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In the last decade, web development companies, both large and small, have chosen to make Austin, Texas, their home. In fact, more are making the move each year. Whether mobile app or web, tech companies in the heart of Texas are world-class. With so much talent, it can be hard to decide on a developer. Read on to discover how to choose the perfect Austin web development company for your business needs.
The Austin Web Development Scene
Much of Austin’s popularity as a tech hub stems from the same roots as its popularity as a travel and business destination. Compared to many other parts of the country with technology-focused economies, Austin enjoys warmer weather for most of the year. It also has a vibrant cultural scene, with excellent food, drink, and live music options. The city offers a plethora of outdoor activities and a lower cost of living when compared to Silicon Valley.
With six universities in the region, Austin boasts a high level of education and a large number of young professionals. Technologically minded millennials and Gen-Yers continue to flock to the city, both to found their own companies and find roles at established companies. This talent pool has created fosters a rich culture that encourages entrepreneurship and innovation within the tech industry.
Because of the large number of tech companies in the city and its surroundings, Austin is also a popular destination for conferences, conventions, and other industry activities. From South by Southwest Interactive to local meetups, these activities provide space for professional development, synergy, and regular updating of skills.
Do Your Research Before Reaching Out
Since it’s a growing center for tech companies, it’s not hard to find high-quality Austin web development companies. With so many options, your biggest challenge will likely be narrowing down your list. So what do you need to know before you start interviewing web developers?
If you’ve never been responsible for hiring a web developer before, make sure to do your research. Start by speaking with colleagues and others who have gone through the experience before. If you can, have someone walk you through the process so you know what to expect.
Before you reach out to anyone, you should have a good idea of what you want the project to accomplish. Start by gathering ideas and requirements from internal stakeholders. A list of “must-haves” will make it easier for you to narrow down your list of possible developers.
Hold some internal brainstorming sessions where you can discuss the following:
- Is this a new website or a redesign?
- Are you selling a product online?
- Are you offering downloads or playing high-quality video?
- Do you need to integrate a particular software?
- Will you also need an app?
You will need to know the answers to these questions before speaking with a potential web development company.
Another good way to get started is to review competitors’ websites. Are there functions or designs that you like or dislike? How do you think you could incorporate those ideas or improve upon them? You can also check out the web developer that created their site.
How to Narrow Down the List of Austin Web Development Companies
Because of the talent available, selecting an Austin web development can feel overwhelming. Luckily, you aren’t the first to go through this process. Read on for a few ways to narrow down the list sensibly.
Because of Austin’s fame as a tech hub, it is easy to find comprehensive, well-performed evaluations and comparisons of web developers in the region. “Best of” lists like Digital.com can help you navigate a large field of potential companies. These rankings generally consider customer service, quality, and other essential factors.
At the same time, these lists not only provide a filter for quality. Since they explain their methodologies, they also give you a window into the selection process and ideas you should consider. Critical information like pricing, company size, services offered, and industry focus are easy to find and compare.
Competitors’ sites are also a great place to start since the developer has demonstrated a knowledge of your industry. If you like what you see, consider reaching out to the company that created the site. If you don’t, you may want to scratch them from the list.
Evaluating an Austin Web Development Company
Once you find a few companies that offer the services you need, your next step will be to do a bit of comparative research. Austin is brimming with talent, and you want to make sure that you are selecting the web development company that best fits your business.
An excellent way to find out what others think about a company is to see what they say about them—in social media, in reviews, in press articles, and on their websites. Assess the public perception of the web developer by checking out this information. Look for consistency and volume, which will show that the company can regularly provide excellent products and service.
You also need to watch out for any potential red flags. While negative reviews are not necessarily a deal-breaker, it’s still important to read between the lines. If opinions are consistently less than glowing, clients may not have been truly satisfied with the experience.
Questions to Ask Austin Web Development Companies
You’ve done your research, and you have a shortlist of potential Austin web development companies to interview. What are the crucial questions that you should be asking? Here are a few critical issues to get you started.
- References: Make sure to speak with references. When you talk to clients and partners about a company, you can confirm the information they’ve provided and get feedback on their performance. Remember to listen for subtle red flags, such as the hesitance to answer certain questions or provide details. This behavior could indicate that the reference isn’t comfortable providing negative feedback.
- Timelines and budget: Although you’ll iron out the specifics of a project once you have chosen a developer, you’ll want to speak with them about your ideas. Confirm that your vision matches what they can do and the price they’ll be charging. You will need to go in with an estimate, so preliminary internal budgeting discussions should take place beforehand.
- Portfolios: Select a few of your favorite—and least favorite—projects in their portfolio. Review them together and ask them to walk you through their thought process. Doing so will help you learn how they work and what to expect. Ask your marketing team and designers for their thoughts and include them in conversations as you get closer to making a decision about which developer to choose.
Austin offers world-class web development services, and with the proper research, you can find the ideal fit for your company and budget. Are you looking for an Austin web development company? From discovery and design to development and testing, Jackrabbit has you covered. Contact us today, and we’ll work together to create the perfect website for your business or organization.
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