It can be a daunting task to choose a blog designer. Sometimes you are referred by a friend. Other times you come across a website you love and want the designer they had. Yet on other occasions you find different elements of blogs you like that you want pieced together to make your very own.
Today I want to share how to choose a blog designer. It can be overwhelming, but I’m hoping this list will help make your experience easier than my first one was!
- Make a list of blogs you like. Start looking at blogs. Keep tracks of which ones you like and what you like about them. Don’t go crazy here, but do know what your style is. I had about three different blogs that I built this site around, but I was inspired by at least a dozen.
- Draw out what you want. Yes, literally draw out a rough sketch of what you want your blog to look like. It doesn’t have to be pretty, but it will help you visualize where everything is going and realize if you’re expecting too much or if all the elements you want will be too crowded. It also makes communicating with your blog designer much easier. 🙂
- Start looking for a designer. You’ve probably already been doing this a little bit since step #1, but this is where you get serious. Start looking at the bottom of blogs you like. Many times they have links to their designers. Some are going to be out of your price range, but that helps narrow it down quickly. Ask your friends who designed their blog. Notice I said friends and not random acquaintances that you happen to be Facebook friends with.
- Really start looking at web designers. They typically have websites, so start looking to see the types of designs they have done in the past. Keep in mind they can edit what gets put online. They might have glowing reviews and 3-4 great designs, but is that the entire picture? They don’t have to post bad reviews on their own website. This is probably the most important thing to remember when how to choose a blog designer so you don’t get scammed!
- Contact designers. Reach out to the #1 and #2 blog designer on your list. See when their next availability is. Send them examples of what you want done based on the sketch you created in #2. Tell them the blogs you like. Find out how their process works. A good designer is going to give you quite a questionnaire to fill out. It will include everything from choosing a color palette to picking colors and fonts. It’s overwhelming, but this ensures you will be happy with the final result. Also look into their refund policy.
- Choose a designer. Find out if one designer cannot do certain features you want. If they can’t, determine whether that’s a deal breaker for you. If it is – move on. If it’s not, then you may go with them in the end. If a designer says they have not done something in the past but they’re willing to learn, decide if you are willing to be their guinea pig. See if they will offer a discount if they are unable to do that part of the design.
- Let the fun begin. Fill out that questionnaire. Pick fonts. Choose colors. Let your designer know all about what inspires you in other sites and what your style is!
- Correspond throughout the process. Keep lines of communication open with your designer, but also respect that they may have certain working hours and limits.
- Have patience. Blog designs take awhile. You may want to ask upfront how long the design process will take. From the first day I e-mailed the designer of this blog until the day the site was really “live” and the way I wanted it took nearly a month. I’ve heard of it sometimes taking longer. If you love the final design, it’s well worth the wait!
- Deal with any issues. Things may come up during the process. Deal with them and keep trucking along. Or – if you’re really that unhappy with how things are going – get out of it. I had a friend who left $400 on the table because she was unhappy with the preview of a design and she and the designer could not see eye to eye. Sad? Yes! But a lesson that she learned a great deal from (and I’m hoping you can too!).
- Enjoy your new site design! You’ve gone through a lot of work to get to this point! Now sit back and enjoy it. 🙂