If you’re asking yourself who you should hire to build your website, a local website designer, or a non-local website design firm, we have got some answers to tell yourself. We know that there are so many things to consider when hiring your web design firm, besides geographic location, but to us, it’s one of the most important questions to ask. After all, you don’t drive 4 states away, or to another country to buy a car, do you? Of course not. You buy it from a locally owned car dealership that can be held accountable and offers easy access to their services.
Now, we suggest always keeping your business local, but that doesn’t mean in your same town. Your business may be in Manhattan, but it’s perfectly acceptable to hire a firm in the Bronx or if you do business in the Bronx, hire a web design firm from Manhattan to build your website.The rule of thumb is to stick with someone within a 25-50 mile radius. We realize that could be a lot of towns, but the further your give your local reach, the more talent you can find and choose from.
Let’s get started with the benefits of hiring a locally owned firm first.
Local Website Designer
Choosing to hire a local website design company can compliment your experience exponentially. If you’re in the market for a website, the absolute first thing you should do is contact a firm that is within 25-50 miles of your home base. Just like the days of old, it’s always best to do business with someone you can shake hands with. We believe this to be true from the smallest aspect of buying a pair of shoes, all the way to buying a house.
Benefits of hiring a local website designer
- You’ll be working with someone you can actually meet
- A local firm will know your local geographic area much better than someone outside your neighborhood
- Using someone local eases comfort levels in terms of accountability
- You can get local references from vendors you may know and/or already do business with
- On-going support from a local company is easier to obtain because if they don’t respond, you can go their place of business
We aren’t saying that your safe using the kid down the street, or the guy you work with that dabbles in web design, often times that’s even worse than outsourcing your web design work. What we’re saying is if someone took the time and investment to actually open a reputable business that pays taxes and employs your neighbors, you should give them every opportunity to prove their worth. That’s the beauty of small business. Those who provide superior quality work will survive and those who do not will be putting that “out of business” sign shortly after opening their doors.
A reputable company in your area is probably much easier to find than you think. The best way to search for one is to go to Google’s map search feature at http://maps. google.com and type in your search as you normally would. Google’s map search will automatically detect your location and offer your results based on your keywords and location. You’ll be able to get reviews and most likely a phone number, link to their website and directions to their business. If you do this search, we’re 99% sure you’ll find a local web design firm in your area.
Food for thought when using Google’s map search:
- Make sure the business is a business
- Make sure they have some reviews. Doing business with a company that doesn’t have a single Google review means their customers were not happy enough to go and tell anyone about how good they are.
- Remember to watch the city. Sometimes, if there isn’t a local firm, Google will start to show results of the closest results to your location.
Now lets discuss what happens farming out your web design work.
Non-Local Website Designer
Farming out your web design or internet marketing is a very dangerous path to take. Don’t get us wrong. There are some (a handful) of reputable firms online that perform their work in another state, or even another country. Finding them is harder than finding a needle in a haystack, but if you can, you can get top quality work done at an affordable cost. Of course, you still lack some of the important features of doing business locally like; keeping your money in your local town/city; ability to meet, in-person, the programmer you’re hiring; all accountability goes right out the window.
We could go into the whole “comparison based” examples in this article, but you’ve probably already heard them all. Instead of telling you about how you could be ripped off by the firm you choose when outsourcing, we’ll tell you the true reasons why you should never farm out your web design work.
- The programmers and designers hired by outsourcing firms have absolutely no experience or education in their profession.
- 99% of all outsources are people who are earning $2-$4 dollars per hour. What kind of outcome do you expect at $4 dollars per hour?
- 80% of over seas programmers will only deliver what is specified in the quote request. This means if you don’t know exactly what to tell them, you’ll get their interpretation of what you were asking for. Then, when you ask for changes, they’ll charge you extra for them.
- Completion rates are only at 10%. This means that whatever deadline you give them, 90% of the time, they will fail to meet that deadline.
- Support is awful. We mean awful. Once they deliver a project, they close your account and unless you agree to pay more, even if the code they wrote doesn’t work, they’ll charge you more.
- Content written by outsources is so bad that 9 out of 10 times you’ll need to write whatever you paid them to write for you, all over on your own time. Now you lost your money and your time.
- Language barrier. This is often times the most difficult thing to overcome. How can you do business with someone that you can’t even talk to or understand when they talk to you.
The biggest thing to consider, besides the above, is this; why on earth would you want to send your hard earned money to another area? Keeping your business local ensures that your neighbors have jobs; that your schools have income; that your local law enforcement is on the beat; and most importantly, that your money isn’t going to go to a country that treats people terribly.
We strongly discourage using outsourced web design services at all costs, but like we said, there are some reputable firms out there and we don’t want this article to give them a bad name.
In closing, if you’re in the market and looking for some solid advice, contact a local firm. Talk to them on the phone, visit their place of business and get a quote. Then, find an outsourcer and interview them. Compare your experiences and we promise, you’ll definitely be happy you read this article and followed the above tip. Working with someone local is always going to win.