April 2, 2021

Not Simply A Vendor

I’m often referred to as a vendor, particularly by larger organizations. That’s understandable–I do provide a service offering, usually for a fixed amount of time and money. The organization outsources design and/or web development efforts to me, much in the same manner as they would outsource their IT needs, security, or legal assistance. But every time I’ve been referred to as a vendor, I can’t help but think: “I’m not simply a vendor, I’m your design partner.

The term vendor evokes a market, where some visitors come to find something specific, and if there’s multiple similar options, they’ll typically look into factors like cost and quality of craftsmanship. Other visitors come to browse, knowing that they want to walk away with something but they don’t quite know what that special something is yet; they’ll know it when they see it. In my design practice, I strive to be the vendor for both types of customer. If a client comes to me with a specific problem that they need to address (say, they need to implement a new branding system across their website), they can trust that my proposal will be fair, accurate, and realistic. If a client comes to me knowing that they’d like to redesign their outdated website but don’t know where to start, I’ll work with them to determine the best approach. Sometimes that means taking a step back and tackling the brand identity and content strategy first, or just gathering new photo and video content; either way, I take a look at your current materials with a fresh eyes and provide a strategic path forward for a new website.

I’m passionate about design and building stellar websites, which is why I try not to lock myself into a specific method, niche, or visual trend. By practicing bespoke design, I’m able to draw from various wells of knowledge and experience to craft websites that fit the needs of each individual project. My project scopes and design agreements are deliberately left open for wiggle room and as many revisions as it takes to build a design that not only meets, but exceeds your vision for the project. When you work with me, I dedicate my attention and efforts to getting the job done right. That means open communication, weekly check-ins, and a collaborative approach that ensures you’re informed and involved in the process every step of the way.

Much like approaching a booth at a market, my initial introduction is “how can I help you?” But unlike a vendor, my wares aren’t limited to what you see in front of you. My customized approach means I can tailor a solution specific to your goals, not pigeon hole you into a tiered set of packages that may not be the best fit. If you’re looking to start a new design project, whether it’s creating a new logo or redesigning your website—I’d love to chat! Reach out to me here, and I look forward to meeting you.

About Mary-Ann Zykin

Mary-Ann Zykin is an experienced freelance designer based in Houston, TX who specializes in custom web design, WordPress web development, and branding.

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