Creating a business’ online presence starts from having an attractive and effective website to showcase your product or services. With the emergence of content management system (CMS) platforms such as WordPress, small businesses with little to no experience of building a website can easily drag and drop their content from the readily available themes. Even so, hiring an expert WordPress developer to create your customised site is a necessary step as your website’s features become more and more advanced.
However, hiring developers can be challenging which means you would need to allot time, effort and money to find the right developer. Here are some questions you need to ask yourself before hiring a WordPress developer.
Question # 1: What are your website’s requirements?
Before hiring WordPress developers, think of the features that you need to have on your website. Will you be producing content that requires embedded videos? Do you need to add pop-ups and opt-in forms? Listing down all your website requirements can help you determine the level of expertise you need when hiring a WordPress developer.
Question # 2: Should you buy off-the-shelf or build your own?
When creating a WordPress site, you have two options: get a pre-made website, or develop your own.
Off-the-shelf WordPress themes allow small businesses to set up a basic site for a small fee, or even for free. Aside from being a cheaper alternative to creating your own, pre-built WordPress sites are also:
- fast and easier to set up
- great for businesses who just need a brochure type website that presents your products and services
However, a pre-built site limits you as you can’t:
- further add or change features and fully customise your site
- use all plugins as it might not be compatible with some themes
- debug or fix issues
- support the size and customisation for large businesses
Given this information, if your site requirements only needs simple features and functions, a pre-built site is the better option. Otherwise, continue on to further assess if hiring a WordPress developer is beneficial.
Related Article: A non-techie’s guide to hiring WordPress developers
Question # 3: What are the skills and requirements you should look for?
Before looking at the desirable skills and qualifications you should look for, understand first the role and responsibilities of a WordPress developer.
Your WordPress developers must be able to:
- design and implement new site features and functions
- establish and guide the site’s architecture
- manage and maintain all aspects of the Content Management System (CMS)
- create a responsive and effective design
More or less, these are the responsibilities of a WordPress developer. This can significantly change depending on your website and business requirements.
Keeping these responsibilities in mind, the best WordPress developers have the following skill sets:
- Knows CSS preprocessors like Sass or LESS
- Has graphic and responsive design skills
- Knows a WordPress framework such as Genesis
- MySQL database programming
- API integrations like Zapier, Twilio, etc.
When hiring WordPress developers, also consider the following:
- Look for experience
Ask if a WordPress developer had previous experience creating and maintaining a similar website. Additional desirable traits include customer service.
- Check for PHP Proficiency
As the official programming language used in WordPress, PHP is a basic but essential requirement for any WordPress developer.
- Know what’s inside their toolbox
See if a WordPress developer is proficient with the updated tools for WordPress development. These tools include debuggers, IDE, and a variety of deployment and version control tools. Knowing and having the right tools allows a smoother workflow among your WordPress developers.
- Project management skills are a big plus
Having an organised WordPress developer with good project management skills makes it easier for you to manage especially if you would be hiring a whole team.
Question # 4: Do you need to hire in-house, freelance, or offshore?
Once you have figured out what you’re looking for, it’s time to think for how long you will need to hire a WordPress developer. When hiring WordPress developers, you have three options: hiring in-house, freelance, or offshore.
In-house developers are a good choice if you need to manage a large number of WordPress sites, constantly update the codebase, or require a support personnel. However, if you don’t need to constantly maintain and monitor your WordPress site, hiring a full-time WordPress developer can be a costly decision in the long-run. Given your business needs, decide whether or not your site and business requirements will need a full-time WordPress developer.
Freelance WordPress developers are a great option if: 1) you need a WordPress developer only up to the launch of your site, 2) you don’t need someone to maintain your site for you or 3) you are comfortable with your WordPress developer working remotely.
Hiring a freelance WordPress developer can help keep costs down, but also involves risks in terms of time, skill level, and confidentiality. Ideally, freelancers must be managed accordingly to ensure the completion and success of the project. If you’re planning to hire freelance WordPress developers, try to ask for recommendations for better credibility.
If you’re thinking of getting a full-time developer while staying on a budget, you can also hire offshore WordPress developers. As an effective business solution, you can get a full-time service while minimising costs and reducing risks. With an offshore partner, hiring and managing your dedicated offshore developers is made easier and risk-free due to the shared liabilities. The key to a successful and long-term offshore partnership is finding a reliable IT offshore provider.
Related Article: Top 9 Criteria for Choosing The Right IT Outsourcing Partner
Question # 5: What is your budget?
After setting all your website and manpower requirements, here comes the biggest question: How much is your budget?
Look at your current finance in terms of your monthly recurring revenue (MRR). According to MemberDev writer Joanne Penn, if you’re earning an MRR between $3,000-$5,000, it makes sense to include a budget for a developer who in the long run can help you grow your business.
If you’re earning less, reducing your site requirements and getting a freelancer, or even doing it yourself can help you stay within budget. A good option is to hire offshore to significantly reduce costs while still hiring a dedicated developer to create and maintain your site.
Ready to hire your WordPress developer now? Easily find and hire with us today. Learn how Cloud Employee works, see our Developer Pricing Guide, or talk to us. You can hire dedicated offshore developers with us across many technologies.