Unfortunately, there comes a time where you may have to find a new web development agency. Maybe the relationship with your incumbent agency is tired and it’s time to try a new approach, or you’re concerned they may cease providing your services and you could be left without support. Or perhaps you simply want to build a new website.
Whether you’re starting from scratch or building upon your existing site, web projects are time-consuming and often expensive. If you already have an existing website that you’ve invested time, money and effort into building, how do you switch to a new agency without risking everything you’ve been working towards? The complexities and challenges of deciding which web agency to switch to shouldn’t hold you back. Completing thorough research and equipping yourself with relevant knowledge can make the process less stressful, while also helping you make the right agency choice for your business. Keep reading to find out what you should consider.
1) Look for a market leader
Ensure your next agency is an expert in their platform(s) of choice. One thing that will make the choice significantly easier, is the peace of mind that your new agency really knows what they’re doing with the proposed CMS platform.
It’s worth doing your research to understand which platform your potential agency specialises in, see what their qualifications are and their experience working with that platform. For example, relevant certifications and a close working relationship with the vendor showcases expertise and specialism. These factors should be seen as credibility stamps, highlighting the agency’s investment to keep up to date with technology and continuously improve their employees’ skills and knowledge.
We’re experts in both Kentico Xperience and Umbraco. It is this choice to specialise in just two systems that means we can keep pace with advancements, ensuring your business benefits from the latest in web design and development.
2) Research experience, past work and case studies
Before diving into a partnership with the agency, you should research their portfolio of work. Who have they worked with? What kind of sectors are they known in? What type of projects have they undertaken? What results have they achieved?
All agencies should have a featured case studies page on their website. Take the time to explore some of their previous projects and read testimonials to understand their quality of work, areas of expertise, partnerships and successes. Finding an agency who is trusted by high-profile brands is a good sign, but also consider their experience with your specific requirements. Often agencies have delivered similar requirements in other sectors and this should also be regarded as highly as experience in your sector.
3) Do they have proven processes?
You may be concerned that switching agencies will cause issues for your customers, that your site won’t work, or that the new agency will make it difficult for the website to be managed. But a good agency will have the processes in place to make the switch as seamless as possible with no disruption to everyday business. Even if you decide your website needs to be replatformed to a new CMS, the migration process should be designed to create minimal disruption to your operations.
For new projects, a clear delivery process is just as important. Not only does a robust process help with reducing budget and timescale overruns, but - more importantly – it provides a level of quality assurance for all aspects of your discovery and development.
When researching a prospective agency, ask them about their approach to handling different web projects. You will be able to gain an understanding of the processes they have in place, how robust they are and how this mitigates risk for your business. It’s advisable to seek assurances around these factors, take the opportunity to understand how an agency would work with you on your migration or new build project.
4) Can they provide the right support?
One of the primary reasons businesses choose to switch agency is because they’re dissatisfied with the level of support they’re currently being offered. Alongside having in-depth knowledge of your CMS and website, having a dedicated support infrastructure in place ensures an end-to-end service and a fast and efficient response time.
When researching agencies, take a look at their range of support options and whether these can be tailored to your business objectives and budget. For example, we offer a robust and proactive support desk system to provide ongoing website development and maintenance. Ask about the differences between their support and retainer offerings and whether any minimum spend requirements are in place. You may also consider the agency’s capacity for ad-hoc work and projects outside of retainers and support agreements.
5) Look for longevity
Taking over the management of a website or launching one from scratch is just the start. Once you are live with a new agency, that’s where the real work begins. A proactive web agency will help you continue making iterative improvements that maximise your website’s potential.
When looking for an agency, you’ll likely be looking for a long-term, stable partner too – no one wants to go through this process more than necessary! Look for an agency with a reputation for building successful, long-standing partnerships. Do your research to understand the financial security of prospective agencies, whether they are independent or backed by a large Group, and whether you’re confident they will be able to support you well into the future.
With over 20 years’ experience building websites, we know how to work with businesses to create the optimum web solution for your needs. Alongside building fantastic new sites, many of our clients have approached us from their incumbent agency including Hodder Education and Ongo. Looking for a fresh relationship with their agency; they researched the top providers in the UK before selecting us. Working solely with Kentico and Umbraco at the top level, our in-house team of developers are experts in these systems, receiving regular training to ensure we’re always up to speed and fully certified.
Plus, we’re all about building long-term relationships as shown by our long-standing clients such as Ryobi, who we continue to support over years of working together. With an iterative improvement approach to all our projects, we can ensure our work centres around constantly bettering your website.
Committing to a partnership with a new agency can feel like taking a step in the dark. But, with comprehensive research and asking the right questions, you can choose the agency that is the perfect fit for your objectives. Our in-house team of account managers, developers, creatives, testers and support desk are on-hand to guide you through every stage of your project. If you’re looking for a new agency, contact the team to find out more about our processes and whether NetConstruct could be the right fit for your business.