You want to hire a web design agency but are worried that the final product won’t reflect the aesthetic you want. That’s a legitimate concern. If you are unclear about the design aesthetic you want or don’t communicate it clearly, the website you get may not align with your vision or branding. This walk-through of the design process can help ensure that your design vision is delivered.
Clarifying Your Vision
Before anything else, you must have a clear idea of what you want your website to look like. If your business has been around for a while, you’ve probably established its visual branding.
Visual branding encompasses the logo, color schemes, typography, and distinct visual elements that distinguish your company from others. In most cases, your website aesthetic is going to be largely influenced by that.
If you are starting from scratch, then you’ll need to formalize your visual branding with brand guidelines. After all, you want your web design to be something that visitors remember and associate with your company.
A web design agency can help with this. Start by researching other websites, landing pages, and blogs to get an idea of what appeals to you and why.
However, remember that branding influences aesthetics; it isn’t synonymous with it. There are other things to consider, such as layout, navigation, use of visuals, and interactive features. All of these things combine to create a strong visual impact.
Now that you know what you want, or at least have an idea, you can communicate that to the design agency. You can help them turn your vision into reality by letting them know:
- Your overall goals for your website
- What you are trying to accomplish with this specific project
- The functions you want available to users
- Your target audience/user personas
This information will influence the functionality of your website. That’s something that must work with your desired aesthetic.
You don’t have to be a graphic or web design professional to have creative input into your website. If you communicate what you like and dislike, a good designer should be able to work from that information.
Start with some of the websites you’ve researched. Share these with the design agency and indicate what you find appealing or unappealing and why. List the functions and visual features you’d like to incorporate into your web pages if possible. It also helps if you can describe where you envision things.
Your creative brief should also contain the images you want the designer to use. If you have a visual assets library, that can be extremely valuable here. Your designer will be able to help maintain your branding by using fonts, color schemes, and images from that library.
If you don’t have an assets library or it’s a bit sparse, you can also share stock images and examples. This sharing will give your designer a good idea of your design aesthetic and some inspiration to work from.
Stating Expectations from the Start
The process of setting expectations for your project will involve both your team and the design agency. It should start with mutual respect for the knowledge and contributions that each side brings to the table.
As the client, you know your business, industry, customer base, and branding. You also know your products and services and how you want to present those on your website.
In terms of aesthetics, you have a firm idea of the look and experience you want your site to offer. You also know what you want visitors to be able to do on your website, whether that be downloading software, watching videos, purchasing products, or something else.
At the same time, the web design agency brings other knowledge and experience. Their designers have a lot of valuable know-how about the latest web design trends, how people interact with websites, what makes sites perform better, where various features may enhance website experience, and where they detract from it.
Ideally, by understanding everybody's roles and capabilities, you'll be able to work with your web design agency to set expectations that respect your goals and aesthetic vision while also ensuring you get the most value out of the designer’s expertise.
Find a Web Design Agency You Can Trust
The best way to ensure your aesthetic vision for your site is realized is to connect with an agency you can trust. Look for an agency that values client input and encourages communication throughout the process.