How can you tell a GREAT Website Designer from an average (or poor) one?
A good way to answer this question is to approach it like you would when buying anything of importance, say a house for example.
“You wouldn’t build a house with an unknown builder”
You wouldn’t build a house with an unknown builder, with slim or poor examples of previous work and no reviews.
Look at the websites they’ve completed and who they’ve worked with.
What is their client base primarily made up of? Is it diverse in both small and large business and also style of site? If a designer has ONLY completed minor, simple websites for small clients it can show two things:
- They may not have the ability to develop complex websites and lack experience/knowledge if you ever need to expand.
- Larger businesses do not trust them enough to invest in them building & maintaining their website.
Our portfolio of clients is as diverse as can be and we work with all clients within a range of budgets across multiple platforms. From small “mum & pop” shops just starting out, to international companies; we’ve worked with them all, including some of the largest brands in Australia such as Jetstar, Redsbaby, Boating & RV, Cairns Reef Casino, Mitre10 and more.
How long have they been in business?
We’re not saying that all new businesses are bad, there could be many great web designers starting out. However, it’s hard to predict what a business will be to work with if there is no history or track record to show.
We’ve been around for 20 years now. Think about that. Many of our competitors have came and gone in that time leaving their clients in the dark, when we’ve been here all along supporting ours for two decades. There is a reason some businesses fail and some succeed. We’re extremely proud to still be thriving and growing year after year.
Do they have any reviews from previous customers?
The best way to predict the future is by looking at the past. So what do their clients have to say about them?
We can confidently say our customers love us. We have over 64 five star reviews from our clients and growing. If you read our reviews page you’ll see over and over how happy our customers are and how much confidence they have in our ability to provide for them.
We also have some of the highest customer retention in our industry with over 70% of our customers staying with us for multiple years and choosing us to rebuild their websites with us again.
How could a website benefit my business?
Why having a professional website improves sales for your business.
Increasingly, the first thing people do when in need of a product or service is to load up Google and search for that item or service. If you don’t have a website, your business will be invisible to millions of potential customers looking for the products and services you sell. It’s not rocket science to figure that one out, however, just having a website is not enough. Your website needs multiple elements that tie in together to have your business succeed online.
A high conversion website must be:
- Visually impressive: You need to stand out from the crowd and inspire confidence in your users that you are the best business to serve them.
- Mobile friendly: Everyone has a smartphone or tablet now. You’re not always in front of a computer when you have an idea or need for something and it’s imperative your business not only show up in the search results, but also displays correctly on their mobile phone. Over 60% of google searches occur on mobile now, so it’s more important than ever to have a mobile friendly website.
- Load Quickly: Your website page speed needs to strike the correct balance between having great visuals and also being able to load as quickly as possible. If your home page takes 10 seconds to load, your users will probably leave before it finishes loading. People are inpatient. Why wait that 10 seconds when your competitors website loads in under 2 seconds and has similar products? Google also favours fast loading websites – this is very important.
- Have Useful Content: Show your audience what you you offer. Why is your product or service better than the competition? Do you have any reviews that inspire confidence in your brand? Are you positioning yourself as an expert in your field? How often do you update your web pages or create new content? All of these elements factor in to higher search engine rankings. If you do need a hand writing your website content, we can put you in touch with a great website seo copywriter.
We are experts in web design, with over 20 years experience designing websites, and winning multiple design awards, we can help you take your business to the next level or dare we say it “Above & Beyond”.
How much does a website cost?
I know you’d love to get a concrete answer here, but the truth is asking how much a website costs depends entirely on the features you require.
- Are you wanting to sell products and take payments online or are you showcasing services instead?
- How many pages or products do you need to show on the site?
- Do you want an admin area you can login to and update/create new pages yourself?
- Have any examples of websites you’d like something similar to?
- What platform do you want the site built on?
- Redesigning your old site? – if so are we to copy across products and customers into the new site?
- Are you the primary decision maker, or do decisions need to go through multiple people or a committee?
As you can see these are only a few questions that quickly come to mind when trying to scope out features & prices for a new web design build. A great article website prices can be seen here.
Without knowing any details from you about the project, the best we can do is provide some starting prices.
- Basic Single Page Website: Starting from $1450 ex GST
- Basic Brochure Site (3-4 pages, no ability to update yourself): Starting from $2,250 ex GST
- Small WordPress Site (4-6 pages, with ability to update yourself): Starting from $3,750 ex GST
- Medium WordPress Site (6+ pages, project gallery, blog with ability to update yourself): Starting from $4,450 ex GST
- Large Corporate Website (many pages, multiple page layouts, ability to update yourself): Starting from $7,950 ex GST and can go up over $10k depending on features required.
- BigCommerce custom stencil theme & WooCommerce shopping carts. Starting from $5,750 ex GST and can go higher than that based on features required.
- BigCommerce modifications to existing theme. Starting from $300 ex GST
Ok great, what is your hourly rate for smaller projects?
If you have an existing website and want us to make changes to it, our hourly rate is $180 inc GST.
The best way to get a quote is to send us a list of changes required to your site and we will respond with an estimate and timeframe for you.
How long does it take to build a website?
In Short: 6-8 weeks
In Detail: If all content is prepared beforehand, it usually takes one to two weeks for a design prototype to be built and approved., Another four to six weeks to code the design into a working website. Finally, two additional weeks are required for adding in content, checking over website and testing before going live.
The time-frame is often dictated by the client. If you have a deadline in mind we will endeavour to meet it for you.
The most common delay we see is waiting for content (text/images) to be sent to us by the client. You would be amazed at how common it us for us to design and code a site, and get to the part where the client needs to add in text for the pages and the site sits there for months waiting for the client to get the content written. That’s why we think it’s extremely important to employ a proper website copywriter.
Here’s our 10 step process:
- [Week 0] We’ll assess your requirements and provide a detailed quote
- Ready to proceed? We’ll ask you for a 25% deposit before we begin
- [Week 1] We’ll design your website prototype and send it to you for review
- Design approved? We can now start coding your site (we’ll need a 25% progressive payment at this stage)
- [Week 6] Coding complete: We’ve finished coding your design into a working website and now it’s ready for content to be added – 25% progressive invoice at this stage.
- [Week 7-8] Your content is inserted, your site is set up online and we check it meticulously for bugs
- You get full video training on how to manage your site
- [Week 9] It’s time for you to review and provide final approval. Your 25% final payment is now due before going live.
- Congratulations! Your site has gone live and you can now start doing business online
- Finally we’ll review results and provide continuing support, if necessary.
Important considerations when planning a new website
- Do you need a shopping cart (ecommerce) or service based website?
For example: are you an online store selling t-shirts, or a plumber showing their services.
- Do you have a preferred platform or software in mind?
Most websites run on an underlying piece of software or a “platform”, an example of this is WordPress or BigCommerce. WordPress is the software that powers your website, and we design the “theme” that sits on top of it. The same goes for BigCommerce. BigCommerce is the world’s leading ecommerce shopping cart platform. We’re experts in creating BigCommerce themes. Don’t stress if you’re unsure on this. It’s our job to advise you on which is the best platform for your needs.
- Do you require web hosting?
Would you like to host your website with us or can you provide it yourself? Web hosting is the service that keeps your website available and online 24/7 so users can see it. Think of it as a block of land for a house. You can’t build a house unless you have a block of land to build it on. Read more about our web hosting packages here.
- Do you know what you like and dislike?
Meaning, have you looked at your competition and other websites in your industry and worked out what features you like or would like in your new website and what you don’t like / don’t want in your site? Sometimes knowing what you DON’T want in your website is a great step forward in planning your design. A great place to start would be to fill in our project planner.
- Do you need a logo designed?
If you’re a new business, we can help design your logo and create your brand identity as well. Just make sure you’ve put some thought into that so you can point us in the right direction when we start designing some concepts for you.
- Do you need help writing content for your new website?
We’ve seen it over and over. We get the site designed and coded and ready for the pages to be built our and text added to the pages and the client can’t figure out what to write, then the website sits there in limbo for weeks (or even months).If you’re not confident in writing the text for your pages or are strapped for time, we heavily encourage you to enlist the help of a professional website copywriter. Not only will they help you build out your page content, they are also trained in how to write the text so search engines have a better chance of picking up your keywords so you rank better in google.
Can I have access to the source files?
Yes, any work done will have to be uploaded to your BigCommerce account anyway so you will have the ability to take a backup of your template files. We can also email you any files you require. Once paid for you can do whatever you want with them.
What after sales service do you offer?
We fully support any website we design and are always available via phone, email or live chat should you encounter any problems or require any enhancements. We can offer website maintenance per project or on a monthly basis so that your website never get outs of date.
Also, as long as the website we’ve built has not been edited/customised by a 3rd party, if you find any bugs with it in the first 2 years we will fix them for free.
Are there any ongoing costs?
We quote per project and that is a one off fee. The only ongoing costs would be your BigCommerce monthly fee (if using BigCommerce), Web hosting (if using WordPress) or if you have us register your domain name for you ($59 every 2 years) or SSL Certificate ($99 every year).
Do I have to host my website with you, or can I host it somewhere else?
You may move your website to another web hosting service at any time. If you’re hosting your website with us, all hosting bills need to be paid in full first.
Once your website has been completed, we can send you a copy of the website or provide ftp access so you can access the files. This copy of your website is for your retention.
Are your websites Mobile Friendly?
Yes, we ensure all of our website designs are responsive for a consistent look and feel across tablet, smartphone and desktop.
A responsive website can adapt to the screen size of the device it is displayed on. This makes the website viewable on a smartphone or tablet without taking anything away from the visuals of the site.
For our video showing an example of Responsive Web Design see:
Will my website be Search Engine Friendly?
All our websites are created with search engines in mind and the website design is compliant with search engine guidelines.
Most of our websites run on either WordPress or BigCommerce and these are both great foundations for SEO – allowing you to add your own search engine meta tags to each individual web page if desired.
It is also a good idea for your website to be re-evaluated every now and then as over a period time the search engines do alter their rules and algorithms and you will want to be certain that your website is kept up to date and complies with new rules.
In what format should I supply content and photos for my new website?
It is helpful to us if you are able to provide text and photos in electronic form – for example, the files output by a digital camera and the words in MS word or similar format.
When starting a new project, we normally share a DropBox folder with you and this allows us to share large files easily together.
Just like building a house you need materials, the more photos and text you can provide makes building the website easier for us and results in a better looking site for you.
If you don’t have time to write your own content, we can refer you to a website copywriter.
Will everyone see my website the same?
Your website visitors will see some things differently depending on their browser, screen resolution setting and their individual computer settings and tool bars.
We design websites with that in mind and preview them in several browser types and resolution settings before publishing. Obviously as technology alters then eventually all websites may need re-evaluation.
What can we help you with?
We know everything there is about the web design industry and can provide a complete solution to getting your business online.
Some of our services include:
Why choose Above & Beyond to build your website?
Over 72 Five Star Reviews and counting.
21 Years in business, 600 different projects and over 21 years training in our industry.
No surprises or hidden costs. When we quote a job we stick to our price.
Quick response times to emails and phone calls. We won’t leave you waiting.
You’ll deal with the person working on your website and often speak direct with Damien, the director of the business.
I would like to request a quote
Please leave some details below and we will get back to you with pricing and timeframes.