Sometimes just the slightest change in layout or additional / less text can have effect ones rankings, especially in a competitive category.
In SSntell's scenario, any potentially successful candidate will be wary of the possibility of losses in the current top Search positions. I'm guessing that they were hoping the site wasn't doing too well in SERPs, and were hoping to include search traffic boost in their submission.
Asking for Analytics info early during the design process might be really helpful, and a diligent web design company might ask for this in order to get an idea of where you're traffic is coming from and why so that they can manage the risk of any of this traffic perhaps being lost in the transition.
Asking for it in order to quote seems a bit fishy - wouldn't they be tempted to bill more if they found someone was getting 100,000 uniques a month than 10,000 for instance. But they could get an idea of this sort of thing from numerous other sources.
Just move on to the next designer for now and compare notes of each meeting. Some will not ask for anything other than reviewing the website. Seams logical to gather some information. If you don't feel comfortable then next them
Redesign has an impact on rankings especially if your able to get it to load faster. Make the site more appealing, more links to it .. increased chatter etc..
If the website is already #1 / #2 for keywords - caution in the wind changes can impact both positive and negative if done incorrectly.
Ask for references, contact them - look at the sites they send you. Check the age of the domain, use the waybackmachine to see the changes they made if possible.
I do Web Design and SEO and I have a standard questionnaire that I have all of my clients fill out in order to get a better idea of what they need and where I can help. Nowhere on the questionnaire do I ask for sensitive information before giving a quote and being hired. I might ask what you are currently doing for promotion or how much your website is currently costing you, because I am looking at helping a customer fine tune their marketing plan and paring down costs for them, but I would never ask for detailed stats or specific account information until I had been hired.
I would ask them specifically what information they want in the reports. If they give you a straight answer this me reveal some of their motivation for having the reports. I would agree with most others in that this information is not relevant in the quite you are requesting.
Please Read The Forum Rules on Signatures.
My sense is that they want to check the performance to gauge how much "you know what you're doing" before they estimate the level of extortion to apply to the quote!!
Why don't you tell us the address of your current website? Then we can get a better picture of what needs to be done. Forget giving out your analytics info, it's not needed.
Last edited by weegillis; 10-15-2010 at 07:09 PM.
I am surprised that all of them are asking you this. I would think maybe one or two people might ask, but not everyone.
It is not standard practice to ask what kind of traffic you are getting to your website. That information will place a value on your business. It is upto you to decide if that is something you are willing to do. Especially if the requests are coming in from a posting you have made to a job board where your competition may have seen it.
There are other ways to know how much traffic a website is getting without requesting any information from you. I think it is a safe bet that the only information they should be requesting is details regarding the project in terms of design and perhaps general questions about the technology currently in use, or what may be used.
Otherwise, they don't know what they are doing. They shouldn't be asking.
Last edited by MrGamm; 10-16-2010 at 07:15 AM.