Getting the best from your web design agency

Any business relationship between companies is a two-way street and in this post I want to explore how to get the best from that relationship and ensure it's a long and fruitful partnership.

A client meeting with their website design company

When you, the client, commission a website or web app to be built by your web design agency, that marks the beginning of a partnership that can last years - some of our clients have been with us since we started trading in 2000. Forging a relationship that’s built on effective communication and trust is key to the success of that partnership and ultimately the success of your website.

As techie people our minds - probably from birth - are wired a certain way, we think in terms of processes, systems, patterns, it’s what makes us tick and is probably what led us into the digital careers we find ourselves working in. But, and this is the important bit, we do not expect our clients to think this way. Phew! Don't you feel better already knowing that when you pick up the phone to speak to us you don't have to communicate in code or algorithms?

Clients often apologise to me for not being technical or knowing how a website works and that is absolutely fine. I don’t expect any of our clients to know how a website works, they’re too busy being experts in their industry just as we are busy being experts in ours and that’s the way it should be.

I don’t expect any of our clients to know how a website works

It’s much better if a client comes to us with a problem or opportunity their business is facing and explains it to us in plain English and then leaves it with us to consider the best technical solution. Often what lengthens that conversation, and potentially weakens the end result, is if the client comes to us with their own technical solution which, coming from a non-technical person, isn’t always the best approach and usually causes me to scratch my head and wonder “Why do they want to do that? What’s the business case?”.

Taking a few steps back and getting to the “Why?” that prompted the request allows us to understand what’s at the heart of the issue the client wants to tackle and how best we can go about solving it using technology.

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Michael Walsh by Michael Walsh