It can be challenging to decide whether to hire a web design agency or a freelancer. Use this article to evaluate which choice is best for your company. When embarking on a website design or re-design project for your business, the first decision that you will need to make is whether to work with a freelancer or with a web design agency.
Since there are few barriers to becoming a web designer/developer, there is a lot of competition in the industry and the choices can be overwhelming.
For most companies, a website project is a large undertaking, requiring a significant investment of both money and time.
Before you make this important decision, consider this points :
When hiring a freelancer for any type of project, accountability is always a concern. While some freelancers come highly recommended, it can be more difficult to assess the reviews and experience of a freelancer compared to an agency. You’re also relying on that individual to complete the project from start to finish. If you’ve hired an individual rather than an agency, and that person becomes unavailable, you may have to start from the very beginning with someone new.
To reduce your dependency on one person, make sure the website is built on a popular content management system platform, such as WordPress.
Using a popular platform means that there are tons of web developers and experts available, in case you ever need help with the site and your freelancer isn’t available.
A content management system allows you to easily add or edit the content on the site, so you can manage the site long-term without needing a developer to make every change for you.
Freelancer Skillset :
One of the biggest disadvantages of working with a freelancer is that you are limited to the skills and resources of that person. Designing and building a website is similar to building a house in that it requires a lot of different skill sets. You wouldn’t expect the architect to also do the plumbing nor the construction crew to help with the interior design of the house.
In the same way, it’s extremely unlikely that you’ll find one individual that is an expert in web strategy, UX design, web development, and project management. With an agency, you’ll work with a team on the website project and each member of the team will be a specialist in one of these skills.
When using freelancers for a project, you can make sure all resources are covered by hiring several freelancers, each one an expert in a different skill.
The only challenge is that you’ll be responsible for handling communication between the different parties, whereas an agency would provide a project manager whose role is similar to a general contractor that oversees the project from start to finish.
Diverse Experience :
The major advantage of working with a web agency is that you’ll have a team dedicated to the web project, including a web strategist, a web designer, a project manager and a web developer or development team. Each team member will bring a different set of skills to the project. For instance, a web strategist is similar to an architect. When you are building a house, you need to start with a strategic blueprint.
In this same way, the strategist creates a wireframe for the website and considers the user experience of the site and makes sure the site is built with your web visitors in mind.
A lot of businesses skip this step if they decide to work with a freelancer or a small agency, but it is a critical piece to a successful website.
Credibility Support :
Another advantage of working with a web agency is that an agency typically has more credibility in the community and has a reputation to uphold. When evaluating agencies and freelancers, it is typically easier to view the credibility of an agency in online reviews, past client work, and awards, while you may not have easy access to that information with a freelancer.
In addition to credibility, you’ll typically find more on-going support from an agency. A freelancer is dependent on getting new projects and work.
After the website launches, it’s common for a freelancer to be busy on new projects and ongoing support and small fixes that may be pushed to the end of the queue.
Consider Your Web Project Goals :
In the end, you’ll need to consider the role your website will play in your business. If you are starting a new business and need a simple site to establish a web presence, then a freelancer or a smaller agency may be a good choice. If your website will play a critical role in your marketing and if it includes e-commerce or more complex items, then an agency would be a wiser investment. A high-quality website requires several different skill sets.