Is Your Web Developer a Cowboy?

What do you think of your web developer?

Over the last few years we have quietly, but at every opportunity, been asking this question to business owners, marketing directors and executives responsible for their company website whether for commissioning, developing or maintaining their online presence. We also asked if they were happy with the website that the developer had provided, or if they thought it was bringing tangible benefit to their business. The responses were sharply divided. It seems that the businesses’ experience of Web developers is like Marmite: you either love them or hate them.

Shockingly, over 80% of respondents reported a ‘poor’ or ‘very poor’ experience of working with a website developer or designer. Many made comments that were very uncomplimentary toward their web developers. Some stated that they felt they had been, “Taken for a ride,” by those who had either baffled them with technology and jargon, or had – deliberately or otherwise – raised their expectations beyond what was feasible with the investment they were making. One had invested tens of thousands with a web development company to build an online presence for their business and now has a website that not only makes no contribution to any business objective, neither has it produced a single enquiry. The overall impression that we gained from our research to date and a term used by more than one unhappy respondent was that web developers are: “A load of cowboys.”

These poor experiences have a knock-on effect, not just for those who have been unhappy with their outcomes but for the web development and internet marketing industries as a whole. It results in an increased conviction that all web developers were likely to be the same, and that there was no-one out there who could be trusted. In addition, the inclination to invest any further resources and capital on online promotion of their business was greatly reduced. “We’ve done that and it didn’t work,” was a common response.

What do the web developers have to say?

To balance the picture we also surveyed web developers and web design companies to see if we could identify what had created this tale of woe from businesses.

Many were unaware of the situation and some were quite frank in their derision of business owners. Common responses included

  • “They don’t know what they are doing,”
  • “We’re not telepathic you know!”
  • “They don’t understand what is involved.”
  • “We never get the right information.”
  • “They keep changing their minds, often before the previous changes are completed.”

Each side seemed to blame the other for what might be interpreted as a straightforward breakdown in communication.

So why does this happen? There are no doubt numerous reasons, but focusing on the communication issue, we asked the web developers if they ever asked for, or received, a web design brief from their clients. The majority response was: “Rarely!” The design briefs received mostly consisted of a single page of vague information that lacked the detail and specifics required. Although they usually included requests for things that far exceeded the budget or amount the business owner was willing to spend and were full of wish lists and ‘good’ ideas that require bespoke development or even new technology (for the words ‘bespoke’ and ‘new’, read – interchangeably – ‘difficult’ and ‘expensive’)!

So whose job is it?

Isn’t it part of the web developers’ job to write the brief? Actually, no it isn’t, it is the responsibility of the business owner to communicate their requirements, their goals, their current situation and future plans. After all, as more than one developer pointed out, “We’re are not telepathic you know!”

In addition, the pressure of trying to keep a small web development business running (let alone in profit) in this ever increasingly competitive industry means that there is no time or other resources to be teaching the business owner how to write a web design brief, even though it would create a better outcome for everyone. For the majority of situations, there is often no clear or effective communication, more a case of asking questions of the business owner – which they often don’t understand clearly, which is no-ones fault – to get some sort of outline and then on with the job of designing and building the website.

Our experience – Web developer

Our experience indicates that the majority of web developers really want to do the best job they can for their clients.

They have the skills and knowledge to build websites that could work for their clients’ businesses. They have the equipment and resources to carry out the work. We also observe however that there are web developers who mistake the functionality of the software that they use for their own creative skills. Ultimately over a period of more than a decade we have encountered very few who would deliberately, “Take their client for a ride,” as some businesses have claimed.

Our experience – Businesses

Websites for businesses create a particular quandary for the business owner, manager or similar. There seems to be a huge barrier of technology and jargon to break through to be able to even speak the same language as the web development world. In addition, it is very difficult for anyone without extended experience to make any kind of value judgement about what is good or bad. Consider a different situation: whether you eat in a restaurant often or not, because you do eat every day, if you go into a restaurant, it is possible to make some kind of judgement as to whether you had a good experience, whether the food was good, whether the service was acceptable or excellent. Of course this is subjective to your own preferences and experiences, but at least you understand what a restaurant is, what it is supposed to do or be for and so on.

In our survey we ask a further question of businesses: “What is your website for, why did you get a website?” Very few offered any kind of clear response, the most common being: “Because we needed a website,” or “Because our competitors had one.” We also hear: “To generate sales/leads/enquiries etc.” quite often, which is at least focused on business, but is nowhere near specific enough to be called an objective.

If it is not common for businesses to even understand what the website is for, or why they are getting one developed, how can it be possible for them to make a judgment on what is good or bad, other than it produces no results. Even this judgement requires something to measure the results – or lack thereof – against.

Management by abdication

In so many cases the business abdicates responsibility for the website to a web developer in the mistaken belief that ‘they know best’. While the web developer knows about websites, they are likely to know little or nothing about the client’s business and even less about the customers who will use the website. Together with the lack of communication between the web developer and the business owner it is not difficult to see why so many websites are poorly designed, deliver bad user experiences and ultimately poor or no results for the business.

Is there a solution

The first step to a solution is to address the communication problem. It is clear that there must be effective communication and the first stage of this would normally take the form of a clear and concise website design brief.

The website design brief

The last time we reported on web design briefs we had surveyed 57 web development companies, further surveying has now brought this number to nearly 100. While everyone does it slightly differently, they all had information requirements in common.

Remember that:

  • The document needs to be clear and concise,
  • The document is prepared for someone outside your business who doesn’t necessarily know anything about your business or industry. Even if they claim to have worked in your industry before, unless they are specialists, then you should assume nothing.

Its purpose is to state clearly your requirements, including:

  • A profile of your business, its existing image, brand and products or other offerings including future plans
  • The objectives of the site – stated clearly in terms that can be measured, not woolly ‘to generate enquiries’ or similar, think detail and be specific.
  • The target market – who will be the users of the site, what will be their requirements?
  • Functionality requirements – often expressed as an outline, and as a business owner you may not be able to describe this well, but for example, do you require online payments and if so are you already accepting credit cards in your business. – remember, adding functionality usually increases cost far more than increasing the number of pages in the site.
  • The scale and scope of the development project – how big, how many pages, who will provide what and so on.
  • What are the project constraints, budget, timescale etc.

This document is not a wish list (although you could include things that you would like to do as well as but not instead of the above), it is the document that the developer works to and effectively forms part of your contract with them and is therefore subject to discussion and revision before being finalised.

In conclusion

The commissioning of a website is a much bigger project than appears at the beginning. Websites are not ‘job-and-finish’ projects. You need to form a good relationship with your web developer because you will be working with them for a long time, and the first step to a successful relationship is sorting out the communication. It is your business, if you have articulated clearly what you want, why your business needs it, and provided all the information the developer requires including realistic expectations, budgets and timescales then if it isn’t delivered to the brief then you can blame the web developer. Otherwise accept that it is your problem, not their fault that they are not telepathic.

Furthermore, you need to take responsibility for the project, but also recognise that the development of a website is a team game, not something to be simply handed over and then moaned about when it was not quite what you were thinking of.

Last word

If you are serious about selling online or using the internet to promote your business it is important to recognise that you need to make a considerable investment of time and effort or you might as well take your money and simply thrown up in the air!

Convert PSD to Joomla Theme and Template for Complete Web Development Support

It is believed that converting PSD to Joomla theme/template is the best proven option for complete web development support. Joomla theme/template integration and customization relatively impart assistance in mounting fully accessible web portal bundled with great functionalities. By converting PSD format based layered image file into Joomla theme/template, an individual can get aesthetic and eye-catching website successfully running over the net.

Understanding the importance of open source Joomla CMS:

The most popular award-winning Content Management System Joomla plays very significant role in addressing the ever-growing need of fast content publishing on web and helps in updating the website with fresh content constantly. This open source Joomla is a unique CMS bundled with set of amazing features and its extensibility that gear to offer best accessibility along with complete web development support. This easy-to-use web-based solution allow to create, manage, publish and edit content without any HTML programming skill.

How PSD to Joomla conversion brings complete web development support?

Normally, Adobe Photoshop software is used for creating an initial design in PSD format needed to upload in order to launch a website. However, PSD based image files are not compatible on web browsers and therefore, PSD design converted into Joomla theme/template to make a web portal live. However, the process of PSD format based layered image file into Joomla theme/template is quite tough and tricky.

By converting PSD files into Joomla, one can experience great web development support without any technical programming skills. By using Joomla theme/template, one can give a consistent look to the whole website and hereby, trim down his development work up to great extent. An individual can add, edit, manage and publish content with the WYSIWYG editor. interestingly, one can add and modify new pages by using this open source CMS.

A Joomla powered web portal comprises:

  • Built-in user management feature
  • Media Manager for easily managing media files or folders
  • Multi-lingual support. Thanks to its built-in language manager.
  • Banner Manager for easy set up of banners on website
  • Search option helps to navigate users
  • WYSIWYG editor
  • Syndication and Newsfeed Management
  • Built-in help section

We all know that great website needs outstanding accessibility as well as usability and Joomla is one complete Content Management System that offer advanced functionalities with web development support. At this end, PSD to Joomla conversion is considered complete web solution gear to provide great web development support.

Hire ASP NET Developer For a Complete Web Development Solution at Affordable Cost

ASP.NET is a scripting language and web application framework. ASP.NET developers are in full demand because of their advantages in the website development. It is obvious that the demand for them is increasing which is higher than other. It is used to develop dynamic and professional websites which are of high quality and eye-catching towards the visitors. It can also be used for the development of different web applications and web related services that are in great demand. ASP.NET programming language is known for features of it such as.NET development, data access, communication of network, numeric algorithms, connectivity of database and many others for the development of extreme quality web applications, web pages and many other web services.

If you want to have a professional and eye-catching website then you must need a highly qualified and well experienced ASP.NET Developer or ASP.NET programmer which takes your website to the attentive field. It is very beneficial to hire developers because they save your time and money, as they are available at affordable cost, and you can pay attention into your business more. They make you free from the website development area from their effective and efficient work. If you want to get your project done with quality soon then you can hire full-time ASP.NET developers and programmers which will give you the most quality-based and professional web development.

ASP.NET is a programming language with the best features that allows developers to create best, dynamic and professional websites and web applications. Below are some advantages to hire ASP.NET developers, programmers for the development of beautiful websites.

  • First and foremost, it saves time and development cost and resources
  • No need to set infrastructure and that saves again your time and money
  • You can customize your website and make it according to your needs and requirements by hiring programmers
  • They work according to your instruction to make your website better
  • You can get your work done in given time and in your budget
  • They are highly qualified, experienced and expert as per the needs that every website developers must have in their.
  • They provide complete solution for the website and application development and provide you delight

If you are going to hire ASP.NET developer then you can have all these benefits, and I am sure you can be fully satisfied from their services. To have a better website and application, hire ASP.NET programmer to stay in the ground of competition and expand your online business. Get ready to lead from the front through your website developed by ASP.NET developer and programmer and take your business to the top.

Hire Expert Web Developers for the Best Web Development Services

Once in a while we come across a site that makes our jaw drop with awe and other times it takes just a moment to ignore a site completely. It can take weeks for web developers to create a site, but just one moment for the visitors to decide whether or not the site is worth another visit.

A website that has an impressive design and has an efficient sale pitch – all in a very easy and user-friendly packaging makes us want to visit again. That is why it is so important to use expert web developers when creating a website for your business.

The best website development company that you can find will use the latest techniques which would provide you with a great web design. The quality of web application development services varies so be sure to check a few different companies out before deciding.

Benefits of hiring expert web developers for great web development services are:

1. Good website development companies use a strategically planned approach towards your projects so that your effort and time will be used as efficiently as possible.

2. You can hire a dedicated website developer who will be committed to developing your website as per your business requirement.

3. You get expert technical support.

4. These service providers make use of the finest tools and diverse frameworks for developing great websites.

5. By hiring experts you get a website that is professional, goes with your business theme and relates to your target market.

6. An impressive website attracts more visitors, which automatically increases business revenues.

7. An expert website development company makes it easy for your business to reach a wide audience.

8. A website development service that is cost-effective.

Make sure to search the net properly before selecting a web development company so that the company you choose understands the goals that you want to achieve through your website. As they say, “your website is your best investment”, and by hiring a good web development company, you are sure to be as successful as possible online.

Outsourcing Web Development Services for Business Growth and Expansion

A business requires a website where the information about the products and services can be showcased easily to a wider audience. Irrespective of the business sector, an eye-catchy website has a potential to attract and retain visitors for a longer time. With huge competition online, it is important to develop a solution that is not only unique but also robust in nature. Hence, the site must be updated regularly and run smoothly with no glitches.

To help such businesses, there are many website development companies that employ the best web development teams. They use the latest technologies in web development to ensure robustness and scalability in the solution. There are many businesses that opt for outsourcing website development companies to reduce their overall cost and improve efficiency of the solution.

Such website development service providers have a team of web developers, web programmers, web designers and subject experts to provide the best website development services at a considerably lower cost. They offer an array of benefits to the businesses by making their investment on development projects successful. The most significant benefits for outsourcing web development services are mentioned below:

1. Outsourcing enables you to save on money without compromising with the quality, effectiveness and timeliness of the solution.

2. The flexible engagement model allows adhering to strict guidelines to deploy the project without any glitches and delays.

3. Knowledge of latest web development technologies allows them to come up with a proven solution that can ensure complete solution functionality

4. Experience also plays an important role in reducing the time taken on completing the project

5. Regular updates allow the clients to monitor the progress report and can bring immediate changes to the project, whenever required.

6. Expertise of web application developers allows you to strengthen your development solution that may not be possible by taking support of in-house developers.

7. Do not require infrastructure, man-power and maintenance services to keep your IT system up-to-date and running.

All these benefits can only be availed if you have chosen the best web development company. With proper research, it will not be difficult to choose a website development firm. When you start working with one of the top web app development firms, you will automatically see the difference in the output level of your business.

Your business growth will see an upward direction and you will easily be able to expand your services to a wider target area.