Entries tagged with “Web design”.


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The blog has been quiet for some time now, we have been doing some house cleaning. In the coming months there will be some interesting changes, one of these changes is our presence on Twitter.

Twitter is a brilliant source for News and Information. In this the first of many Twitter Monthly Roundup posts I’ll share with you some of the best articles I found related to small business online. If you would like to find us on Twitter look for @ebc_chet and @ebc_ali.

Put Ad on Web. Count Clicks. Revise (NYtimes.com)

A good read that talks about the strengths of data analysis when adevertising online.

How site personas can enhance your site. (boagworld.com)

When developing a website it’s a great idea to create user personas, it’s a great exercise for understanding the readers coming to your website. Have you overlooked you websites persona though? It’s equally as important, this article will explain why.

7 Tips for Effective Calls to Action (blog.hubspot.com)

Have you defined your websites goals? If so is your call to action statement well designed? A good read talking about the importance of well designed call to action statements.

12 Tips For Designing an Excellent Checkout Process (smashingmagazine.com)

Shopping Online can be a painful process, help ease the pain and make your customers experience shopping at your online store secure, reliable and easy.

9 Essential Principles for Good Web Design (psd.tutsplus.com)

It’s all about the details, this article is a little more web developer focused however it’s still a valuable read for any company that is relaunching or getting a new website developed.

How to Improve Your Branding With Your Content (smashingmagazine.com)

Your content is a very large part of your Companies branding online, Rick Sloboda wrote an excellent article for Smashing Magazine discussing this very topic. For all you Vancouver locals, Rick has been a long time speaker for eBusiness Connections and he has an upcoming “Writing for the Web” Seminar on June 8th. You can register for this seminar at the Small Business Education Center

Creating Your Own Deadlines and Setting Aggresive Goals for Your Business (thenetsetter.com)

A great read discussing the benefits to setting aggressive goals for your business.

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The average small business does not know how to find a web designer or web developer. However, with some initial planning and careful preparation, you will be able to find a web development professional to meet your business needs.

1. Evaluate the Needs of Your Online Business Presence

Setting clear, concise goals will help you understand what your business wants to achieve from the website. Create a “Request for Proposal,” or RFP, to write these goals down and determine which website features are essential and which ones would be nice additions. A website RFP is also useful when you are recruiting and communicating with web development professionals. Download the following document to help you develop your proposal: Create an RFP for Your Website.

2. Narrow Down a Group of Web Designers/Web Developers

After creating your website RFP, you will need to shortlist a group of web development professionals. Below is a list of websites that will help you assemble your potential shortlist:

Additionally, a Google search for “Vancouver freelance web design” or “Vancouver web designers” will give you many different local web designers to consider.

When looking at the portfolios of potential web designers, think about the following questions:

  • Do I like the look and feel of their previous work?
  • Do they have quality references?
  • Have they created websites similar to what I need for my website?
  • Do they have all the technical skills required to complete the job? It’s important that whoever you choose to work with thoroughly understands the technical requirements necessary for your website.

3. Email Your Website RFP

Email your website RFP to the entire list of potential web designers you have shortlisted. Here is an easy way to do so:

  1. Compose a new email address it to yourself.
  2. Add all your potential web designers to the BCC field of your e-mail
  3. Create a clear subject line, such as “XYZ Business is looking to have a website created (RFP attached)”
  4. Write a brief introductory sentence describing your business and yourself
  5. Attach your website RFP to the e-mail, send and then wait for feedback

4. Review, Negotiate and Get Comfy.

Next you’ll be reviewing the feedback from you website RFP. There will likely be a mix of good, not-so-good and standout replies. If possible, call and make a one-on-one appointment with the candidates that stood out. Meeting the potential web designer is very important, especially since you will want to feel comfortable working together. Consider the following points when meeting a web designer:

  • There is no need to pay for an initial meet and greet
  • If you do not already have a domain name or web hosting, let the designer know you will still need to do so. It is ideal to have both registered in your business name
  • Ask for references to websites that the designer created with similar requirements to your own needs
  • It is okay to ask for a list of past clients to contact. If you do contact a reference, the only question that really matters is whether the client would work with the designer again. The only answer that matters is “Yes.”
  • It is not common that a quality web designer will develop a website mock-up for you as a free pitch to get the contract. This approach will often scare away quality talent
  • A quality web designer will listen to your plan, assess your needs, and provide constructive feedback regarding any areas of your website plan that may need improvement

5. Get Everything in Writing

After picking a web designer, commit everything about the project to writing, including:

  • Financial terms and payment schedules
  • Any legal requirements that need signing off
  • Itemized list of what and when deliverables will be provided to you by the web designer
  • Itemized list of what and when deliverables will be provided by you to the web designer
  • A project timeline outlining key milestone and final release dates
  • Having everything in writing provides both parties with a clear blueprint of what is expected.

    Following this process will help to make the process of finding a web designer an easier task. The time spent planning your website needs will make for an organized, well-communicated working relationship between yourself and the designer you choose to create your website.

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