When we first started BMON, we offered website building, and I’m still quite proud of the projects on which we worked. Nearly all are still in service, five or six years later. While the graphic design on our sites was not groundbreaking, it did a decent job. More importantly, however, we had the sites built around simplicity and end-user requirements. We ensured that the owners could add content regularly, and that it would be easily accessible. Finally, we got all the right measurement systems set up, and ensured the transition from the previous site was correct. These have been the critical factors in the longevity of the designs.
We decided to move away from offering website design as a service because of the increasing sophistication being asked for – commendably – by clients. This included personalisation of content, responsive design, e-commerce and much more. Such demands require programming specialists as much as they do web designers from a graphic arts background, and can be best served by a larger team. There are some great web design agencies out there, and I’ve been impressed by several used by our advertising clients in the past year or so.
However, what we still do is to support our advertising clients in the design and launch of a new website, working alongside the website design agency. Normally we can offer our advice for free, as part of the comprehensive online marketing support service we provide to any existing clients. We can help you work up a proper brief for the agency, which doesn’t leave them to do the things they aren’t geared up to do; we can monitor the work they’re doing; and we can ensure that the agency doesn’t forget things like redirecting the old site and killing your ranking in Google (sadly, this happens all the time).
Too often, we talk to prospective clients who say: “We’d like to start a Google AdWords campaign with BMON, but we’re going to leave it until we have our new website launches, later in the year”. Sure enough, this does end up taking place as they planned, but we then spend our first few months with the client helping them salvage a botched new website, rather than advising them on getting the site right first time.