Finding a Digital Agency: What to Look for in a Web Design or Web Development Agency?

Narrow down your digital agency selection using our handy top ten tips on choosing a web design agency.

1) Check out their own site

Do you like it? Does it sell to you? Does it contain all the types of skills that you’re looking for e.g. good web design, well designed user interface, well built, works on mobiles. Does it impress you?

2) Ask to look at their portfolio

Are the case studies recent? Do you recognize the company names? Do a Google search and check that the companies exist and have the same website that the agency designed. Do you like the website designs they have produced? Ask yourself: Do they represent the company well? Would you use this website? Do they have experience of website design in your field? Do the website’s meet their objectives?

3) Check References

Ask the web agency if they can send you references or testimonials from customers. And when you get these testimonials, make sure you check them out. Call the clients up and check that the testimonials are real.

Finally, ask how long the agency has been running. Age doesn’t always matter, but it does help to identify experience.

4) Capabilities

All agencies will be good at some things and not at others. Find out what they have experience in and what they do well, they often have a bias to one content management technology or another. Often, it’s helpful to get the CV’s of all staff employed. The best agencies will have a balance of online marketing, development and creative. If you have specific requirements – make a list and ask the agency what their proficiency is in the specific skills.

5) Availability – Service levels

Check that they can meet your needs. Quite often companies have a client account team in the UK but their main development team may be based elsewhere. Make sure you get a phone number not just an email address (and not a premium rate number either). Ask the web design agency what the turnaround time is for responding to emails.

6) Resourcing

You want your web design agency to be big enough to ensure that if your account manager is off sick or on holiday your business is not forgotten.

Do you prefer a larger, higher resourced agency or a smaller, more flexible agency? The general rule would be to find a web agency that’s resourced to reflect the size of tasks and projects you require. If you have 1000 employees but your actual marketing and development budget is reasonably low, you are only likely to need an agency of 5-10 employees. If you have 100 employees, but you are heavily reliant on outsourced projects, a larger agency may be more suitable. No one size fits all!

7) Age of agency

Age doesn’t always matter, but in this industry it can be an important factor. The web has seen many changes in a relatively short space of time, if a website design agency has been in business for five or more years it have obviously been managed well. The internet has seen the boom and bust of many company’s; those that live to tell the tale are obviously being run well.

8) Are the staff approachable and professional?

It’s important that you connect with the people managing your account. The best results will be created when you forge a partnership with your web agency.

Do they provide an off the shelf package, or do they tailor their resources to your needs? Do they use a lot of jargon or explain things clearly? Have they provided relevant suggestions suitable for your business? Far too often, company’s try to sell you products that you don’t need and are not tailored to your needs.

9) Check out the agency’s terms and conditions

This is quite important and helps avoid problems further down the line. Here’s some helpful questions to ask:

  • Are there any hidden costs, like set up fees or holding fees?
  • Can you make staged payments for your web project?
  • Are updates and maintenance included in the website design fees?
  • Are bug fixes charged for?
  • Will you get a copy of the source files?
  • Who owns the source code?
  • Who owns copyright of the design?
  • Are the files back-up?
  • Will it work on smartphones?

10) Do they outsource their work?

Check to see if your project will be developed in house or if it will be outsourced. Ask to meet the design or technical team. If work is going to be outsourced, find out where, are you able to contact the team? There are many cases of company’s who have an account management team, and an outsourced development team. It’s common for technical development to be done off shore as resources abroad are cheaper. The problem with this scenario is guaranteeing the quality of the work produced. Does the account management team check the back end code? Does it meet current guidelines and legal requirements? Can they be flexible enough to meet your needs?

Want a web agency with a difference contact Alchemy Interactive

Cheap Prices May Not Be the Best Deal!

The TRUTH is that cheap prices do not necessarily mean the same thing as the best Deal! I am going to give you some good advice about locating a Bed and Breakfast while trying to make sure that you get the best deal.

The best tool that you can have in looking for the best deal is information. So, go online and start shopping around. Check out various Bed and Breakfasts and jot down all of the information that you can obtain.

You need to find out the location of the establishment, what kind of the amenities, type and size of your rooms. You will want to know what is provided with the room. Also find out if there are any available upgrades and if so, the price of them.

I’d also check on room availability. Find out what the rooms cost and check to see what type of seasonal rate differences they might have.

Write down at least five different Inns in the general vicinity that you want to go. Check to see their distances to the various area attractions. You need to understand that the closer you are to attractions could mean a higher price. If you are willing to drive a few extra miles, it could save you plenty.

You might want to consider joining a travel club. Maybe even an auto club or a retirement club because many places offer club discounts. At the very least check their websites to see if they offer any advice.

If you already belong to one of the clubs mentioned above, don’t forget to ask for a discount.

You could narrow down your list depending on whether or not the Bed and Breakfast has romantic atmosphere or how close they are to area attractions. You have to make up your own mind as to what is more important to you.

After completing your list, go back online and check with a few on-line travel forums to read traveler reviews. By now there should have just one Bed And Breakfast standing out above all the rest.

How To Find Snow Blowers – Cheap Prices

Are you looking for snow blowers that have cheap prices? You are not the only one. The idea of pulling out a shovel and working up a sweat shoveling snow does not appeal to many people. Continue reading to find out how to find snow blowers at cheap prices.

Why are snow blowers so popular?

Imagine waking up to a beautiful snow fall. The yard and bushes and driveway are all a pristine white. It is truly beautiful! If only you could stay inside all day and watch the snow fall. But….you need to get out. The sidewalks and driveway need to be shoveled.

Now imagine that you have a blower to use rather than a shovel.

From reading what others say about using a snow blower, these 2 points are made again and again:

  • Easy on the back because you do not have to lift and toss the snow. Many people comment that they no longer have backaches like they used to get after time spent shoveling. Also, because you are not lifting a shovel, many people find this to be a helpful machine.
  • A time saver because it works much more quickly than shoveling. One example is a man who cleared his deck in 10 minutes rather than the 1 1/2 hours it normally takes him with a shovel.

Some things that you want to keep in mind when looking for one to buy is what your need is. You do not need a super large powerful model if you are simply looking to clear off moderate size driveways and sidewalks. Sometimes bigger does not mean better. Also consider how much storage space you have – larger models take more room to store.

So how can you find a snow blower cheap?

Many stores run sales on them, but as one person commented to me – the stores quickly sell out of these when they are on sale. There are also many stores that sell these online. Some run sales and other stores offer coupons, some simply have low prices. Some offer free shipping.

Since the internet is huge, let me offer you a few suggestions to get you started:

  • If you have a favorite brand, go to their website. See if they have any sales. Check out their lower end products.
  • Go to review sites. Not only do they usually offer more information than a salesperson will be able to, they also usually send you to the place to get the best prices for what they are reviewing.
  • There are internet sites like Bizrate which will give you an idea of the price range in which a particular snow blower is being sold.
  • If you are willing to consider used, check Craigslist.

These are just a few options on where to look for cheap snow blowers.