’s riddled with errors–not what you wanted–or do it on his time table.

That’s why if you need a new website you need to skip the salesman.

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