How to Hire a WordPress Agency
If you are someone who is looking to hire a WordPress agency to build your website, you will probably be overwhelmed by the choices. From design and web development companies to SEO agencies, it’s hard to know where to start or how to find the right WordPress agency, but fear not! There are many aspects to hiring a WordPress agency, I’ll share with you some of my top tips.
Benefits of Hiring an Experienced WordPress Development Agency
I would recommend you find an agency that has years of experience, or has developers with experience. An experienced agency will bring you many benefits, an agency like us that has been in web development for over 20 years and has worked with many types of projects and technologies will bring you value. This kind of experience will help you achieve more productive results: Plugin knowledge, emailing, api connection, CRM and ERP connection, hosting, database, language setting and much more.
Own Your Website
I like to talk about this topic at the beginning because I see a lot of clients struggling when it’s time to switch web agencies, for whatever reason.
We always make sure that you own every part of your website. You own your website, all the files, the database with all the content. It should be so that you get 100% ownership of your website. Who likes to be a hostage to a company? That’s a big problem in the industry today.
- Buy the domain name yourself with your account
- Choose a hosting company that is not owned by the web agency and be the owner of the hosting account.
- Buy the WordPress Plugins, you own it, you can easily renew it and constantly update your website, and prevent some features from not working anymore
- Know how your email accounts are configured, are they hosted on the web hosting or somewhere else, I always recommend using Google Workspace
- Any third party providers that your website may use, such as Cloudflare, email service, image optimization
- Always be the Super Admin of all accounts
- Always backup your website
- Own your Facebook, Google Analytics, Google Search Console accounts
Voila! You own your website.
What do you want after your website is online?
You want to know how your website works, you want a website that can easily add content, add new pages, new menu items, blog pages, and add and update all kinds of content. You shouldn’t have to call your web agency to figure out how to do that, you should be able to do those things on your website without having to call the web agency.
Know your project
The more detailed you can outline your project, the better and easier it will be for your WordPress development agency to analyze your project. I really find that this is one of the most important points to help you get a good project on time and on budget, and also make sure that your vision is the same as your WordPress development agency.
It is important to choose a WordPress development agency that can help you with the scope of the project.
WordPress Theme and WordPress Editor
The theme and editor are 2 important components of your website, they work together to give you a better editing and web publishing experience.
The WordPress agency should suggest you a theme with a strong foundation and a solid editor to help you create the content for your website. Our recommendation is to use a lightweight theme that focuses on speed, stability, and accessibility. A lightweight theme loads quickly without having to use too many plugins.
There are 2 methods to create a theme for your website.
1. Creating a theme from scratch, the designer will work closely with the developer to create a theme that is compatible with WordPress features, you can create very beautiful websites, this method takes the longest to complete the project. I recommend using a theme foundation like generatepress.com and building on it, you get a responsive theme quickly and additional features, save time and money.
2. Use a premade theme and customize it, this is the most popular way to create a website design for WordPress. Once the agency chooses a good theme foundation, it comes with a premade template to choose from and then customize the theme color as per client brand. This method is faster, if you are doing a lot of advanced customization, it might be better to use the first method. It is good to use templates designed by experts in design and development.
The WordPress editor is an important part of a website, it helps you create, update and publish content easily without having to learn code. WordPress comes with the default editor called Gutenberg. Gutenberg gets more advanced and better with each release, so you will find most professional WordPress agencies recommending it.
Good theme foundations already have an editor to go with it. Nowadays, when it comes to speed, a lightweight editor that works with Gutenberg is a good option.
Ask your web agency for a working demo of the theme and editor so you can see how your site will look and how the content will be managed.
WordPress plugins easily add features and functionality to your website. There are many plugins in the WordPress plugin repository, and new plugins are being added all the time. WordPress plugins are created by many different developers, so it’s hard to tell if a plugin is good or bad until you try it. Thanks to community reviews, you can judge if a plugin can help your website.
Here’s how to choose a WordPress plugin:
- Check the rating, the higher it is the better it is
- Check if there are many updates, a plugin that is updated regularly means that the plugin developer is still working on it or people are still using it.
- Read the plugin reviews
- Check the support forum to see if the developers are helping people with problems, you can often see if there is a good community behind a plugin.
- Check to see if there is documentation. If you have questions about the plugin, email the developer and they will be able to help you.
- Usually new plugins come with a free trial, even before release, so give it a try.
It’s always good to try a new plugin on a demo site before you buy it. This way you can test it and decide if the plugin is right for you or not.
Minimum required plugins for a WordPress Site
- Itheme Security, WordPress Security is very important and should be the first plugin you install on your site
- Performance, I recommend WP-Rocket as a caching plugin, it can improve the performance for your WordPress site very quickly.
- Site Health, this plugin helps you check if your site is healthy and how it is doing.
- SEO, Rank Math helps you with onsite and offsite SEO for your website.
- Image Optimization, like the ShortPixel plugin.
- Simple History, keep track of what users are doing while editing your website
- Backup/Restore, you never want to lose data, you should be able to backup everything.
- And of course all the other plugins that make your website functional
I recommend WordPress plugin that focuses on speed, performance and accessibility.
WordPress Speed and Performance of your website
By optimizing your WordPress website, you can significantly increase its speed and performance. Your website’s response time should be less than 1 second to provide an optimal user experience; if it is above that, it would be wise to hire a WordPress consultant.
Some of the major factors responsible for slow WordPress websites are :
- Hosting and server configuration
- WordPress and plugins not updated
- Too many plugins
- Plugin malfunction
- Theme integration
- Image not optimized
Make your website fast on any device.
How much does a WordPress website cost?
The cost depends on the design and functionality you need. An agency needs to know what you want before they can estimate the cost.
What should be included in the estimate:
- Multilingual pages and currency to be installed.
- Cost of the plugin and theme
- Design and integration or installation of the template and customization
- Installation of the plugins
- Detailed list of content to be integrated
- Demo site on the web hosting you use to ensure performance is met
- Go-live deployment
It’s always a good idea to set aside some money to create content that will drive traffic to your website.
WordPress hosting is a very important decision if you are planning to have a WordPress website. This is because your hosting company will have a huge impact on the speed and security of your website. It’s not just about speed, but also about how your website is protected from hackers or malware. Choosing a hosting company that specializes in WordPress is a good idea.
How to choose WordPress Hosting:
- Hosting provider specialized in WordPress
- Fast servers with the latest version of PHP and MySQL
- Security is their focus, they will protect your website and provide security from external attacks
- Server cache, prevents unnecessary page loading
- Free SSL for your website
- Backup recovery with no downtime
- Staging server to test changes without going live
- Good customer support team
Here is a short list of good WordPress hosting providers.
WordPress is like an operating system on your mobile phone, it needs to be updated to keep it up to date with the latest bug fixes and security updates that will make your WordPress website more secure.
- Run the update for your WordPress core.
- Run updates for plugins.
- Keep your WordPress theme up to date.
- Keep your database up to date.
- Run a daily backup of your website and keep a copy in a safe place.
- Deactivate all your plugins or disable the ones you don’t need.
WordPress is a great platform for building websites, there is a wide range of plugins, themes and free elements. There are many new WordPress plugins being added to the repository every day. WordPress is constantly improving with new features and functions in the next versions.
WordPress is growing fast and many developers don’t really know what they are doing. So please avoid the low cost website design agency, they are not quality.
Happy building !!!