If you’re in the market for a custom web development company, you might be wondering how to start your search. You may already know exactly what you need or want a web design partner to help you along the way. Either way, with hundreds of custom web design firms to choose from, the competition is fierce, and it will pay to do your research.
What Does A Custom Web Development Company Do?
A custom web design company helps you create a new, professional website. Depending on who you choose, you should expect your project manager, web developers, and designer to understand your needs and goals, develop a strategy and create a next-level design for your new site.
Ten Things A Custom Website Company Provides For Your Business
All companies do things a little differently, but we’re covering the basics of the services we provide at The MMC Agency and what you should look for before choosing one of the custom web development companies out there.
1. A Free Discovery Call
Discuss your web development project and ask questions before you sign up for a website with any professional team. At The MMC Agency, it’s our goal to make sure we’re the right fit for you and give you any input that we can to help make your web development project a success!
2. A Full Range of Design Services
This means having the technical skills to offer custom solutions to understanding various web application options and digital marketing. A comprehensive custom website design often means that your business needs additional support services – from brand and logo custom designs to copywriting and digital marketing packages.
It’s usually best to work with a team or agency that offers more than just website design so that your business can focus on building a relationship with one partner to handle all of your online needs today and in the future.
3. A Plan For Success
We start our process with a comprehensive sales and onboarding journey for all of our customers. We want to make sure that we are the best option for their custom web development and that we fully understand their company, brand, culture, and objectives. We do that with a proven process that allows our clients (individuals and businesses) to complete an online questionnaire easily and upload relevant information we need to develop for them (such as account information and logo files, etc.) We focus on making the process easy for the companies we work with. While every company may have a unique approach, it’s critical to ask if they have one. An industry leader who reaches success consistently will be able to walk any potential client through what to expect throughout the web development journey.
4. A Custom Website Design that Starts on Paper (or in a document)
Good web designers start with a wireframe or map that becomes the guide for web development. By creating a template for the site before you begin to develop individual pages, you can assess the site comprehensively and make sure that it makes sense. One of your custom web design goals may be more visitors, but if those visitors don’t know what to do or where to go, you haven’t achieved development success.
At The MMC Agency, we start each product with a site map that analyzes the user journey and includes each page’s sections and call to action options. Before the first web page is created, we have laid out the overall idea on paper. This also helps our customers work with us through each section. It acts as a guide for what we’ve accomplished and what’s next throughout the project.
5. The Ability to Integrate Services and Applications
Often, your custom web development may require additional technology or technologies. This could be anything from integrated booking or payment technology to a custom web application. A custom website design firm should have the ability to integrate and/or develop technologies that will give you the functionality you need for your project. You don’t need to understand web code and API keys to assess your custom web design team – simply explain the functionality and end goals you’re looking to achieve. A professional firm that has worked on a number of custom projects for clients should be able to easily explain how they’ll reach your goals (without using complicated jargon or industry terms).
6. Mobile Development and Mobile Optimization
For any custom web development, mobile matters. More than 50% of online users are visiting your website from a mobile device. Mobile includes devices like a smartphone (think iPhone or Android) or a tablet. And during website development, your site should be optimized for mobile viewing. Depending on the website platform, this means that the company you choose will be creating your custom website to look and perform beautifully on a laptop, desktop, phone, or tablet. This focus is imperative because it is often how a potential client or customer will find you, so you want to look your best!
7. Search Engine Optimization
Development services should include SEO. Search engine optimization is a frequently discussed term that simply asks, how can I improve my ranking on Google? When you type in “best website design company” or “custom design services” on Google – or in any search engine – SEO is one of the factors that will determine what companies get displayed at the top of the page. Why would you see The MMC Agency versus Lounge Lizard? Often, it’s because of SEO.
If our website is optimized correctly and meets the standards Google lays out, it may be in the first place, while a competitor like Lounge Lizard comes in at number two. While there are hundreds of factors at play that would impact the online image you see after a search, any website design from a professional team should include foundational or basic SEO. At The MMC Agency, we include proper website structure, metadata, tags, recommended disclosures, speed optimization, and more. And while we prefer not to lose business to our competition, we care most that you get the expertise you deserve when investing in custom website development. Don’t overlook this service, as it does matter.
8. The Ability to Develop a Custom Website Design
Custom web design and web application development may seem obvious, but it’s important to unpack what this part of your project entails. While design templates may make sense, you want a site that is uniquely yours and totally custom. Your company website should reflect who you are, what you do, and talk directly to your customers. You can’t do that if you look and sound like everyone else out there.
9. A Custom Website Launch Plan
A clear path after your launch should be included in your web design services. When we work with businesses on their website development, we understand the importance of a custom design that represents their brand well and attracts their clients. But we also want to help their company with a clear launch plan and offboarding. During our client offboarding, we’ll finalize SEO data on their website, install speed optimization, conduct pre-launch and post-launch site testing and make sure our business clients feel happy and excited about the new website and development we’ve completed on their behalf!
10. Ongoing Maintenance Options
Often, clients come to The MMC Agency after working with another firm on their custom website development. They are beyond frustrated because after they had a successful website launch, they didn’t have a way to keep it current. We have many clients who can’t access their site, can no longer reach their web team, or have a site completely locked down by the agency they chose. We firmly believe that your website is a critical asset for your business, and we want you to have complete access and control over its future. For us, this means that we work with our clients to identify key areas that may need regular updates (this may be the homepage, products page, blog page, etc.) and provide training or videos that take them step by step through how to make an update or change. We also offer ongoing maintenance services at a set cost for those clients that prefer to use our expertise to keep their business website current.
How Do I Choose a Custom Web Design Company?
Excited about working with a custom web development company but not sure how to begin? No problem!
Let’s start with the basics. You need a team with expertise and a client focus, in addition to web solutions that work! While not every web design business has the same offerings, we’ve listed what to expect from The MMC Agency below so you can know what to expect from any professional web design agency.
- Our process starts with a free no-obligation discovery call. It’s important that you can talk with all of the companies you have short-listed and understand what they offer for custom web design services. You also want to get a feel for the sales process and make sure you feel comfortable with the representative’s understanding of your needs and goals, the industry, and the functionality you want for your custom website design.
- During your initial call and decision-making process, ask questions about the team you’ll be working with. From the professional developers to your project lead, you want to understand who you’ll be talking to and how they’ll be working together to create during the development process.
We recommend asking questions such as:
- Can you explain your development process?
- Will I have a point person throughout the custom website design process?
- How will I communicate with my developers and team lead – will we have regular check-ins?
- What is the expected timeline for my web design project, and how will we be tracking progress?
- Is there an additional cost for any of the services we’ve covered on this call?
- Once a client has decided they want to work together, we send a contract that outlines the scope for our websites, the responsibilities for both our development team and our client, the timeline, and more. We also have a clear breakout of the total cost for our websites and a payment schedule. Having a contract protects you as the customer and is an absolute must for web development projects. Don’t send any money to a designer or agency without clear expectations.
- Once the contract is signed and the deposit paid, the project is officially underway, and the real excitement begins for our team and clients.
Need a little more assurance that you’ve chosen the right professional web development company?
Get online and start Googling the companies you’re considering. You should be able to easily find reviews, websites they’ve created and see how they position themselves in the market. All of those things can tell you a lot about the business and give you the confidence to move forward!
At The MMC Agency, we’d love to help bring your custom site to life. Book a free discovery call with our custom design sales team and get started with custom web development services today!