What Makes a Customer a Good Customer? by Kevin Serwatowski

Save money, time, and headaches by working smart with your Web designer.
Preparing content
In 99% of the cases where a website takes two to three times as long as it should it is because of content. It may not be clear enough. It may not flow well. The useful information may be buried in jargon that the unfamiliar customer may not understand. The rule in website design is: “Don’t make me think.”
Content is king. Prepare the content and message that you want to provide your customers with up front. Read it all aloud before sending onward. If it sounds clumsy at all, improve it. If in doubt, consult with a professional copywriter who knows SEO. Make sure you are writing the content for human beings and not search engines.
Allow creative freedom
Every customer should know what they want up front. Selecting items from other sites (even competitors) can help your designer visualize what you like about other sites to simulate into your site. However, allowing your digital consultant and web designer a little bit of creative freedom is always the best way to proceed. Listen to their advice and be open to new ideas regarding design and layout.
However, if there is something that isn’t quite right to you, something that you’re not completely comfortable with, something you’re not really relaxed about, address it and work to make it better. Other customers may have the same reactions.
Quick feedback
During the website building process your web designer will need feedback on multiple items. It is good to provide that feedback within one to two days so he or she can finish the project in a timely manner.
Give your designer as detailed an idea as possible of the experience you are trying to create based on the customer’s expectations. Always keep the customer in mind.
Upfront Expectations
Set expectations that are reasonable and be ready to alter expectations based on the advice from your digital consultant. Making a 30-60-90 day plan that allows flexibility on a rolling basis is a good way to keep you on track. Understanding what is possible to achieve in the short term and long term is a key to success.
Set the right budget
Sure, today there are commercials about free websites, and $9.99 websites, etc. However, those are for a certain market.
There’s a huge difference between a canned, cookie-cutter website, on a propitiatory and limited platform, versus a custom, flexible website that can be easily updated and expanded upon. Your budget needs to be relative to what you want to receive based on estimates from experienced designers who can show you examples of what they can do for similar prices.
Knowledge is your friend. If you have a limited budget, approach designers with the dollar amount range you can work within and ask what they can suggest for you.

Kevin Serwatowski is a digital marketing consultant in Detroit, MI and services clients nationwide. http://www.mvmtconsulting.com/
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