Top 20 Web Design Requirements Every RFP Response Must Include

You have recently seen a lot of posts about the requirements, contracts and proposals of a website design. What is the reason behind it?

Top 20 Web Design Requirements Every RFP Response Must Include

This is because if you want to launch a successful website design you will need more than images, texts and software code. Below is the top web design requirements every Request for Proposal (RFP) response must include.

The Success of a Website Design is a Direct Result of Solid Documentation And Structured Process

Executing an effective web design project starts and ends with a solid documentation. This solid documentation may be in a form of statement of work, contract or proposal. The name of this document is less essential than the information contained within the document.

Whether you are a large enterprise or a small business, solid documentation is necessary to execute any web project that is on-budget, on-task and on-time.

The more you pay attention on the document in the sales process, the more smoothly and easier the entire process will go to everyone involved. Here in this article we shed light on the evaluating and reviewing Request for Proposal (RFP) responses. Have a look!

Evaluating RFP Responses

Reviewing and evaluating RFP responses sounds easy? But in actual fact, it sounds easier than it actually is in when you practice it.

If the team who is handling the project asks for quotes from different design agencies, the task of evaluating web design proposals can feel them overwhelmed. Ok, they don’t just feel it – but in reality it can be overwhelming.

The greater number of RFP injuries, the larger the variations and response pool within those proposals. Hopefully in the end when shortlisted a short list of web developers was made prior to sending out the RFP that will keep this numbered limited and make the entire review process a bit easier.

Once you get a website proposal, better to ask you some crucial questions to get yourself started. These questions usually include
  • Is it possible to provide the proposal within the timeline given in the project?
  • Is this proposal within the budget constraints of the project?
  • Does the RFP response you get address all requirements of a website design?
  • Is the RFP response well-written and easy to understand?
  • Has the RFP response you get presented in a professional manner?
  • Was the response provided within the given timeframe?

The questions given above are no doubt high level questions, but it helps eliminate any web design firm who is clearly odd one out. An incomplete, late or unprofessional RFP response should be given a red flag about potential website development. Also concern an RFP response that quotes a price twice or trice your budget.

Now that you have received all the responses and also you have given a red flag to the firms who is clearly not a fit, it is now the time to review each RFP responses thoroughly so that it will be easy for you to compare RFP responses in a more apples to apples manner.

Web Design Requirements That Are Must To Look in Each RFP Response

There are different lengths of RFP responses. So, it is better to not to focus on the number of pages or the volume of text. What matters most is the solution and content presented within the response.

At the time of reviewing RFP responses, always keep in mind that each response covers some important elements of any web project. Make sure these web design requirements include, but are not limited to, the details given below.

Project Plan:

Project Plan

This must include a high-level and a huge list of project tasks. While it is just an initial plan so it won’t be as detailed as the final plan itself, but there should be enough details contain so that you can easily understand the flow of build, development, design and discovery.

Project Management Tools:

There must be a proper list of design agency’s project management tools. Every firm has a different project management toolset, as within a company there are lots of great options available. The most crucial thing is to make sure that there is a proper structure to the project management process and the given tasks, dates and owners will be documented in a way that it will be easily understood.

Team Members:

Different design agencies offer different structures for their teams. The larger will be the web design agency the larger they have the project team working on it. As a buyer, it is essential for you to know who will work with you in your team and what the capacity of work they will provide is. It is not necessary to have a full resume of each team member, but at least you have a list of people working with you in the coming months.

Baseline Technology and Content Management System:

If the RFP of your website did not specify a desired CMS solution, as this will be an essential element of the proposal. Make sure that the RFP responses list out a complete CMS of choice and any additional technology that is needed in deploying and coding the new website. Take special note of anything proprietary. At once give a red flag to a proprietary CMS package, as it locks you into that web developer for the life of the website.

Deliverables:

Deliverables

This is another most important list because it tells what is going to be delivered to you when you go-live. This might include plug-in utilized, volume of content migration, design templates and many more related to the project.

Functionality list:

This is another most important list if the website you are going to design is more than a simple brochure website. The more complex your website is, the more detailed the functionality list should be.

Content migration:

If the website project will include content migration, remember to list out how much content will be migrated over to your new website. This might include attachments, users, events, products, posts, pages and so on and so forth. If the volume and nature of the content is not defined, it will cause additional costs and scope creep for you as well as for the design agency.

SEO:

SEO

Never forget about SEO! This could include 301 redirects, Meta definition, on-page optimization, keyword required to page mapping and keyword research. If you rely on organic SEO, protect this traffic source during the redesign. The best and easiest to do this is to ensure that this topic is centered and first during the project proposal and scoping process.

Image usage:

It is essential to carefully understand the assignment and ownership of the images the designer used within the web design project. Ask the web design agency about the person responsible for placing, editing, purchase and selection of images. This will vary project to project so better to clearly define this at an early stage.

Exclusions:

While it is not necessary to include exclusions in every proposal you make, but don’t forget to list it when anytime you and the client discussed any item that is not going into the website project. This helps the buyer protect in the later process, but also clarifies your deliverables for the client.

Mobile responsiveness:

Mobile responsiveness

Today no website is complete without mobile responsiveness. It should be the major part of any modern day website. But it varies according to the size of the website. There are many large companies who have a separate mobile app or websites. It’s ok, if you don’t have a separate mobile website, make sure the proposal you design must contain language that can easily manage display adapted to tablets and phones.

APIs or/and third-party integration:

Enterprise and mid-market companies usually have a huge number of software and system packages within their organization. These systems are used to easily communicate with the new website by syncing, pushing and pulling data. If APIs or integration needs to be used sometimes, be sure the proposal defines the third-party system, data transfer, data points and the responsible party.

Schedule:

Each web proposal response must include a list that corresponds to the milestone of the project. This will tell the buyer how much time it is required for the completion of each milestone and if the project will line up to your given timetable.

Milestones:

If there are set milestones the team will work more effectively to hit goal at each stage of the website designing process before moving further at the next stage. Typical milestones usually include beta-testing or/and launching, content migration, theme coding, graphic design, information architecture, discovery and go-live.

Delays:

Delays

Project delays are usually because of both the developer and the client. It is essential to understand how to successfully handle these delays and how it will alter the overall web design project timeline and budget.

Payment terms:

If there is a smaller website project the buyer have to pay a 50% payment at the start of the project while 50% after the completion. While on the other hand, if there are larger website projects payments are based on set timings or milestones. Make sure the payment terms are defined clearly within your proposal.

Expenses:

Expenses usually include stock images, plug-in licenses, hosting fees, domain fees and/or travel. Make sure there must be proper detail of each and every expense within the proposal and the buyer is responsible for the payment.

User training:

User training

If the user will be new to the CMS, the proposal might contain some guidelines for writing training documentation, interactive training sessions or/and online training tools. Keep in mind that the training methodology must match that of your user base.

Warranty period:

The warranty period, usually covers the correction of any software bugs within the website. Warranty period, typically set for a particular period of days and must be stated within the contract or proposal. This warranty would cover coding by the website developer, but not third-party extensions or plug-in.

Ongoing maintenance:

Ongoing maintenance

Don’t ever confuse maintenance with warranty period; they are very different from that of warranty period. A maintenance agreement must need to be paid for an annual or monthly basis and it is used to provide web developer updates to the system and software over time. For WordPress websites ongoing maintenance would include the updating of entire WordPress core software and any plug-in installed on the website. Ongoing maintenance also includes one-on-one assistance, reporting, backups, monitoring and security when needed.

Post-Live support when needed:

It is not necessary that every company needs or want a maintenance agreement. In lieu of a maintenance agreement, some companies will demand for an on-demand post-live support. This is usually billed on an hourly basis and managed through a support system or ticket.

Next steps involved in the website RFP process:

After you have gone through the entire RFP responses and narrowed down on the chosen supplier, now it’s time to focus on the next step that is negotiating final details and contracts.

While the Internet is full of recommendation on contract negotiations, don’t get stalled in the process minutia. It is significant to keep in mind that this step is the last step before entering into a long partnership with the selected web developer.

This negotiation concentrates on resolving any open issues or questions, which will in turn provide you with a solid basis to start the design and implementation process. Go into contract negotiations paying attention on resolving any open issues and clarifying any points of confusion.

If the chosen project team has done a great job with project scoping and they selected the right developer, the negotiations must be no more than a signature. If in case the team has selected the wrong web design agency, the project may prove enough to compel the team to think about the number two firm.

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