Choosing an agency partner for your next development project can be a stressful undertaking. After all, you rely on a company's portfolio and promises to make your choice, with little indication of whether that company will actually follow through. But even with that pressure to make the right choice, there are plenty of wrong reasons for picking an agency to partner with for your project. Here are 5 of them, which you should aim to avoid at all times.
1) Low Price
We're not saying that price should not enter your consideration when choosing an agency. But it definitely should not be the driving factor behind your decision. Simply going with the lowest price results in a simple situation: you get what you pay for.
Instead, ask yourself why your potential agencies charge the price that they do. The ones on the low end may be giving you discounts to get in the door, but chances are they also have lower development costs by cutting corners in the process. Considering your project as an investment rather than a cost can help turn your focus away from price as your only consideration.
2) Lofty Claims
When an agency promises you the moon, they will probably just moon you. The web is full of promises that will get you the best-looking site on the internet, all within 2 weeks, and all within a budget you never expected. That may be an exaggerated example, but the gist remains: if something is too good to be true, it probably is just that.
That's not to say that development agencies can't back up their claims. It only means that when choosing your web development partner, you should look for evidence that they have successfully accomplished their goals in the past. Look through their portfolio, read online reviews, and contact past clients to ask for feedback and gain more realistic expectations of what it’s like to work with them.
3) Pressure To Choose Now
"We can help you, but you have to sign up today!" Countless businesses use this sense of urgency to get you to make a decision before you have time to thoroughly consider it. It's when the claims get urgent, and the reasons get dubious, that you should begin to get cautious.
A development agency that tells you today's websites should be mobile-optimized has a point. An agency that tells you your SEO will suffer immediately if you don't get a new website RIGHT NOW, though, is probably exaggerating. Similarly, a special offer that only lasts a day is probably transferable to the future. Guess what? The agency still wants you as a client tomorrow. Take the time to thoroughly consider your action rather than rushing into such a major commitment.
4) Development Timeline
In some cases, this is actually a valid decision factor for picking an agency for your project. If you need to go live soon or lose business otherwise, you should prioritize agencies that can help you accommodate your needs.
But most often, timelines are a secondary concern. How much does the time it takes for the development project truly matter, if the goal is a beautiful end product? Sure, you don't want a 5-week timeline to turn into a 15-week project. The difference between 6 and 8 weeks, however, is much more manageable.
5) Agency Size
Especially when it comes to agencies, bigger is not always better. You may be tempted to choose the largest and most prestigious web development partner you can find in your research, particularly if the cost doesn't differ much from smaller shops. But in fact, size should not be the determining factor in making your choice.
Think about it: would you rather be one of 10, or one of 200 current clients? The latter means you could get lost among countless other projects, while the former ensures your agency will prioritize your work. Of course, that does not mean smaller agencies are always better either. Size should not fall under your ‘must have’ list in an agency.
How To Pick Your Next Agency
Given all of these wrong reasons for picking a web development agency, what criteria should you actually use? Above all, focus on agencies that can show quality work in the past. Ask for past clients in your industry to examine their work.
In addition, be sure to get in touch with the agency to discuss your individual needs, and allow them to convince you why they are the right partner for you. A successful development project will necessitate a productive working relationship. Choosing to establish contact as early as possible will greatly increase the chances that your agency can stand up your new website to the satisfaction of you and your visitors.