Tips for Hiring a Web Developer

Tips for Hiring a Web Developer for your Lingerie Business by Daniel Kraus

“First and foremost make a list of what you need to achieve with your development project.” Daniel Kraus, founder Directory-Sexy.com

by Daniel Kraus

After being a free lance developer for 5+ years I’ve worked with all kinds of clients. From enterprise companies to small independent professionals. One thing that has struck me is that many of my clients weren’t sure of what they needed and wanted in their websites and interfaces. So I thought I would put together a few tips to help anyone seeking a developer to create, augment or add to an existing website. This is not an exhaustive list but should give you a generalized checklist of things and ideas to think about and consider when choosing a developer for you project(s). This article is more of a stream of my consciousness and is pretty much written from the hip, so to speak.

Make a List

First and foremost make a list of what you need to achieve with your development project. This is a list for yourself and can be approached much the same way as buying a home or car. The list should have information like your budget, functionality you would like to have, if the development project includes e-commerce, any time constraints that may apply, if you need content written or graphics designed and how much control you want to have over the website. In addition if you know of a platform you would like to use, like WordPress, Joomla!, or Shopify, make sure that it is included in your list so you can query the developer on their experience with that particular platform along with your other list items. Depending upon what you need and want the developer’s rate for your project will more than likely be adjusted accordingly. Make sure in your list you mark what items are a must and which items can be added at a later date.

Do Your Homework

No matter what the purpose of your development project is, make sure you research it yourself. This is the old CYA routine and it is invaluable in choosing a developer. Look at all the variables that could affect your bottom line. For instance, in developing an e-commerce site not only do you need to pay the developer you will need to pay for the payment gateways, i.e. PayPal, SagePay, Google Checkout etc. All of these, and the countless others, have their own fees and costs associated with them.

Make sure you take this into account when figuring out your budget.

Some platforms offer additional functionality through the use of plugins and modules for things like calculating shipping costs, importing information from other sites and image galleries. These too will more than likely be a cost in addition to the developer’s fee. Be sure to ask your potential developer about these aspects of the project.

After you talk with the developer about your site and the platform you choose, make sure the developer has experience using and developing for that platform. They should be more than willing to point you to websites they’ve developed on that platform. Never just take their word that they’ve built sites on the platform of your choosing. Also be sure to ask about a development server. Many developers, myself included, will use a development server to put your site on while in development to avoid search engine indexing while being built. It’s better to have all your ducks in a row before presenting your new site to the world.

“A good developer will give you honest answers and let you know if they are not sure if a particular aspect is possible”

Q&A

I cannot stress this point enough. Ask everything you can possibly think of that may pertain to your site, your vision and future expansion. A good developer will give you honest answers and let you know if they are not sure if a particular aspect is possible. Even the best developers don’t know everything. On the flip side, the developer should be asking you questions as well so they can gauge what you need, what you want and your vision of the project.

You and the developer will use different terminology to explain the same aspect of a project and it is his/her job to get to the root of what you want. They need to execute what you have in your mind about the project and the only way to do that is through asking questions and explanations. You can think of the developer in this setting as the “doctor”. You have a problem, the need for development services, and they need to diagnose it to give you the best “treatment.” If the developer isn’t asking you any questions that is like a doctor not seeing you and giving you a prescription.

Have Options

This one is probably self explanatory but is worth mentioning. Make sure you talk to multiple developers about your project. Talk to several about what they recommend, can offer and their prices. Making sure to cover all of your list in each conversation. Also make sure you can speak to them on the phone. So much can be lost in emails and text that sometimes you’ll ask a question and get an answer to a different question because the developer may not completely understand what you need. Always take notes during your conversations to compare and evaluate what each developer offers for your project. This way you can determine what your options are and how it fits into your budget and overall vision.

“This isn’t really a tip but more of a bit of an insight. Everyone is human, and no matter how good a developer is sometimes they cannot foresee or know when a bug or glitch will arise.”

No One is Perfect

This isn’t really a tip but more of a bit of an insight. Everyone is human, and no matter how good a developer is sometimes they cannot foresee or know when a bug or glitch will arise. I’ve worked on a few projects where for no good reason functionality that worked in the past no longer did and forced me to switch gears part way through the project. I felt horrible on every occasion as I felt I was letting my client down. Sometimes these bugs make the project longer, more time consuming and a bit stressful. Just keep in mind that some things are out of the control of you and your developer and try not to take it out on them. A good developer will feel worse about it than you do.

In Conclusion…

By taking these few tips into consideration when you are looking for a developer you will have a better understanding of what you want, what your options are and how much it will cost. The most important aspect of this process is that you are comfortable and confident in the developer’s skills and work ethic. As long as you are sure you made the right choice your project will go smoothly and be fun in the process.

 


 

Daniel Kraus founder and developer of Directory-Sexy.comDaniel Kraus is the founder and creator of Directory-Sexy.com, an online directory for the Lingerie Industry and a freelance web developer who has helped create, develop and maintain websites for Lingerie Businesses. DirectorySexy not only incorporates more information than the average directory, but is highly active within multiple social networks which provides a wider reach to any company listed in any current or future directory. New features are added regularly to the site creating a resource for intimate apparel consumers, retailers and designers like no other.

 

2 Comments on “Tips for Hiring a Web Developer

  1. Treacle says:

    I wish I had seen this before I moved my site! So much good info here. Great article!

  2. Honey says:

    Great artical very informative, looking for a web developer now will keep your tips in mind.

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