Bush Marketing has been around for 11 years now and in that time we’ve heard more than a few web marketing horror stories. A surprising amount of our clients come to us complaining about their previous web design companies, having endured significant problems, including project delays, poor end products, communication issues, etc. We decided to make a list of the top complaints about web design companies that we have heard through the years!
So let’s note some of these complaints and see if there are any common threads. We have found that these complaints, generally speaking, fall into three different categories.
- Customer service
Without question, customer support and service is the biggest problem of them all. It is the one complaint that we see consistently from our clients that are coming to us from other web design agencies.
Before we get into the complaints themselves, what are some of the main reasons that people have been unhappy with their web design companies?
The Main Complaints
Transactional Nature. First of all, the majority of web design companies are transactional, not relational. That means that when you hire a web design company, they’ll often take the approach of simply asking you, “Okay, what do you want us to make?”, as opposed to discussing the company’s goals and needs and planning for the future.
Communication. This is a creative field and there are so many people with so many ideas where virtually anything is possible. So communication is key in making sure that the client and the web design company are aligned in what they create. A lack of communication not only has the potential to create an end product that not everybody will be happy with, but poor communication also causes people to become resentful and fearful. Silence causes fear and that breaks down relationships.
How To Partner With the Right Web Design Company
If you are beginning a web design project and you’re looking for a company to partner with (and it IS a partnership), you need to be very well prepared to ask them the important questions and make sure that it is a fit for your company.
Have a look at our article about questions to ask a web design company (Part 1, Part 2) before making a decision. Here’s a quick list of questions to ask.
- What is entailed in your web design process?
- How long will the process take?
- Do you have a portfolio?
- Do you have references?
- How do you create your websites?
- What is the main service your company offers?
- Is your process collaborative?
These are just a few of the questions that you’re going to want to ask a company before you work with them. Remember to consider it a long term partnership, not a transaction. Make sure that you check references, read online reviews, and most importantly, review their portfolio to see if their design style matches yours, and if they are qualified to do this level of work.
Here are some of the top complaints that we’ve received from clients coming to us for the first time:
- Company is uncommunicative, slow to respond
- Design looks antiquated
- Company went out of business
- Not capable/experienced
- Overpromised, under-delivered
- Outsourcing design/development overseas
- Won’t allow us to make site changes in house
- Site is slow/technically broken/designed poorly
- Designer vanished
It is critical to think of your partnership with a web design company as a long term relationship. Invest the time to vet a company properly and you will save yourself a great deal of time, money and frustration!
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