How To Choose A Web Designer: Part 1

Client’s Website Development Bill of Rights

This is the first in a series of articles we’ll be writing about how to choose the right website developer or web designer for your project. It can be an overwhelming process to undertake a website development, and there are seemingly a million decisions big and small that go into building a website. But one of the most critical decisions is deciding who you hire to actual build your website. We recommend taking your time on this decision and looking more than just the price point.

In this series of articles, we’ll use the terms “website developer” and “website designer” interchangeably, but note that these titles could technically apply to 2 different people at a single website development company, or you could be dealing with a single individual who claims both these titles.

We hope these articles will give you a starting point and some guidelines in the process. Below is what we at iCandy Graphics & Web Design believe are your rights as a client when undergoing a website development.

We’ve all heard the horror stories. You paid good money to have a developer make a website for you, you want make changes to it, they become unresponsive and you are stuck. It is an incredibly sad situation that there are some web developers out there who are holding their clients’ websites hostage. It’s very important for you to be in control of your website, so that if you become unhappy with your developer or if they raise their maintenance prices or drop off the face of the planet, you don’t have to start from scratch.

Even if you don’t understand exactly what a domain is or why you need access to it, asking your potential web designer the right questions up front will make sure you have a successful experience and that you have control of your website. Even if you have known your website designer for 10 years, it’s important that you have access to all the accounts and files that make up your website should something happen to your designer or should that relationship sour.

With that said, to use this client’s bill of rights in your vetting process, just turn these into questions for the companies you are interviewing. For example #1 as a question would be “Will I be able to control my website domain and access the registrar’s account?”


Client’s Bill of Rights of Website Development

  1. I have the right to control my website domain and be able to access the registrar’s account?
  2. I have the right to control my own website hosting via cPanel (a web based control panel) or FTP (file transfer protocol).
  3. If I have a content management system, I have the right to log in with full administrator access, controlling other user access on the site.
  4. I have the right to update my website content without needing help from an outside agency.
  5. I have the right to access my Google Analytics account.
  6. I have the right to be educated how to use my website and other reporting tools.
  7. I have the right to get honest and accurate bids and to be notified if something is beyond the scope of the original bid before prior to the work being done so I can assess the costs and benefits.
  8. I have the right to expect that the development company will understand my business and my overall marketing strategy and incorporate that knowledge into every decision so that I get the most out of my money.
  9. I have the right to understand the website development process in plain language as much as possible and not be overwhelmed with technical jargon that limits my understanding of my decisions.
  10. I have the right to have a website developed using industry standards and best practices.
  11. I have the right for my projects to be delivered on time when I fulfill my own project responsibilities in a timely fashion.
  12. If there are trends or changes in technology that affect my website, I have the right to be notified and advised as to the appropriate course of action.

Stay tuned for more parts in this series How To Choose A Web Developer! Subscribe to our blog