Everyone want to have a website now but few of them prefer to outsource to companies in India, China etc but few want to get work done in their country, someone nearby.
Do you prefer to outsource to companies in India, China etc?
Qualities company must have in-order to get your Web Design, Development & Internet Marketing project?
I agree with the poster who stressed the need for good communication. Also, if design is a critical component of your project, you need to be sure that your web designer has an intimate understanding of the aesthetic language of your audience's culture. If they have never lived in the United States, they will not have an intimate understanding of the aesthetics of the American culture. That works both ways. Years ago I was contracted as a lead designer on an American web site that focused on the Japanese market (in Japan). I had to work closely with someone in Japan to make sure that my design was relevant to their culture. It took quite bit of education and some humility to make that relationship work. It taught me the need to understand the culture you design for intimately.
They need to show me the previous work they have done, or if they can't, at least tell me who they have done work for. And I need to be able to contact these companies to talk about their experience.
I run a design agency and have helped countless startups designing their websites and products. Here is my advice whether you get someone from India, China or locally to do it.
1. Figure out if design is part of your overall strategy or whether you simply need a presence. With this I mean figure out how important design is to whatever you are launching. Many startups put too much time, money and effort into making their website perfect only to find out 6 months later they need to pivot or change their communication efforts. There are generally 3 situations where it's going to be important to spend time and money on a good design agency or designer.
3. Hire them in phases Instead of getting one price on the entire project, hire them one phase at a time (UX, Visual Design, Front-end programming, development). This will benefit both of you. You will figure out if are a good match without having betted your entire budget in one basket and they won't be stuck with this stupid client they hate if it would come to that. It will also give them something to work for (next phase) which means they will often put more effort into the first phase (again a benefit to both of you).
Pay them 25% upfront This might sound weird but since you are a startup they are running a big risk taking the job. I know many stories (and have experienced them myself once in a while) companies getting a lot of work done without having the money. So to get that insecurity out of the way do this. Many agencies will ask for it anyway (some even more) because they have burned their fingers too many times. There is a huge advantage to doing this by paying 25% upfront you are putting the pressure on them to work those hours as quickly as possible it also removes any argument internally in the agency about whether they should put their best people on you or prioritize bigger clients.
Work on getting an internal team Whether you have hired an agency or a team of freelancers work on getting your own people. Outsourcing means paying for their time this is beneficial if you are trying to get started and don't have the capital or is in a position to hire your own people. But once the main project is over you will be better off having someone in your own stable rather than having to pay for an agencies time. The second you start having ad hoc assignments, changes which where not part of the agreement etc. the agencies will down prioritize you since you aren't bringing in the big bugs anymore and you will loose most advantages with regards to their cost. As an alternative this might be where you outsource to China or India as they majority of conceptual work have now been done and your tasks are less complex.
If you can afford it get a copywriter Unless you are a savvy writer yourself you will benefit greatly from getting a good copywriter to help you communicate your product as clearly as possible. Good copywriting is half of the design experience, this is why advertising agencies often have teams with one art director and one copywriter on each.
Hope this helps.