What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?
I don’t have metrics yet. We pushed it live just last week, so it’s fresh. The things that we need to work are functioning. The flow works, and our products are showing up much better than on the other website. Everything seems to be working fine. We caught stray bugs here and there, but it was nothing that couldn’t be solved, and I’m not embarrassed with the website as it stands.
They continued to answer questions after the website was delivered. The statement of work didn’t include them setting the website up for us; they were just going to code based on our design and then send us the entire package for someone on our team to set it up on AWS. We ran into a few snags, and Site Nine Studios was willing to interact with us beyond their scope of work, without charging us extra.
How did Site Nine Studios perform from a project management standpoint?
We were using Basecamp with the other agency, and I didn’t want to use that because the formatting would get stripped anytime I sent feedback. I set the process of sending Site Nine Studios a Google Doc whenever they gave me an update. We didn’t use any project management tools. We had a lot of back and forth. I’d get an update from Site Nine Studios and would then put together a Google Doc listing the changes I wanted. They gave me access to the platform so that I could co-develop with them, since there were pages that I needed to write content for while they were doing development.
I was pleased with their responsiveness. Site Nine Studios wasn’t the most well-oiled machine for project management, but that could be because they were willing to follow the pace I set. As soon as they sent me the state of the site, I gave them back a document with the changes we needed, and they made those changes. I was fine with that.
What did you find most impressive about them?
It’s definitely the price; that was what drove us to work with them in the first place. With a decreased price, there comes the expectation that the work won’t come with the bells and whistles that a $100,000 website comes with. If we’re saving $75,000 and getting a product that might require a bit more of a hands-on process in the end, then it’s worth it to me. I’m really thankful to Site Nine Studios, and I’ll continue to work with them in the future.
Are there any areas they could improve?
At times, there were little bugs on the site that could’ve been caught earlier. They fixed everything, though. They don’t have a super fine attention to detail. That’s something we’d expect when paying super high bucks, but it was good for the price we paid.
Do you have any advice for future clients of theirs?
If client wants to have a successful project with Site Nine Studios, they should be willing to document the changes they need and provide clear feedback throughout the process. Site Nine Studios will be able to work with that feedback. However, if you leave them guessing about what you want, they’re not shy about making an educated guess, and it may be that the choice they make is different than the one you would’ve. That’s just them operating with the best that they have, based on the information that has been given to them.
If the client has a vision for their website, they need to express it. Site Nine Studios will work with it and bring it to life. They’re really good at working without a ton of developer notes, but, if you want the website to be exactly as you imagined it, it’s probably good to take the time right off the bat to make those notes on every aspect of the site. If I wanted a call-to-action or to change a certain color, I had to provide examples and explain it.