For the past few months I have been speaking with web developers about doing a project for us. I spoke to developers from around the country (actually the world) and most of them were referrals from people I know. Looking back at this process, I am surprised and appalled at how these companies were trying to sell me. Here were some of the mistakes:

  • One developer, who built a site that I like a lot, spent 10 minutes on the phone with me and sent a proposal. When I received it I figured that either the developer was a mind reader or they had no idea what I needed. It was the latter.
  • I had to constantly chase another developer for calls and a proposal. So I kept wondering how responsive they would be after I gave them a deposit.
  • Another developer sent a proposal that was a 30-page technical Power Point.

There were others, but I think you get the point. At the end of the day, none of these developers understood sales basics, such as understanding what your customer really wants, how they make decisions, and following up on a timely basis (imagine that).

By the way, the developer that got the gig was someone that I met towards the end of the process. Within seven days of meeting them (in Denver), they set up two calls, sent me a proposal and had a follow-up call to discuss my concerns.

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