Do not outsource web development projects on freelance sites
Getting a website up and running for your business is crucial for growth. People often check the web first to see your business. If you don’t exist, you don’t seem like a serious business.
However, outsourcing web development to India via a freelance site like UpWork can have dire consequences, especially if you don’t understand the tech.
This is a case study from a production company who outsourced web development to India, but it could be applied to any industry, any outsourcing location that isn’t your country and far more advanced sites or even app development.
Reasons why you should not outsource web development to someone on those sites:
1 – “You get what you pay for”
This is often the case. Yes, there are diamonds in the rough, but how long do you want to be looking? How much pain and headache is worth the find? How much is your time worth?
You’ll likely end up spending more time and money fixing the problems they created than if you’d just gone with someone in your country in the first place.
2 – They take longer than you think
Whether it’s the communication breakdown or the 5000 other projects they’re working on simultaneously because every other small business owner wanted to outsource web development for $200, this will take longer than you think.
Don’t pay hourly. They will keep adding hours because they know you don’t understand how long it should take. They will keep milking you for all the cash they can.
Set a firm price with a local developer that speaks your language natively and you’ll be able to have the time-frame conversation before you start the project.
3 – It won’t look how you expect
That was the about page of our recent client before we got the website and fixed it. It was also the contact page and the Future Slate page. That’s correct, they had 3 pages that looked the exact same – broken.
Design discussions never seem to go as planned, but this is beyond design breakdown. It’s complete site breakdown.
They wrote it all in custom code so nobody could really fix it anyway without spending hours diving through the code to find the mistakes…
4 – It won’t work how it should
The developer had also decided to use their site as a link farm. Making a nice side business for themselves.
You see those recent posts in the screenshot above? There were 330 posts over 3 months that were all spam posts full of links to sell things. Not one post was from our client, Silver Hero Entertainment (their new website in link).
They also didn’t show the client how to update anything or write their own blogs. This makes sense considering the development firm in India they hired was using their website as a pot to brew link stew and have a nice secondary income stream from the site.
This absolutely destroys your site’s domain authority and SEO value. Google will have them penalized for a long time.
5 – They will disappear
Problem with the site? Need something fixed/changed? You won’t hear from them.
It’s true, plenty of American development firms do this too. I have a different case study for that involving a startup that got bled of cash by a low-quality development firm.
You won’t get anything fixed or changed when you can’t get in touch. And since they live on another continent… You’re wasting your time.
Don’t outsource overseas on your own. Outsourcing through a team with experience outsourcing is a viable option, as they know who to use and how to manage them. A company like Brix would be good for this.
Or hire a local designer and developer (they should honestly be the same person/team at this point because of how easy it is to do them at the same time).
We’ve done a few sites. Maybe you like what you see in Johnny’s portfolio.
If so, contact us. We’d be happy to help.
Also published on Medium.