Are developers holding your website hostage?
When trying to get a new website up and running, it’s easy to feel like your developer is making up the rules as they go. But if you’ve ever felt like they’re not working with you, not listening to what you need, or just holding your site hostage because they’re trying to make more money than they should, this post is for you.
In this blog post, we’ll talk about signs that your developer may be taking advantage of you and how to take back control of the hostage situation.
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Questions To Ask Before Hiring A Web Developer
It’s important to remember that the person you hire to help you build your site isn’t just another colleague you’ll be spending a lot of time with. They’re also the person who’ll be helping guide your business on the journey towards success.
And that means it’s worth taking your time and researching who you’re hiring before committing to them – from looking only at their portfolio and hoping for the best to asking some questions ahead of time.
Here are some questions that can help you vet a potential web developer ahead of time:
What Are Your Project Requirements?
Most developers will have a list of requirements when they approach you. It’s your job to find out what these are and make sure that you’re on the same page as them.
After all, nobody wants to waste valuable budget on a project they can’t get their head around – so make sure you understand what they’re expecting. There might be some features that aren’t useful to your product or service, but if the developer tells you there are, then tell them straight up: “That seems like something we’d need to work on down the line. Thanks for pointing that out.”
The developer’s request is theirs, so never try to influence it in any way.
How Much Time Do You Have To Work On My Website?
If you’re working with a freelancer or a small development team, you probably don’t need to worry about this. But if you’ve hired a big agency or someone doing it as a side project, it can be hard to get the time you need.
The web development process can have extended lead times, and there may be other clients in front of you. Before hiring your developer, ensure they have time to get your website up and to run. If there’s no timeline for when the work will be completed, ask for one before accepting them as your developer.
What Is Your Web Design Process?
Every web development agency has a unique process for building websites. Some will break down the cycle into phases:
Others may take it even further, defining stages such as:
- Requirements gathering
- Business Analysis
- Design Document
To work with an agency, ensure you understand their web design process. It’s your website, after all, and you’re essential to getting what you need from them.
Steps To Prevent Your Website From Being Held Hostage
Your website is the most valuable asset of your business, and there’s no reason to risk it being held hostage just because your developer is trying to squeeze you for more money. It can be a common issue in web development.
Here are some tips for avoiding being taken advantage of by developers:
Buy Your Domain
Getting a domain for less than $10 already set up and running is possible, so it’s not hard to do. Various domain registrars will allow you to purchase a domain for not much more than that.
The main reason this is so important is that it prevents your website from being held hostage by the developer and reduces any costs that may be passed onto you.
Depending on your business, you may want to purchase your domain years ahead. It can help you avoid hidden costs when you’re looking to get a new website up and running. The last thing you need is your developer throwing a curveball and trying to charge you extra because they didn’t register the domain name correctly.
Control Over Registrar Access
Another way to prevent being taken advantage of is to have total control over who can purchase the domain and change the DNS settings.
Many developers and hosting companies will handle this for you, which means that if something goes wrong with your site, it could be days or even weeks before you get it back on track because they’ll need to contact the domain registrar.
But by taking control of this process yourself, you’ll be able to ensure that everything is set up correctly with your name as the prominent domain owner and not your developer’s.
Confirm Hosting Environment
Before hiring a developer, find out which hosting environment they will place your website on.
After all, this is another thing you don’t want to be held hostage – especially if your site ever gets hacked or the site is inaccessible for any reason. Who knows how much time will pass before it gets back up and running?
The last thing you need is for your website to be offline during a crucial time in your business cycle. It could be a sound bargaining chip during contract negotiations with your developer.
Fully Back Up Your Website’s Files and Data
Whether creating a new website or upgrading an existing one, you must know where to find your website’s files and data. It means that you’ll be able to quickly restore it if your developer breaches the contract’s terms.
Make sure that you set up a backup security plan for all of your files, making backups of these so that you can use them again if something goes wrong with your site or if you want to continue with any development work on your site in the future.
Ways To Get Back Your Website Being Held, Hostage
Suppose you’ve hired a freelancer or developer, and they cannot provide what you need. In that case, there are some relatively simple ways to get your website back up and running without having to hire another developer.
It’s best to be prepared by thinking ahead of time. It will help you prevent your website from being held hostage in the first place. Many different things can go wrong with a website, so here are some ways that you can go about getting it back up again:
Secure Your Domain Name Registrar Access
If your developer registered the domain name with their name, they would have much control over it. But if you register your domain name, then you will have total control over it and won’t need to wait for it to be restored by your developer.
In other words, if you have control of the domain registration, you’ll be able to decide who can purchase the domain and change its DNS settings.
Securing your domain is a powerful way to prevent your site from being held hostage by a developer – as long as you have total control over the registrar.
Take Back Your Website’s Files And Database
If you’re setting up a new website for your business, it’s best to have your website’s files and database backed up. This way, you’ll know where to find your website’s files and data in case something goes wrong or if you want to continue with any development work on your site in the future.
Starting with a fresh slate can be scary – especially if it takes several months to get everything set up correctly. So by backing up everything, you’ll know exactly where to look when restoring your site is time.
Get A New Website Hosting Service
Suppose your website is being held hostage by your developer. In that case, you may have to decide whether it’s better to get a new hosting provider to restore your website and move it to a new domain. It is often an excellent way to go when your original website files have been hacked or are not functioning correctly.
The main thing you’ll want to look for with a new web host is how long they’ve been in business. It’s essential that you’re dealing with an experienced company, especially if you’re moving from one web host to another, as there are various issues that may arise from having two hosting services combined on the same domain.
Make the right choice when hiring a developer to create your website. It is vital, as you don’t want your business’s future held hostage by a terrible development decision.
So be sure you’re choosing the right person for the job and looking at their background and experience before signing any contracts or handing over any money. It is also true if you’re contracting your developer out to another company, as they’ll be handling everything they need on your behalf – which means they’ll have complete control of your website.