When looking to hire a Web designer in Phoenix, it’s interesting to view the assumptions business owners make when they go looking for a firm to handle their project. In fairness, the Web design industry is a very technical and complicated one. There are many “flavors” of technologies from .PHP, to .ASP or .Net and our favorite ColdFusion or .CFM. Each has their own pros and cons and what works well for one project doesn’t lend itself to another application. But even besides the platform choice different Web designers or maybe more correctly, Web developers each have their own skillset and this is where business owners making decisions about whom to hire really miss the boat. Not everyone that calls themselves a Web designer has the skills to build every project.


Case in point I recently discussed two different projects with two different future site owners that had similar needs. They both needed a database driven site that allows site visitors to create an account, become a “member” of the site, and then enter data that would be stored and then searched by other site visitors. While that sounds simple enough, at least half of the people who claim to be Web designers would struggle with this type of project. They don’t need a Web designer, they need a Web developer! Someone who can write code, add a row in a database on the fly, index and then search it retrieving data based on multiple search criteria input by the site visitor.

This isn’t a project that they typical WordPress jockey will be able to pull off. I know because the first of those two site owners started the project with a Web design company that chose a template for the project and proceeded to remove functions and features from the template trying to get close to what the client wanted. Once the template had been modified the designers told the client ok, we are ready to go give us some data. They had intended to enter all the data themselves into the site! They completely missed the boat not understanding that the site was to have user generated content and needed to have forms for data entry, security checks on that data, and then an interface for other site visitors to search and browse that data. They were Web designers, not Web developers. They could take a template and remove things, but weren’t capable of starting from scratch and building an interactive site that would grow with each new site visitor without the Web designer modifying the site.


In the end the client had to start over hiring a Web developer to properly wire frame and scope the project, confirm with the client that the site met his needs and desires, then worry about the design of the site. After all a pretty site that doesn’t work doesn’t do anybody any good.

So as a business owner, how do you hire the right Web developer for your project? Ask the right questions. Questions such as…

  • Have you built a site that has these features (your requirements) previously and can you show me samples of similar projects?
  • What does the back end administration area look like and how easy will it be for me to maintain the site?
  • Will you provide ongoing support for the site?
  • What will future additions and improvements to the site cost?
  • Who will host the website and be responsible for it staying on-line?
  • What hours is phone support available?
  • How long have you been in business and what does the future look like for your company?

All good questions that should be easily answered by a competent Web design company. When searching for a Phoenix Web Designer be sure to perform due diligence and hire a company that can help you both today and tomorrow as your new website grows and becomes a business resource for your company.


Brian Rideout is the Chief Pixel Pusher of BANG! Web Site Design. A veteran in the industry he’s been helping businesses succeed in the game of Internet Marketing since 1996. He can be reached at in their Phoenix office at 602-427-5626 ext. 101.