From a pro copywriter’s point of view
If you feel in the dark when it comes to starting down the path of hiring someone to build a website for your interior design business, I can assure you you’re not alone.
I talk to interior designers all the time who know it’s time for a new website but don’t know exactly what they need or where to begin. No one really teaches interior designers how to approach getting a new website for their businesses and most of them end up learning through trial and error (which can be costly and frustrating!).
But I don’t want that for you. Working alongside website designers over the past decade, I’ve learned a lot about how to hire someone to build a website you’ll love. Here are four things I think you should know to help you make smart, informed decisions about hiring for your next website project!
1) The best creative agency in town might not be the best for you
Marketing for interior designers is incredibly complex. If your website people don’t understand the many nuances of the interior design industry and what your clients want to see in an interior design website, you’re likely to end up disappointed with what they give you.
That’s why I’m a huge proponent of interior designers hiring support service providers in general and web designers specifically who are experts in the interior design industry
If you’re looking at an agency, no matter how amazing they are, if they don’t have experience working with creative professionals at the very least if not interior designers, I suggest you move on.
You’ll save yourself time, money, and headaches simply by using a web designer who understands the interior design industry. If you need help finding someone, I have a network of amazing designers I can recommend, so just reach out.
2) Trying to save money by using a website template could backfire on you
There are, of course, a lot of factors that go into the cost of building a new website. One key factor is whether you hire a web designer to build your site from a predesigned template or to create it from scratch (i.e. a custom-coded website).
Websites built from templates can be customized to an extent, but they have inherent limitations. They usually offer some predesigned options within the template to choose from, but if you want to be able to change everything to your specifications, you could run into problems.
Just like with customizing a home that’s already built, the changes you want might not be possible. And even if they are, it could end up costing you more to have your designer make those changes to the template’s coding than it would to have had your site built from scratch to your specifications in the first place.
Simply put, a site that’s custom coded and built from scratch is going to offer you the most options and flexibility in appearance, layout, and functionality. When you go with a custom site, the options are only limited by your website pro’s creativity and coding abilities.
If price is the deciding factor for you, go into your project knowing you may not be able to have everything on your site exactly the way you’d prefer it to be.
3) Copy largely leads the design
If you’ve never worked with a professional to build a site, you may not be aware that many website designers won’t even start working on your site’s design until you give them all of the copy.
Any good web designer understands that copy is crucial to the building of a new website. Some are happy to design your site using placeholder copy, then make any necessary changes to the layout and design once the actual copy is ready to place on the site.
But other designers prefer to let the copywriter lay the initial groundwork for the site’s design as they create the copy for each page and determine where headings, subheadings, body copy, etc. are needed.
As a copywriter, I accommodate each web designer’s preferences and my client’s needs by creating a detailed sitemap/copy plan document before I begin writing the copy. If my client’s site has already been designed, I base this document on the new design and recommend only minimal changes if they’re needed to make the copy clear and effective.
If the website has not yet been designed, I create the sitemap/copy plan document from scratch, providing complete initial ideation for the pages needed and the general layout of each page. The website designer can then take this document and make everything look amazing!
(To learn when the best time is to bring a copywriter onto your website project, check out this post.)
4) You need someone on your website project to act as a strategist
A huge source of frustration I hear from new clients is that their existing website and copy are too ‘vanilla.’
Aside from their photography, it looks and feels like it could belong to just about any interior designer. And let’s face it, if your website isn’t doing anything to differentiate you as unique and showcasing how you’re the perfect designer for your ideal clients, is it really helping you?
To get a website and copy that helps you stand out, you need someone on your project who’s more than just an implementer. You need someone who understands not only the many nuances of your industry, but also how to apply marketing strategies that will ‘soft sell’ your luxury services
Much many interior designers’ knowledge and understanding of new construction and renovation projects as well as furnishing and decorating perfectly equip them to advocate for the homeowner’s best interests, a copywriter who specializes in the interior design industry can help strategize your website’s design and functionality, as well as the copy.
While that is admittedly something of a shameless plug for my copywriting services, it’s also true! Most website designers won’t really be able to weigh in on the exact copy you need, but an experienced copywriter is knowledgeable about the layout and design options available to you.
So, if you’re looking to get a new website (or even if you’re just revamping your existing site) and you want to start off on the right foot, keep these four tips in mind. Hiring the right people will save you from frustration and maximize your investment in your website.
Are you in the process of hiring someone to build a website for you and need a copywriter who knows the ins and outs of the interior design world? I’ve had the pleasure of working with many talented and incredible designers and I’d love to create copy that gets you found by more of your ideal clients!
My services are designed to give you writing products that connect you with the people who sit right in the center of your target market—those “bullseye” clients you’ll love working with and who’ll view you as their superhero designer. Sounds good, right?