A first time business owner setting out to build a website has absorbed a lot of myths about the business world. Web developers often take the brunt of this because they work in an extremely important but still relatively young field. In order to avoid the traps of false expectations, you need to understand the four biggest myths surrounding web development experts.
Templates Take Care of the Hardest Part
Which is harder: building a skeleton, or building the flesh that surrounds it? A skeleton is pretty straight forward, but the meat of the body requires intricate organs, blood vessels, muscles, fats, everything that holds your body together and makes it run. That’s what a web development expert sees when they look at a template: a skeleton. It is the foundation on which they can build the best and brightest custom storefront possible. This is great to have, and it does make everything easier. But it’s not the hardest part, and the rest of the work is still labor intensive and difficult.
Spec Work Should Be Free
Let’s say that your store is going to sell custom tee shirts. A man walks in (or emails you, since the store is online) and he asks if he can have you design a shirt for him, but he doesn’t want to pay you. You explain that you’re a custom tee shirt store, designing shirts is what you do for money. It’s how you pay your bills. So he tells you he doesn’t for sure want to buy a tee shirt from you; he’s put the word out with a couple other custom shirt stores. But he’s going to have a big order for the store he likes best.
Asking a web designed for free speculation is the much the same. You’ll get much better results when you acknowledge that this is their livelihood as much as your storefront is going to be yours.
It's Easy to Build a Site
Diythemes.com lists, “This is so easy, I could just do it myself, but…” as the number one thing you shouldn’t say to web designers. Building a storefront only looks easy when you have a professional there to do the work. A custom storefront is a lot of time and work; the effort is extreme, and they make it look easy when they show you the results because that’s what professionals do. There’s an idea that web development is just picking out colors and waving a mouse around. This is a common but puzzling myth, as it has no basis in reality.
Websites Should Look Like Print Media
There’s a trend among business that have had great success with print media to demand a similar style for their online work. The truth is that these media types have the same style points in common (color, text, images), but they don’t need to display them the same way. An interesting print brochure would make a terrible web page, just as a well done website would make a terrible brochure. You should not be designing your storefront like it’s a catalogue. If you can accept that your print media was successful because you utilized the media to its full potential and then turn that same philosophy to the Internet storefront, you and your expert web development team will get along very well indeed.
With your attic clear of myth cob webs, you’ll be able to tackle your project with your team in full harmony. The results you’ll see will be realistic, and not tainted with the perplexing sneer that big business often takes to web development.