As with any service that provides quotes, there is a wrong way and a right way to approach a web design company for an estimate on creating a website. You need to ensure that you are providing enough information for the designer to base their quote on and be prepared to answer any additional questions that they may have for you.
Firstly, you need to ensure that you know what you want. What is the basic purpose of your website, and why do you need one? What do you want your clients to be able to do, and what will they be able to read? How many pages will you site have (an estimate is fine), and what will be on these pages? Make sure you explain all this to the web designer.
Secondly, you need to ensure that you know how much you are willing to pay for a website. The web designer may ask you about your budget, but don’t be alarmed if they do. They are just trying to work out whether they can give you the website that you want within your budget.
Thirdly, you need to ensure that you know whether you will require any website extras, such as web hosting and maintenance. Many web design companies are able to offer you domain name and web hosting services if you don’t already have that organized, as well as various marketing and SEO services. Most companies can also provide content writing and maintenance or content management systems, but all at an extra cost to you.
Unfortunately, a lot of people expect web designers to be able to come up with a cohesive quote on the spot with very little information. Remember to provide your designer with as much information about your needs as possible so that they can work out as definitive an estimate as possible.