OK, we get it — you want a web design firm that you can meet and greet with face-to-face, just so, when you need something, you can drive out to meet with them. The real question is how do you define "local"? There are local firms that are in the same city with you, but their offices are 45-60 minutes away, which means meetings can potentially be very limited. There are also firms that are located in other states. However, they can meet with you right away via modern means, such as Skype, GoToMeeting, etc. or simply, phone calls. Here's our (somewhat shocking) statistic:
We've never met face-to-face with 95% of our clients (and we have a lot of clients all over the United States.)
Of the approximately 15% local clients that we've had the privilege to meet face-to-face, the meetings actually occurred at their offices.
Bonus fact — 50% of all those meetings involved donuts and cupcakes.
So, if you're looking for a local web design firm, that likes to bring donuts and cupcakes to meetings, contact us!
Jokes aside, if your website project is potentially very large, and face-to-face meetings are very important for you during the web design/development process, then yes, try your best to find a local web design firm. For most cases, the location of a web design firm is not as important as other factors such as quality, affordability, and availability.
The more firms you interview, the more comfortable you will be with the final choice, but it also means more time spent during the process. Therefore, don't underestimate the amount of time it would take to properly interview a firm. Below are the facts from our clients:
Our clients often disclose that, on average, they usually interview 4 to 5 web design firms.
Of all our clients, the ones that have formal marketing teams often have longer shortlists.
For clients that don't have formal marketing teams, the search and interview process is often performed by the companies' leading people such as Partners and Presidents. This often means that their shortlists are short since these individuals don't have much time to spend on the search process.
Bonus fact: Many of our clients come from referrals. However, one exceptional client of ours mentioned to us that they interviewed at least 10 web design firms, performed Strength/Weakness analysis on all of them, assigned scores to each one on an Excel sheet, before making their final choice. If you have the time and resources to do that, then by all means. If not, just hire us!
Straight from one of our clients' mouth: Don't call them. Just email them a bunch of questions (using their contact form) and see how quickly they return your inquiries and how patiently they answer your questions. That would provide additional insights into the potential relationship you would have with the web design firms.
Yes. We love working with national and international advertising agencies. PixFlex is one of the very few "boutique" firms that large advertising agencies depend on when a specific set of expertise is required. And yes, we do sign nondisclosure agreements (NDA).
Except licensed assets, you own the custom code and graphics that we create for your website. Period. In many cases, you can use the graphics for other purposes, such as PowerPoint presentations, on-screen display, tearsheets, posters, etc.
Backups (website and related databases) can be performed on a monthly, daily, or even hourly basis on the server. Therefore, hosting providers often charge a minimal fee to perform this service for you. You should request this service from them and pay their fees directly.