Web sites run all over the spectrum regarding their purposes and how each of these web sites is built. Corporate web sites are usually the most expensive as corporate leaders want certain information out there for their viewing public. Think about automobile companies and how much research prospective car buyers do online these days before going to visit the dealership.
This is important for you as you determine how your target audience interacts with your web site. Do you have a web site which helps educate others on what you have to offer or is your web site your only selling platform? Looking at the demands of your web site will often call for custom web site design as not all web sites can fit into one size fits all box.
You should look at how your target audience will use potential features before looking for custom web site design. It is not always the company which has the superior product which wins but the one which communicates its benefits most clearly to the target audience.
Now that the emphasis has been placed on first understanding what your target audience, there are several web sites you can use when looking for custom web site design. You have probably heard of several of these web sites. The two most popular are Elance and Guru. You can also look at rentacoder or sologig. The beauty behind these websites is that you can post your project and have people bid for your business. Each of the persons or companies bidding on your business will often have a profile which can give you information such as how much has been made on that website, feedback from other buyers, and testimonials. You can also have your payments placed into escrow until the work is done so that there can be a fair and objective process.
Looking at the bidding process, you choose the winner for the custom web site design project. Once this is completed, you will talk further with the winning bidder to create a scope of work for the project so that everyone is on the same page. You can continue to talk throughout the project. This whole process allows you to protect your dollars while being a more educated and discerning user of potential custom web site design companies. This will be important when you are looking to develop an online community or get involved more heavily with social networking. Not all networking platforms are made for your web site and you will have a demand for some of these services.