WordPress is currently the most popular Content Management System (CMS) in the world, and is continuing to grow rapidly. With over 75 million websites using their platform, it powers over 25% of world’s websites. For website managers and business owners, it is a publishing platform that enables users not only to write easily, but also has detailed plugins, widgets, and themes that add content, style, and functionality.
With all of WordPress’ functionality, it goes without saying that it can often be complicated. Luckily, there are a plethora of talented web developers out there that specialize in WordPress site design and management. And with so many options to choose from, it is important to know what you will be getting by asking these simple questions to your developer up front:
“What experience do you have in developing WordPress websites?”
A trustworthy WordPress developer must have sufficient knowledge of development strategy and implementation. It is quite a simple task to check their skills by asking for and exploring their work portfolio. In this way, you can see if their previous projects are up to par with what you desire. If you find the work worthy of your current project needs, then you should feel comfortable contracting them for further development. Testimonials and user reviews are also excellent ways to judge the competency of any given prospect, whether that is a single developer or a large firm.
“What information do you need from me before we begin?”
Most developers will expect you to provide them with significant data to begin with. Understanding this will give your project a good start. These details may include, but are not limited to:
• Current website assets, such as content, logo files, necessary fonts, image files, etc.
• Some form of upfront payment to start work
• Existing domain, web host & CMS login information
• Existing usernames and URLs of your social media account
• Account login details for webmaster tools and Google Analytics
• Anything else the developer may ask for
“Will my website be designed using an existing theme or a new theme from scratch?”
The developer should be heavily invested in the details of your business and be able to offer the best suggestion for you. Typically, using an existing theme will be cheaper but offer less functionality and synergy with your particular needs. Creating a theme from scratch, often called a custom website, will specifically cater the design and layout of the website to your exact specifications, but also cost a little more. Your needs can vary from project to project, so be sure to choose a developer that understand what you need!
Consider these questions as well:
• Do you provide hosting services? If not, can you recommend a good provider?
• Do you offer search engine optimization (SEO) services?
• Does the cost include ongoing support or will there be extra fees for training/management?
• Will you be including website backups?
• How will you be securing my website?
• What is the best way to contact you and how should I respond in an emergency?