How many times have you submitted a piece of work, of which you are very proud and almost certain your client will love it, only to find they hate it? Chances are this has happened to you on more than one occasion, and the surprising thing is, it’s probably not your work that causing the problem – it’s the way in which your client is reviewing it.

We’re not talking about browsers or devices here, we are talking about training your client in the proper ways of reviewing your work. Of course, it’s vital to set expectations in terms of design and functionality from the outset of any project. Equally important, is whether your client is actually equipped to review your work and provide worthwhile feedback.

The fact is, in most web design projects, we are trying to serve two masters: 1. The client and 2. Their target market. In reality, these two rarely match.

So how do we resolve this conflict between the results the client wants to achieve with their website (eg. increase sales, drive brand awareness, or launch a new product or service) and what the client’s target market wants (eg. a design that speaks to them, promotes brands trust and provides a positive experience, regardless of device).

The answer is that we need to provide some light training in advance of presenting the design, in order to prime your clients to inspect and provide feedback on your work in a  constructive way.

Start with objectives that are brutally clear from the outset. Instead of sending your client a draft design and waiting with baited breath for feedback, start by sending your client a quick guide to providing feedback. It should include some key points on what is an isn’t helpful. Examples include:

Good feedback request:

  • We’ve produced a design which will increase conversions on your website. Are there any features in your experience that could increase this even further? If so, please let me know and we’ll do our best to include them. If you are happy with everything, let us know so we continue!

Bad Feeback request: 

  • Please see enclosed a link to the design. We hope you happy with the work we’ve done and we look forward to your thoughts and comments.

A bad feedback request is opening you and your team up to a myriad of unqualified comments, pointless request for changes, and occasionally, late-night diatribes on how the client feels a total change of direction is needed. A good feedback request forces the client to properly reflect on the work that has been produced and whether is meets the brief that has been outlined.

This small change in wording could increase your project closure rates, and ultimately higher client satisfaction rates – leading to more referrals, faster payments and less work. Another thing to consider, if increasing sales is your cup of tea, is buying leads from Web Design Index. We provide highly qualified leads to web design agencies throughout the UK and we are always looking to recruit new agencies. Interested? Visit our suppliers page for more information on joining Web Design Index.