The 4 Pillars of Awesome Clients

Thursday, August 06, 2015 3:00 PM

Sometimes when it comes to actually getting initial content/information from clients after a project has been approved, they kind of drop off the face of the earth.

Sometimes when it comes to actually getting initial content/information from clients after a project has been approved, they kind of drop off the face of the earth.

You, the client, are the most important part of any business dealings we do, and we're here to make sure you leave with a product or service you are totally thrilled about.

As Division 1's primary Edmonton phone-answerer, I have the pleasure of meeting most perspective clients first and getting to know what they're looking to build with us - whether it's a new vision for web design, an SEO campaign, custom software, app development, or anything in between. During this crucial initial development stage I've noticed a handful of things that help speed up and streamline the development process, making the journey smoother and more exciting for both the client and for us as developers. We present to you, The 4 Pillars of Awesome Clients!

1. A Slightly More-Than-Vague Idea of Your Ideal End Result

Want custom software designed and programmed for your business? Cool, we do that! However, we're gonna need a general description of what you want to accomplish with that software. "I want to track my delivery trucks within Alberta" works. So does "I want customers to be able to fill out mandatory forms online". "I'm not sure yet… I have a few different ideas" followed by no elaboration does not. And yes, this happens, and makes for more of a teeth-pulling experience on our end.

While you most definitely do not need to have every detail worked out upon initial contact, we do require at the very least a base goal. Even something as simple as, "My website is from 1998 and I need to update it to the 21st century".

2. You Know What You Want to Spend

Your web developer needs some direction on what exactly you want.

We know, talking about money is kind of awkward - we don't love doing it on our end either. When I ask a client over the phone what their budgetary range is, I'm not just morbidly curious - I need to know whether their expectations will fit within our price points. I think clients may be scared that they either have too low of a budget and risk over-the-phone rejection, or will quote us something way too high and think we'll jack our prices up accordingly. Here's my exact thought process and due reaction in any situation:

Your budget is too low: Don't fret, this happens. We understand you may not know what the going rate is for professional development, and that's totally ok. We most definitely won't flat-out reject you, but will explain that our prices are, for your particular project, in a broad to range. Way beyond your budget? Totally cool, thanks for giving us a call, and have a great day - really!

Your budget is pretty much accurate: Awesome! That sounds like something we can definitely do, so let's meet ASAP and get a quotation put together.

Your budget is super high: this is great as we can quote you, and discuss with you, all of the additional, optional, bells and whistles you may or may not want to go ahead with. Our prices always reflect the scope of the project - not of the client's pocketbook.

3. You're Motivated and Responsive

So we sent you a quotation, you were super pumped about it and wanted to jump right in… and now you're MIA. Sometimes when it comes to actually getting initial content/information from clients after a project has been approved, they kind of drop off the face of the earth. We want to sustain that high energy and motivation! Conversely, if you're just super busy, shoot us a quick e-mail and tell us you'll be a few days getting back to us - this is 10,000% understandable and we won't worry that you fled the country.

4. You're Honest

Don't be afraid to tell us what you really think, we're on your side.

Not a huge fan of something? We promise we won't be offended - tell us and we'll figure out how we should adjust it. Had some unexpected expenditures come up and worried about paying us on time? Please tell us and we'll work a payment plan out that fits your situation. Something broken/not working how you wanted it to? Please, please tell us so we can fix it ASAP and make you happy!

It's our #1 goal to make you happy and excited about your new project. Your honesty is crucial to us getting to that place - after all, you're paying us to execute your vision! You, the client, are the most important part of any business dealings we do, and we're here to make sure you leave with a product or service you are totally thrilled about. While our designs are negotiable, your 100% satisfaction is not.

Bridget VanWart

Bridget VanWart

Bridget VanWart is Div1's newest addition, joining the team after graduating with a Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of New Brunswick. When she's not serving as Div1's client liaison and administrative assistant, she can be found Instagramming pretty things she stumbles upon around the city.

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