My Process for Creating the Squarespace Website Design of Your Dreams
Having a well crafted process is important to a Squarespace website design. Why? There are many details that need to be discussed, and decisions that need to be made before and during the project. So you don’t want to leave something as important as your website coming together by chance.
1. Initial Introduction
When we first talk whether over the phone or via email, you and I will briefly discuss what you are looking for in a website. There are 5 basic things I like to know.
- Do you have a deadline?
- How many pages will you need created?
- What features do you need or want?
- Do you have examples of the kind of sites you like?
- What’s your budget?
If it sounds like something I can do, we move on to the next phase.
2. Consultation and Design Questionnaire
I believe in asking questions earlier in the process, rather than later. To get a better understanding of your expectations from the beginning, I start with my Initial Squarespace Website Design Questionnaire and a free consultation. This questionnaire is done online but you have the option to submit your answers via a web form or fill out a printable Word Document and send it back via email.
It’s at this point in the process that I ask questions like “What kind of design you want? What features you are looking for? Who’s your target market?…” From all this info, I am able to give you an accurate quote.
Once you submit the questionnaire back to me, I take about 1-3 days to review your information. If I have additional questions based on your answers, I will discuss these with you via phone or email. Once we are both on the same page regarding the details of your website, I’m ready to make an official written quote.
3. Quote and Contract Agreement
Now that I have an understanding of the scope of work your website will involve, I can estimate in my mind how much your website will cost. I base my price on an hourly rate. My quoting process is unique in this way. I believe in giving quotes with an accurate price range, instead of a flat price. I give the the minimum amount you will pay and the maximum.
I give price ranges for two main reasons.
- Every website is different and until I do the work, I really don’t know how long it will actually take – it’s a simple fact. That’s why I ask a lot of questions ahead of time, so that I can write a detailed quote and stick to it.
- I don’t believe in price creep, where as the project progresses, the price goes up. Most people like to have a price range in mind and know that there will be no surprises or price hikes at the end of the project. Nope, once I give you a price I stick to it, as long as the scope of work doesn’t change.
4. Design, Development, and Proofing
The design phase of your project officially starts once your first down payment is received. Down payments are usually 50% of the higher end of the quoted price. For example, if your quote is a range of $1200-$1400, your down payment would be $700.
At this time, you also send me all the content you wish for me to place on your pages and I give you a project timeline of when proofs will be delivered and payments are due. Your timeline will have a start date and a projected launch date.
Proofs are delivered to you by screenshots or with a live preview. You will have a few days to look over the pages being proofed, formulate a list of changes, and submit them back to me as your first round of revisions.
5. Website Launch and Transfer of Ownership to You
Once you approve the final design and layout, I will invoice you the final amount due. Then the site is launched soon afterwards and the website is transferred to you. Transfer of ownership will involve you and I doing a phone call or screen sharing session to add your name and credit card to the Squarespace account.
Before We Begin
These are the things that you need to have ready before we start the process:
- Content – Content includes all the text and images you wish to display on your site including your logo. If you are interested in purchasing stock photos I can assist you in selecting those during the design process. Don’t have a logo? You can opt to have your name written in a stylized font or have me design one for you.
- Ideas – Be prepared to have a short list of features that you need/want, and examples of sites you like. By doing so, I can understand what you are looking for in terms of design and build a website that completely fulfills your wants, and needs.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Typically I can complete a website in about 4-6 weeks. Part of the project’s speed depends upon you.
Yes, once you have paid for the website in full you will own the website. I don’t believe in keeping partial ownership of my client’s website. Some designers believe in registering the domain name in their name so that they are in control of your site. I don’t believe that’s fair.
Yes. The Squarespace platform was meant for just about anyone with little to no coding skill to be able to build a web pages. So within the platform you’ll be able to add and edit pages as you wish.
I will also give you a one-on-one training session for an hour at the end of the project so you can see how to do the page building on your own. Plus you have the support of Squarespace and their helpful resource guide to help you along the way.
Yes, you definitely can because Squarespace was built for anyone with no coding to create websites one their own. But the reason some small business owners hire a website designer like me is because they don’t want another run-of-the-the-mill, ordinary looking website – one that looks like everyone else’s website who uses the same exact template.
Yet, designers like me who know how to code, we can take the basic templates, customize it with code, and really make it a step above the rest. Adding code and having a professional eye for design kicks it up a few notches and makes the basic template something unique for your business.
If you want a site that is beyond the ordinary template, then I want to work with you!