Website Development Agreement, Part 1: How to Avoid Major Disasters

Website Development Agreement, Part 1: How to Avoid Major Disasters

This is part 1 of a new series advising website development contracts for businesses engaged in e-commerce.

When entering into website development contracts, the more you know that you will be able to avoid contract disasters, which can prevent your website from being launched on time or functioning properly.

There are many stories about unsuccessful software development projects not only in relation to website development contracts, but also with all information technology projects. Through this series, we hope to provide some information on common pitfalls in the process, you will need to negotiate these types of agreements and protect your business, with this information to explain the terms and Application.

As no one wants to fight in court about a failed website development project, this series will give you some hints on how to achieve success.

1. Do your homework before selecting a vendor

The best way to know about an IT vendor is to talk with your current and former customers about whether they are happy camper. The way you would ask a potential employee for references, ask your potential IT vendors for names and contact information for all its customers. If you ask for "three or four references", the IT vendor will most likely provide only to their happy customers. With a list of all customers, you can make selective inquiries.

The IT vendor should not be part of your interactions with their former customers as it is less likely that the customers will be as clear.

You can ask customers if they have advice on whether the IT vendor has anticipated completing the project stages, whether there is a specific person who needs to work on the IT project, how well Contract negotiations, whether more training was necessary, and the like.

Also make sure that the IT vendor provides the names of all lawsuits (or arbitrations) that have been involved with it in the past. If you are not confident in making that request, it may be worth your time to take a deep dive on the Internet to see if the seller appears in any news or news about lawsuits (or arbitrations) Yes or No.

2. Review the IT vendor proposal and ask questions

Since the proposal of an IT vendor will usually be prepared by its marketing people, it is possible that the proposal may lack some technical details, be incomplete, or be too flashy. After reviewing the proposal, it is good to have a meeting with the technology people of the IT vendor, so that you can ask questions about the schedule of events, cloud hosting, intellectual property, and related topics.

During these meetings, integrate your findings from your discussion with the seller's current and former customers - especially if there was a problem regarding the scope of work or the planning process.

For example, if you learn from existing customers that IT vendors don't do any major work on producing wireframes, you should probably allow multiple reviews before your contract accepts wireframes.

3. Consider website requirements

You will definitely want to make sure that your new website allows you to promote your products and sell them in a convenient way. However, you also need proper access to your back-end accounting, CRM (Customer Relationship Management) and related technology.

You need to ensure that the IT vendor has the appropriate experience to connect your new website properly with the requirements of your backend system. Many website development projects fail due to not being properly connected to the back end.

Of course, if you are building a new website, you will need an IT vendor to build your back-end technology. In these situations, it is important that you learn how good the process has been for former or existing customers. Their experience can help guide you through the process at the front end, ensuring that you have a successful front- and back-end connection.

Websites are better when they are updated regularly. Customers will be hired by a website that is 10 years old. Part of your contract should be a plan to change your website every few years so that it does not look stale.

If you are not managing credit cards and are PCI-compliant, you need to understand the best options that IT vendors can provide you to pay with credit cards. It also means that you do not want to capture PCI customer data on your website, so you do not need to comply with PCI DSS.

4. Review the proposed contract and details of the work

Since there are no "standard" IT vendor contracts or statements of work (SOWs), you will need time to review these types of agreements thoroughly to ensure that you are properly Are safe and have reduced their risk.

This website development series will help you to learn more and talk about legal issues. Please stay tuned for future installments, which will include topics such as negotiating cloud agreements, IP ownership, indemnity, lawsuits and arbitration and related matters.

Of course, it would not be wrong for you to engage a lawyer with experience in drafting and negotiating website development contracts and SOWs.

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