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We believe that your design process should be seamless with your clients and our job at Pixel Together is to always support you on this road. In part two of our client workflow deep dive, we explore how two of our clients manage their collaborative process.
Chatting with web designers and builders Teagan Rosa and Sam Blight gave us some great insights into how to sustain excellent client relationships and some very handy tips on keeping them feeling engaged and excited. It was also a great reminder of why we love working with the talented, innovative people who make up the Pixel Together network!
Co-founder @ Pixel Together
Wednesday 5th May 2021
Mary Blight, Rangs Graphics
Sam Blight, Rangs Graphics
'Once the client feels the problem is heard and understood, it is easier to agree on the solution.'
Tailoring a Responsive Process
'Their enthusiasm and love for what they can do combines with me shining my design spotlight on it. If I’m excited, the client gets excited too. We both see something arise that neither of us alone could have seen.'
Rangs Graphics and Design is a Perth based firm that manages each stage of a website build. In the 20 years he has been running the firm, Sam has learnt that it is more sustainable to keep old clients rather than find new ones, so he specialises in providing personalised, smooth service. The many clients he has maintained for decades are testament to Sam’s exceptional ability to deliver!
For Sam, the core of his approach is clarity in communication and a transparent process. To that end, he likes to meet with his clients to get a good feel for what they are about and what he can provide for them. From this initial meeting onwards, Sam works to establish a great rapport and reduce friction in every communication he has with his clients. Once he understands what they want, he provides his feedback and ideas, which inevitably generates excitement as his clients see their initial idea grow and come to life.
In Sam’s words, “Their enthusiasm and love for what they can do combines with me shining my design spotlight on it. If I’m excited, the client gets excited too. We both see something arise that neither of us alone could have seen.”
Teagan, a web designer based in Melbourne, believes that reading and understanding her clients is key to a smooth working relationship. She takes the time to understand how her client works, whether they use existing project management systems such as Trello or Asana, or are more fluid in their approach. From there, Teagan tailors her process to incorporate these existing systems. Or for less tech-savvy clients, to simplify communication to email and calls.
The majority of Teagan's new business is generated through word of mouth and people seeing her completed projects. So she finds that she attracts clients who are considerate of her time and appreciate her art form and work. Therefore, she doesn’t lay out a set number of revisions or highly specific contract. Instead, like Sam, she takes time to clearly understand her client’s expectations and provide a very clear quote outlining exactly what they will receive, hosting, design, domain etc. Working transparently is key to Teagan’s process.
Similarly, Sam ensures his workflow is visible to his clients. To record any additions or amendments, Sam documents the outcome of every conversation in email. In the (very!) rare instance that Sam has encountered a client who may not be happy with an element of his work, he has a great approach... He asks them to explain how what they have received is not what they were promised and he finds this an excellent way to work out how the communication issue occurred. Once the client feels the problem is heard and understood, it is easier to agree on the solution.
Teagan Rosa, Teagan Rosa Online
'Teagan also finds that once her clients are happy with the home page, the rest rolls out smoothly. Some of her clients are very mobile driven, so she likes that Pixel Together allows her to jump between mobile and desktop quite easily while designing.'
Sam finds making changes on the fly, whilst on the phone or zoom with a client, is easily done with Pixel Together. Rather than relying on coding updates before changes are visible, Sam can incorporate any client suggestions in real-time. He finds this gives his clients a feeling of ownership and a real sense of being a part of their product's creation.
Sam also loves that at the initial stages of building his client’s site, he can create the home page for them and include navigation options, slide shows, animations and parallax. He finds sending the link to the client generates much more excitement than a flat graphic. He also uses this as a great way to manage client expectations, as seeing something live is often much safer than allowing their imagination to run free.
Sam says, “I love that Pixel Together is deceptively simple, which is where the genius lies. I’ve never been able to find something I’ve wanted to do, that I couldn’t figure out how to do, or, after talking to support, be able to do myself. They are very open to roadmapping new things you might like to see and are always upgrading the platform.”
Teagan also finds that once her clients are happy with the home page, the rest rolls out smoothly. Some of her clients are very mobile driven, so she likes that Pixel Together allows her to jump between mobile and desktop quite easily while designing. She came to web design from a career in graphic design and doesn’t feel like an expert in coding, but finds Pixel Together allows her the freedom and flexibility she needs.
'For two successful companies who rely primarily on word of mouth to generate business, they are obviously doing a lot right by their clients – not only providing beautiful, functional sites but an exciting, empowering experience along the way.'
Teagan’s transparent process means that when she and her clients are ready to deliver their site, it’s a smooth transition. She ensures her clients are 100% happy before they go live, and once they do, she finds the Pixel Together online tutorials are really helpful for any edits they might want to make themselves, further down the track.
Sam hosts a formal training session for his clients when the site is ready to go live to teach them how to use the Pixel Together customer management software. He’ll usually do this over zoom, getting his clients to share their screen, so they are the ones operating the system. Once he’s handed the site over, Sam checks in regularly with his clients and finds many use the blog function and love the easy manipulation of the graphics features.
Neither Sam nor Teagan use a formal feedback or review process, but they find that sharing their clients' websites on their blogs or socials often triggers their clients to share their posts or jump on and review their work. For two successful companies who rely primarily on word of mouth to generate business, they are obviously doing a lot right by their clients – not only providing beautiful, functional sites but an exciting, empowering experience along the way.
See how Pixel Together’s functions can support your client workflow, here.
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