Getting a new website?

We found this interesting article on LinkedIn

If you’re planning on launching or redeveloping your website in the near future, don’t be fooled — there’s a lot more to consider than simply the layout and price.

First, it’s important to know that a website isn’t a product, it’s a service. The woes of Web development stem from this … and the fact that it’s is a fairly new industry with very little standards doesn’t help, either.

Not only is it challenging to understand what exactly you’re buying, it can also be hard to find the right Web development agency to meet your specific needs. This may lead to unrealistic expectations, leaving the entire website development process to be defined by the client instead of being generated from a joint decision between the agency and the client.

Think of it this way: Getting a new website isn’t like getting a roof for your home. The process goes beyond figuring how much space you need to cover and ordering the right type of materials. During the website building process, no website or requirement is quite like the other. This makes the process for buying a website and working with a Web marketing agency anything but standardized.

Instead of simply asking for a price quote and running with it, follow these steps for a better website development process:

1. Establish your goals. How will you measure success of the website project? What experience do you want to give your user? How can you make each website visit a success? Too many companies jump into the building process focused on website features and layout. You should instead be focused on what you’d to accomplish from a business perspective.

2. Pick a price range. By establishing clear business objectives and a price range, you’re ensuring you will get your money’s worth for the website that’s created. The agency will lay out the options that are the best match for your business needs, as well as your price range. A price point will be finalized through this, so you know where your money is being spent.

3. Allow your agency make suggestions for meeting your objectives. To speed up the development process, allow the agency to come up with their own ideas for meeting your business objectives. It will be your job to come up with feedback for their suggested ideas, but be sure to keep your critique at “business level” and don’t key in on specific features.

4. Let your agency set your end figure. While this may be hard to swallow at first, the best question to ask your potential Web agency is not how much the website will cost, but how their team will work with you to achieve your business objectives. Confide in their expertise and ability to meet your goals — a figure will be born from this.

Take the real estate industry: Similar to the website build process, you’d never ask a real estate agent, “I like the building at 5000 Sunset Boulevard. How much would it cost for the same building?”

The real estate agent doesn’t know what your goal is for the building or the logistics of the structure, like the number of floors, office sizes, or necessary materials. Real estate building plans, just like website building plans, involve a lot of questions — and the answers often take time.

Most importantly, the website development process involves trust. You must trust the agency you’ve chosen is going to accommodate you to the best of their ability and knowledge, while also meeting your price requirements.

Article written by Ilya Pozin: Founder of Ciplex. Columnist for Inc, Forbes & LinkedIn. Gadget lover, investor, mentor, husband, father, and ’30 Under 30′ entrepreneur.