Home – New Forums Tell me straight… What do you want from your web designer?

  • This topic is empty.
Viewing 15 posts - 16 through 30 (of 30 total)
  • Author
    Posts
  • #1007322
    ray_223
    Member
    • Total posts: 594
    Up
    0
    ::
    radharc, post: 6767 wrote:
    A lot of the issue comes down to the building of the spec, both from a development and design view. With a well written specification the job for any designer or developer is very easy. Writing specs is part of what I do, by the way. We are talking detailed technical design specifications, going into all aspects of design and development process.

    CMS Usability is a massive issue. Have you ever watched and seen the hoops that users have to go through with ALL CMS on the market. Truely some need a good usability audit to clean up the issues they have. The usability of CMS is the next wave or issues that are going to become very topical in the next few years, if no sooner.

    [snip]

    Hi Gary,

    I agree. Most people who want a website don’t know why they want a website or what they want to achieve!
    Then when they do accept a proposal it’s like pulling teeth to get them to send actual content.

    On CMS usability – Drupal (http://Drupal.org) the CMS I use mostly is putting a huge amount of effort (and actual cash) to redesign the next version 7. They have hired a few people full time for many months, have done much usability testing in University (and privately paid for) labs.

    I can’t wait for it to come out and set the web development world on fire ;)

    #1007323
    Adam Randall
    Member
    • Total posts: 382
    Up
    0
    ::
    radharc, post: 6767 wrote:
    CMS Usability is a massive issue. Have you ever watched and seen the hoops that users have to go through with ALL CMS on the market. Truely some need a good usability audit to clean up the issues they have. The usability of CMS is the next wave or issues that are going to become very topical in the next few years, if no sooner.

    Cheap design, like content writing, and even web development you are going to always get the discount end of the market.

    Yep, I really find them a nightmare myself, they make it easier for the clueless but once you understand what you are doing, they are trully awfull things that I would never actually use unless I had to.

    I am interested to know what happens when a client of one of these $600 site deals wants to know how they setup the email or how they actually use the thing to update their content or how they need to optimise their images or one of the other 100 questions clients will ask.

    Is it, I am sorry here is your username and password, goodbye….?

    What happens if the client has an exchange server and that needs to be configured properly to allow for mail flow?

    Who sets up the DNS entries correctly so that you will not get domain spam?

    Who sets up the DNS so that when your mail server goes down, you dont lose your emails and their clients dont get a bounced report?

    Who sets up all the pop3 accounts for the domain?

    Who project manages and follows up with the client to ensure they have the content you need so it does not drag on for 6 months?

    Who does the basic keyword research and ensures that the titles make sense so that the web site has half a chance of actually being found?

    This only off the top of my head and does not include the costs to license the appropriate software or do any of the behind the scenes work that you actually dont bill for.

    I think some of us are talking worlds apart when it comes to web design, anyone can put some pretty pictures up and a logo then cut and paste the client information, but all thats going to do is set the client up for a nil return on the site.

    I have a spare lighter that you can use to set the $600 on fire because it will be less painfull…

    #1007324
    LeelaCosgrove
    Member
    • Total posts: 634
    Up
    0
    ::

    *shrugs*

    The problem you have is that there are REALLY good designers based in New Zealand who do AWESOME landing pages for under $500.

    http://www.killercovers.com

    Vaughan works for all the big names in the internet marketing industry.

    The design is good.

    The turn around time is great.

    The customer service is brilliant.

    The price is right.

    These are basic wordpress themes … but that’s all I need for a landing page. I’m not talking full CMS moving bits and pieces pages … but basic landing pages …

    THIS is what LEELA wants from a web designer … as I said, I’m after very basic landing page work – for which I will NOT pay $2,500 … I don’t care how good your customer service is and I don’t care what a great designer you are …

    Not my cup of tea so much, but there are also those Magic Dust guys … they do sites for $495, lock you into a hosting contract and you don’t actually own the site – you can’t take it with you if you leave … but their work is AWESOME and I’ve heard their customer service is very, very good … that’s NOT what I want from my designer, personally – I want to own my site outright – but you have to accept that there is really good design being done for a price you don’t like.

    I never intended to insult anyone – I was just stating a fact.

    I can get good to GREAT design for considerably less than $695.

    I can get all of that with outstanding customer service and a really quick turn around time from Vaughan at Killer Covers …

    #1007325
    LeelaCosgrove
    Member
    • Total posts: 634
    Up
    0
    ::

    Sorry just one more thing … let me point out AGAIN …

    I’m not talking about clients with single websites … I don’t work with that kind of stuff so it doesn’t concern me …

    I’m talking about internet marketers with multiple landing pages. That’s what I buy, that’s what I’m interested in.

    Who sets up emails? Probably no one – there might be an info email, but probably not. If there is- I do it.

    Who does SEO and stuff? The SEO guys.

    Who checks the content is ready? Me, because my team is writing it.

    I’m sure setting up a CMS brochure ware website that advertises a company is an entirely different kettle of fish … but that’s not what I want … and as I stated several times, not the kind of design I’m looking for.

    #1007326
    linkartist
    Member
    • Total posts: 89
    Up
    0
    ::

    Actually, with all due respect, Leela… that Killer Covers company’s design is awful. Bad colours, no attention to negative space, bad photography & typography…

    I guess in the ebook or car sales business that would be considered good enough, but it’s a shame that you can’t see the difference between professional design and these guys.

    We’ll just have to agree to disagree on it :)

    #1007327
    LeelaCosgrove
    Member
    • Total posts: 634
    Up
    0
    ::

    That’s a matter of opinion, Tea.

    It’s not about whether I can tell the difference between good design or not … I never said their work was outstanding, I said it was good … and all I need is good.

    Either way – I know for a FACT that Vaughan’s websites are used for products that sell upwards of $1million a YEAR online.

    Probably a HELL of a lot more than most of the $2500 + websites are making (of course, that’s not REALLY about the design – it’s about the offer, the copy, etc – design is just one element of that).

    My point, anyway, is that they’re good enough.

    You’ll notice in my original post I didn’t say I wanted a work of art.

    I don’t.

    Fact is, most people don’t need a work of art website. It’s a waste of time and money.

    “Awful” designs do just as well (if not better) than works of art … so what’s the point of paying for a work of art?

    I think the disconnect here between what I’m saying and what you’re hearing, is that I’m talking about a market that most designers don’t understand … which is a shame, because it’s a multi-million dollar market … but what those of us in this market need is different to what a retail store or an accountant or a restaurant need … Vaughan understands it perfectly which is why pretty much every big name in the internet marketing industry uses him … he gets the concept …

    My needs for my clients are very specific … it’s never outstanding design (I don’t have time for that) … it’s not about setting up emails and tech support (we don’t have time for that either) … it’s about having something good that works and sells …

    #1007328
    linkartist
    Member
    • Total posts: 89
    Up
    0
    ::

    OK, so then, don’t go bagging out professional designers on a business forum as unprofessional or unreliable.

    You just admitted yourself that you do not value good design. So please don’t go bagging out an industry that you actually don’t know anything about.

    And I mean that in the most respectful, non-personal way possible.

    And on a personal note, I would just like to add that I sometimes find your assumptions about other people’s clients and their size, or what we are earning to be offensive. I don’t think you mean to do it, but I feel like it becomes a bit of a “whip it out” thing — where, when I work with some rather big and famous entertainers who make well more than a million bucks a year (one of them makes 50 times that), but because I am subject to NDAs, cannot really speak about it.

    So please, don’t make assumptions.

    #1007329
    Adam Randall
    Member
    • Total posts: 382
    Up
    0
    ::
    LeelaCosgrove, post: 6775 wrote:
    *shrugs*

    The problem you have is that there are REALLY good designers based in New Zealand who do AWESOME landing pages for under $500.

    http://www.killercovers.com

    I can get good to GREAT design for considerably less than $695.

    Looking at that site, I have to say, I think that more than $500 has gone into that, I would estimate and I have been wrong before (back in 1998) but I would guess more like 5K once you take into account all the work that has gone into it.

    It also looks very MLM to me (but if it works dont knock it) They are selling a website brand pack that would give you the begining of a template with which to work with for US$297, from there a domain name needs to be purchased, the tech stuff still needs to be done etc etc thats even before the client copy goes onto the web page.

    That must easily gobble up a heap of cash not to mention if you are doing this on behalf of the client, then how do you charge for the time you spend organising/managing work between third parties and clients?

    I gather you are talking about the work they produce?

    If thats the case and its just a landing page you are talking about then its just terminology that is wrong here.

    You are not talking about a web site from what I can tell, just a single landing page like the landing page below that I use for one of my adword campaigns:

    http://www.creydall.com/ga/Web%20Design.php

    That takes probably about 1/2 an hour to complete including writing text and is not the same thing as a web site design project.

    Its mentioned that you dont have time for the technical stuff or the seo stuff, does that mean thats an added cost to your clients or they do it themselves?

    Email setup is an important part of the web site project, otherwise how can they be contacted? How would the forms work?

    I agree that web sites do not need to be a work of art, they just need to be profitable, if what you are doing is achieving that end, then keep doing what you are doing. You seem to have a system that works, I just want to know how it works so that I can get it straight in my own head as to what is on offer for the sub $500 mark.

    #1007330
    Adam Randall
    Member
    • Total posts: 382
    Up
    0
    ::
    LeelaCosgrove, post: 6775 wrote:
    *shrugs*
    THIS is what LEELA wants from a web designer

    And what has this got to do with the title of the thread eh (would put a smiley here if there was an option)

    #1007331
    ray_223
    Member
    • Total posts: 594
    Up
    0
    ::

    Are we discussing the question:

    Is web design an art form or a commodity?

    I have started a new thread:
    http://www.flyingsolo.com.au/forums/community-reviews/1192-web-design-development-art-commodity.html#post6809

    #1007332
    LeelaCosgrove
    Member
    • Total posts: 634
    Up
    0
    ::

    That’s interesting.

    So, if I’m paying less than $1,000 I don’t deserve customer service? That’s REALLY interesting … I have many packages within my business that sell for considerably less than $1,000 (and believe it or not, writing can be JUST as time consuming as web design!) – and all of my clients get the same level of outstanding care, regardless of whether they are doing a $97 job or a $20,000 job. Whether they are coming to a seminar, buying a product or getting writing work done.

    And besides … the customer service thing is an issue regardless.

    I’m currently in the market for a very expensive website (I’m expecting in the realm of $6-$10k) – to systemise my business … it’s going to be a huge project …

    And sourcing quotes for that I’ve found exactly the same thing as I’ve always found with landing page work … total lack of professionalism. Total lack of an ability to communicate.

    (When I talk about ‘the design industry’ – I should probably preface with ‘the people in the design industry I’ve personally dealt with’ – I kind of assume that’s what people will take away … I’ve not met everyone in the industry and I’m sure there are some pros out there … I just haven’t had the pleasure of meeting them. Instead, I end up talking to designers who want to do everything via email, who lack communication skills, who lack business sense … who don’t understand that you need to communicate with clients the way THEY want to be communicated with. If you refuse to call me, I won’t do business with you. Email is great but it takes too bloody long to get answers most of the time.)

    linkartist, post: 6779 wrote:
    And on a personal note, I would just like to add that I sometimes find your assumptions about other people’s clients and their size, or what we are earning to be offensive. I don’t think you mean to do it, but I feel like it becomes a bit of a “whip it out” thing — where, when I work with some rather big and famous entertainers who make well more than a million bucks a year (one of them makes 50 times that), but because I am subject to NDAs, cannot really speak about it.

    So please, don’t make assumptions.

    Eh?

    I’m not making assumptions about what industry YOU are working with … I’m talking about the industry I work with … that doesn’t mean you don’t work with multi-million dollar clients. Never said that, never assumed that. Just because I say:

    “The internet marketing industry is a muti-million dollar industry and it’s a shame more designers don’t realise it.”

    How is that making an assumption about you or your clients? I think you’re reading WAY too much into a throw-away statement.

    Frankly, to be perfectly honest … I’ve never thought about your business or your clients that much!

    I just said there’s a multi-million dollar industry out there and it’s a shame more designers don’t realise it … because I know a lot of people are struggling right now … and particularly at a time like this, there’s a LOT of money to be made in this industry.

    … from there a domain name needs to be purchased, the tech stuff still needs to be done etc etc thats even before the client copy goes onto the web page.

    That must easily gobble up a heap of cash not to mention if you are doing this on behalf of the client, then how do you charge for the time you spend organising/managing work between third parties and clients?

    I gather you are talking about the work they produce?

    If thats the case and its just a landing page you are talking about then its just terminology that is wrong here.

    You are not talking about a web site from what I can tell, just a single landing page like the landing page below that I use for one of my adword campaigns:

    http://www.creydall.com/ga/Web%20Design.php

    That takes probably about 1/2 an hour to complete including writing text and is not the same thing as a web site design project.

    Its mentioned that you dont have time for the technical stuff or the seo stuff, does that mean thats an added cost to your clients or they do it themselves?

    Email setup is an important part of the web site project, otherwise how can they be contacted? How would the forms work?

    A heap of cash?

    Domain name: $15 from godaddy.
    Hosting: Depends on client, anywhere from $120 to $900 a year.
    “Tech Stuff”: FTP of html site … I just run fetch in the background – takes all of 5 minutes …
    Killercovers will fix up the forms so they speak to 1shopping cart as part of their fee, so I don’t need to do that.

    So, between $135 and $915 depending on the level of traffic they are expecting.

    I charge on a per-project basis. Into this I have factored how many hours it will take me to organise things x my hourly rate ($250). This is then added into the quote, along with the other bits and pieces and a healthy profit.

    As far as SEO goes – for most of them it’s a waste of time and money. You don’t sell information products by being on the first page of Google. You sell them by using a variety of marketing strategies. SEO is sooooo over-rated as a marketing tool. If you know how to do it and can do it for yourself, great. Otherwise, (for MY clients) I wouldn’t waste the money on it. There’s a million better (cheaper) ways to drive traffic to your site that is active, rather than passive …

    Yes – it’s mainly landing pages (I’ve said as much several times!) … but often these scale out to multi-page sites … using the landing page as the template. They’re not overly complicated – that’s what I’ve said from the start very basic, static, word-press themes, more or less – and they’re not fully managed.

    I disagree … they may not be what YOU call web design projects … but technically … they are projects wherein websites are being designed … so still web projects!

    As far as emails go … this is an ecommerce website. All of the forms are hooked back into shopping cart and CRM, which is hooked up to their primary email address.

    As I say … my needs are different to other people’s needs … they’re industry-specific … I know my industry, I know what they want … if you don’t want to work with them, then who cares? If you do, then it’s important information …

    I understand that other people need other stuff. I was just answering the topic of the question – what do YOU want from YOUR web designer – with a characteristically unpopular response … :)

    Come on … it wouldn’t be a week on Flying Solo if Leela wasn’t stirring up some kind of trouble with her darned ‘opinions’ … and besides there’s been all of these other arguments and I was feeling left out … :(

    #1007333
    Wattsup
    Member
    • Total posts: 12
    Up
    0
    ::

    I think a good idea is to sell perhaps 2 package options.

    One being a set price for a website……perhaps 3 seperate prices depending on the web type size and costs…

    OR

    a low startup/downpayment fee (say $500) with a monthly fee ongoing for 12 months that includes technical help or small web changes…maybe $100-$200 month.

    This builds your passive income ongoing, your client stays with you and the client being a new business startup doesnt have the large upfront costs associated with a good website.

    Cheers

    #1007334
    veebee
    Member
    • Total posts: 11
    Up
    0
    ::

    Two REALLY important parts.

    SEO is overrated unless there are simply no other ways of getting customers for your business. (quick thought!!!) Cant think of too many of those.

    Web Design is more than just the graphics, it is just as much about the words on the page. Unless you are a graphical design business (photographer, etc), what do you need the expensive graphics for. The design of the words, and the message that your customer needs to receive is just as (maybe more) important than the look of your site.

    Veebee

    #1007335
    Adam Randall
    Member
    • Total posts: 382
    Up
    0
    ::
    Wattsup, post: 7422 wrote:
    I think a good idea is to sell perhaps 2 package options.

    One being a set price for a website……perhaps 3 seperate prices depending on the web type size and costs…

    After turning down 3 web site jobs in around the $400 price range this past week, I am thinking I need to probably do this.

    There is definitely a market for it at the moment and often I think the profit margins could be higher than a bigger site.

    #1007336
    Adam Randall
    Member
    • Total posts: 382
    Up
    0
    ::
    LeelaCosgrove, post: 6849 wrote:
    A heap of cash?

    Domain name: $15 from godaddy.
    Hosting: Depends on client, anywhere from $120 to $900 a year.
    “Tech Stuff”: FTP of html site … I just run fetch in the background – takes all of 5 minutes …
    Killercovers will fix up the forms so they speak to 1shopping cart as part of their fee, so I don’t need to do that.

    So, between $135 and $915 depending on the level of traffic they are expecting.

    I charge on a per-project basis. Into this I have factored how many hours it will take me to organise things x my hourly rate ($250). This is then added into the quote, along with the other bits and pieces and a healthy profit.
    (

    Keep going, I am taking notes here:)

Viewing 15 posts - 16 through 30 (of 30 total)
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.