Choosing the right web design company is essential to the future success of a website. Web design companies are all unique and they have their own set of advantages and disadvantages depending on the needs of the customer. The design company should be a fit for the customer and meet their needs for the website, but still fit within their budget and make them feel comfortable throughout the process. Here are some important things to consider before making the final decision.

Do a Self-Assessment
Consider the scope of the project and determine exactly what is required. Make a list of specific things that the web developer must do and that alone will create a concrete standard as to what type of web design company is appropriate.
Schedule a Consultation
Most reputable companies are willing to meet with clients in person or online for a free consultation. Take advantage of the free consultation to look at their samples and learn more about how they operate. They should be accessible to clients and address all of their needs and questions up front. Discuss what the total cost of the project is likely to be and devise a plan of action and a time table for the website to be created.
Check for Relevant Projects and Experiences
Take a look at their samples and determine if they are up to par. Consider how their website looks and then take a deeper look at the functionality and usability so visitors can navigate the website easily. Their projects should be somewhat similar to the type that the customer is looking for. Ask them if they have experience using certain types of programs like Flash or Java if that is the type of website that the customer desires.
Check References
Ask the company if they have any references available and contact them to see if they were satisfied with the service. They should have a nicely designed website and they should have positive things to say about about their experience with the company overall. Any negative feedback from a reference is a definite red flag.
Web design companies have different strategies and methods in terms of how they work with clients as well as how they build websites. Prospective customers should always schedule a consultation first and then look carefully at their previous experiences and portfolio to determine if they are the right fit for their needs.