If your business needs the services of a web developer, it often makes more sense to find a freelancer compared to hiring somebody in-house. This is especially true if you are only going to need to assign odd jobs to a web developer rather than having somebody who works full-time hours for you.
Working with a freelance web developer has a range of benefits for businesses; you will be able to choose from a wider pool of talent, save money by only paying for the work that you need and build a good relationship with somebody who you can always turn to for any web development needs. But how do you find this person? We’ve put together some top tips to help you find the ideal freelance web developer for your business.
Use a Reputable Search Tool
When looking for a freelance web developer, there are plenty of job boards to post on and sites to use where you can connect with freelancers, so it’s no surprise if you’re feeling a little lost when it comes to where to start. Look for a reputable agency designed to make hiring a freelancer as easy as possible with you by connecting you with tried-and-tested professionals with strong portfolios and lots of excellent past client reviews.
Don’t be afraid to ask a lot of questions when interviewing potential freelancers, whether you’re doing it over the phone, via Zoom or email, or even in-person if lockdown isn’t an issue in your area. Chances are, your freelancer is also going to have plenty of questions that they want to ask you too, in order to determine whether the work that you have available is going to be a good fit for them.
Any good freelancer will be more than happy to discuss their past work with you and talk about your project in-depth to figure out if it’s something that they can handle.
Have a list of questions ready before you conduct any preliminary interviews. Good examples of questions you may wish to ask include:
- Tell me about three projects you have worked on in the past? – Ask the candidate what they found most challenging about these projects, and which parts they felt were most successful.
- What programming languages can you work in? – There are many different programming languages, so check to see if the web developer you are interviewing is up to date in their knowledge of the most recent languages.
- Can you tell us what’s wrong with our existing website? – Any web developer worth their salt will have taken a good look at your website and analyzed it in detail. If they have shown zero curiosity so far, it suggests they are not highly motivated.
- What industries do you usually specialize in? – It’s helpful if a web developer has experience in your niche. For example, if you are a law firm, a web developer familiar with the nuances of law firm web design is more useful than someone who has only previously worked on CBD sites.
- Do your services include content and SEO? – Depending on what your expectations are, this is an important question to ask. There’s no point hiring a web developer for a job if they won’t do everything you need them to do.
- How many revisions will you provide? – It is unreasonable to expect multiple revisions, but it is reasonable to expect at least one revision included in the price since it’s unlikely the first iteration of your website will be exactly what you are hoping for.
View Past Work
Good freelancers will have a portfolio of work that you can refer to in order to see what they are capable of and compare it with the type of results that you want from your web development project. Ask your potential freelancer to send you some links of past websites that they have developed for clients so that you can visit them to not only see how they look and feel, but get an idea for the usability too.
Any decent web developer will have a large portfolio of work you can see. That said, it is sometimes worth giving an inexperienced web developer a try even if they don’t have lots of previous projects to show you. As long as they can show you a few small projects they have worked on, that should be enough.
Test their Communication Skills
Pay attention to how quickly they respond to messages and queries. Working with a freelancer can be very stressful if that person goes off the grind right before a project is due for delivery. Often, freelancers work in a different country, so it’s not like you can go to their office and harass them.
Look for a freelancer who is responsive and has excellent communication skills. How they respond to feedback and questions is very important if you want to forge a good working relationship.
Ask for References
Finally, treat hiring a freelancer in much the same way as you would treat hiring a full-time employee; thoroughly vet your potential freelancer and ask them to provide you with some references so that you can get in touch with their past clients. Past clients will be able to help you with a clearer idea of what the freelancer in question is like to work with; not just the quality of the work but also all the little things that matter, like how well they fit into the company culture and if they complete work in a timely manner. You can also check out their LinkedIn page for references.
Put Everything in Writing
Do not rely on verbal agreements. Put everything in writing, save all digital correspondence, and detail costs, what work is included in the price, and what happens in the event of a dispute. This will go a long way towards preventing problems later.
If you need a web developer, hiring a freelancer often makes sense. Keep these tips in mind, and you’ll be on your way to finding the ideal freelance web development professional for your business.