Aligning With the Right Creative Team for Your Next Website Design Project

Whether embarking on a new website design for a brand just launching into the market, or a refresh for a well established company – the success of the project depends on the team you are working with. From agency to freelancer, there are a myriad of routes to take and styles to choose from.

Choosing a designer to work with on a website design is kind of like walking through the cereal aisle in the supermarket. There are more options than you know what to do with – and ones that you might be drawn to with flashy packaging – but theres only one that you really know will be your go-to every morning.

So what makes one creative better than another for your project needs? And how do you choose?

Begin by making a short list of design firms and/or designers you would like to work with. Whether from references, search engine or advertisement – in the initial stages, consider designers that you feel are in alignment with your aesthetic style and tone who offer the range of services needed to deliver a robust project scope.

Consider the Source

While it can be appealing to work with a freelancer or friend, and they are often just as experienced – there are far reaching benefits to collaborating with a creative agency. Rather than working with one point of view, the value adds of working with an agency team are varying prospective and range of skill set. From content strategy to design all the way to development, to have an entire set of stakeholders in your corner who all understand the end goals is an invaluable asset when designing a website.

Get The Job Done

After identifying that the creative team can achieve your desired design aesthetic, its critical to determine that they can implement all aspects of the project needed to reach a successful launch. Web design isn’t just about delivering a great looking interface – it must be designed on the right platform for the business and developed accordingly. While many designers farm out the development to a separate team, the benefits of working with a full integrated team are far reaching and help to build a more integrated site meeting all the needs of the end user and company. Look for a team that also offers seo and recommendations for hosting – this will usually ensure better long term support and a higher instance of conversion.

Make The Connection

Its been recently stated that many clients will choose an agency in no small part because of their company culture. If a team aligns with your aesthetic style, they will mesh with your personal and business style, right? Not always. Setting an initial discovery or exploratory meeting does more than just inform of the project scope – it is essentially a first date for both the client and creative team to ensure that all parties would like to move forward to the next stage of discussion or proposal creation. If possible, visit the teams offices or video conference to get a feel for the environment and the level of enthusiasm/feedback for your project and business. While it may seem simple, make sure you actually like the people you will be working with – collaboration takes on many phases and its important to have a team that you can speak freely with.

Show Don’t Tell

The saying ‘you get what you pay for’ often rings true. In the initial stages when presenting, many can offer a lot of talk – and unfortunately, sometimes it isn’t backed up by great work. Taking a look at past projects to ensure the agency you are considering can implement the scope of work can avoid future bumps, extra cost or late delivery.

Designing a website for your brand is no small feat, and can often make or break the reputation of a business, so its more important than ever to make certain you are working with the right people. Take the time to develop a creative brief so your point of view and goals are clear to the chosen team. This will align the project from its inception and help in kicking off a productive process.

Vanessa Petersen

As Executive Director of Brand Strategy based in ArtVersion’s Portland office, Vanessa manages both national and West Coast accounts. She brings with her a passion for strategy with extensive experience in creative marketing, brand growth and development. She is a true advocate of storytelling and brand building from the inside out, and her keen knowledge of the marketplace, trend patterns and usability lead her to identify opportunities that can inspire powerful design strategies.

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