Do web designers live in this magical Harry Potter fantasy world of code and magic computer programs where ‘Design Muggles’ think we should get a real job?

For any of our readers that have missed the Harry Potter Phenomenon the last 10 years the term ‘muggle’ refers to a person who is a member of a non-magical community.

We have adapted this slightly so that it is more relevant to our industry to a ‘Design Muggle’, a Design Muggle is simply a person who is a member of the non-design community. Design Muggles are simply ordinary human beings rather than design witches and wizards.

I would like to start this post by saying that not all ‘design muggles’ have this perception of designers, but unfortunately there is a big misconception in the industry that designers have these mystical powers and magic computers that churn out logos and websites at a rate of 10 a minute whilst we sit back drink coffee and rave about the latest technological developments at Apple.

I feel like at this point I should just state, we do not have any magic computers, we don’t have a factory line of logos being churned out but we do get pretty excited about new Apple products.

In this post I will explore how its important to find the right designer for you and your brand, and hopefully I will give you a greater insight into this fantasy world we are believed to live in.

Lets start with the basics

Before engaging with any web design company, be sure you have a clear idea in your head what it is you want to achieve. There could be many reasons for this, here are just a few;

You would like to design and develop a brand new website
You would like to re-develop your existing website
You would like to design and develop an ecommerce website
You would like to develop a bespoke module for your website i.e a booking system for your website
You would like to engage in some online pay per click advertising or SEO (search engine optimisation)

These are just a very general overview of the type of enquiry you may have, but what ever your enquiry may be then be sure that the web design agency you are engaging with have proven experience in what it is you are wanting to do.

If you have a WordPress website has the agency got a portfolio of websites they have designed and developed in WordPress? If you are looking to invest in SEO and PPC do they have case studies they can show you which shows their involvement with PPC campaign management?

Communication is key

Most designers will tell you that the more information that you can provide them will ultimately give them the opportunity to give you a more accurate quote and in the long run will ensure that the price they quote you at the start is the price you pay.

It is not uncommon to get halfway through a web build and the client will turn around and say, oh did I mention we wanted …..(insert something really complex here) which will have not been mentioned in the original brief and ultimately not quoted as work in scope of the initial proposal.

What you want and what you need can be very often two very different things, its very important that you have clear and focused objectives of your project.

Whilst a good designer/developer will take all your ideas and opinions on board it is very important to listen to what they have to say too, a good designer will not be afraid to highlight when they think your opinions are not quite right, and you should be willing to listen and benefit from their experience and knowledge of the online sector.

Things to avoid

Very often we get asked the following types of questions;

“I need a website, how much is that likely to cost me?” or

“If I had the time I would do it myself, but I don’t and all I’m after is a simple logo nothing too complexed how much will it cost?”

The answer is commonly met with “how much??? Really? I might just get my son to do it he’s pretty handy at this kind of stuff”

Would these same people upon receiving a quote for some building work declare,

“really I thought you would just be able to knock something up quite quickly for me? I might just get our son to do it then, he’s pretty good at this stuff and has his own tool box too!!”

I guess not, but this is probably more because builders are qualified, building materials are tangible and designers of course live in this fantasy Harry Potter world that I described earlier.

It’s important to recognize that when you find a designer you like, you should treat what they do and their work with respect. Most designers and agencies will be fully aware of the skills and services they can offer you, and their rate will be reflective of their experience and clearly the scale and complexity of your project.

Professional design agencies can represent a significant investment, so when making your choice of who to work with, do your research, communicate clearly, don’t hesitate to ask questions, and above all find a company that you will want to work with for the significant future.

At Grey Coffee we have an experienced team of web designers, graphic designers, web developers who all take our jobs very seriously. We are a creative design family who love what we do, and are dedicated to developing quality design and development solutions. We do live in a creative world, however I can assure this world is not a fantasy, we do not have magic computers, and we don’t ride broom sticks to get to work.

If you would like to discuss your next project with Grey Coffee do not hesitate to contact us or call us 07872 576803