Custom Web Design as a Collaboration
There are two types of people in the world. Those who like to sit back once they have engaged a creative service (like hairdressing, tattooing ... and web design) and let the artists do what they do best. The other type of person likes to be a lot more involved in the creative process, shaping a vision of the end goal, suggesting changes, offering tools and being right there for feedback at each stage of the process.
Guess who Web Designers Like Better?
Well, we love all of you! But to be honest, the customers who usually get the most satisfaction out of their custom web design projects are those who take an active role in the creative process. Today we look at the reasons why custom web design should be carried out as a collaboration between the client and the creative team, and the best ways to approach the relationship.
The Second Date
Your 'first date' with a custom web design team is equivalent to your discovery of their website or a chat on the phone with the designer who would be managing your project. You can usually tell at the initial meeting if the firm's approach suits your business's approach, just as you can feel chemistry on a first date. Part of making an effective collaboration is picking the web design team that gives you good vibrations.
The Initial Design Brief
It is a poor web design firm indeed that doesn't make the minimum effort at collaboration with customers - the design brief. A design brief is always the basis for a successful project - it aims to find out what the customer will be using their website for, what elements need to be included, what 'feel' they are hoping for in the site (usually on a continuum from corporate to quirky), and some examples of other sites that exhibit what they feel is good web design. Well done, this begins the journey of making a beautiful website together!
There are some materials for the website design which only you will be able to provide, with the most common of these being website copy, product photography, technical specifications and specialist documents. Although you may outsource copywriting or document production, it is important that you collaborate with your website design team as to the requirements for each. For example, some pages may not work well with huge amounts of text. Photos that are provided by you may need to be a certain resolution to be usable. Don't be afraid to ask questions about requirements!
Know What is Possible With a Website
It can help, quite a lot, for web design clients to know what is possible within the field. There's nothing more difficult than trying to reconcile a customer's preferences that are at odds with best practices. Of course, we will always explain the rationale behind our choices whenever you want to know more.
Ask Questions, Then Be Decisive
Changes are often more difficult to implement than they look on the surface. Decisiveness is a fantastic quality to have for collaborating with a web design team.
Be Prepared to Give Feedback
Successful collaboration isn't just about the initial information exchange, but is an ongoing process that needs your feedback!