The Greatest Website Misconception That Costs Businesses Thousands Of Dollars
30 April 2014
Are you making the same mistake as most other businesses when it comes to designing, developing and launching a website?
Over the past 10 years we have worked with a lot of different businesses and if there’s 1 common theme we continually come across it’s that people honestly believe when they build a website and launch it, people will automatically flock to it and sales will start rolling or the phones won’t stop ringing with people making enquiries. Sounds very peachy doesn’t it, almost too good to be true. That’s because it is.
If it was that easy then more than 50% of start ups right now wouldn’t be failing.
That’s not to say that a successful website is a lot of hard work. It’s simply an ongoing, testing, learning and nurturing process.
Most businesses though are simply paying the smallest amount of money possible for a website designer or developer to create a website, get it online as quick as possible and are then expecting to make money from it just like that. The concept of paying minimal amounts and getting maximum returns doesn’t work in any industry, for any type of service.
Lets take an accountant for example. If you have the cheapest Accountant in your area, there’s a good chance they are in the bottom 20% of accountants in your area, as they won’t have the time or the funds for the required ongoing education, they won’t have the most experienced team and they may not have the latest and greatest software to work on your finances.
This is not to say that you won’t find a great company at an awesome price, but it’s very unlikely to happen unless you have a referral from someone who knows otherwise. If you’re shooting in the dark and just selecting a company based on price alone, you’ll almost certainly lose out in the end. But there is a way to get what you want in the Website Design industry, but more about that later.
As the old saying goes, “You only get what you pay for.” If the cheapest quote is what you’re searching for, then you’re likely to get an outcome which mirrors exactly that. A website is a marketing tool, therefore it should turn out to be an investment – just ask Amazon, Officeworks or even your local Pizza place. They spent a few thousand to get a website and received tens and possibly hundreds of thousands in return. The only time a website is NOT an investment is when it doesn’t work, and guess which ones don’t usually work. The $100 to $1500 websites, oh and the build it yourself websites. You wouldn’t jump into the stock market without any education and expect a return, so why is it that so many people think they can build their own websites and get a return.
The biggest answer we get is, we can’t or couldn’t afford it. Which is quite weird to us, as it’s an investment. If you don’t put some money into the stock market or the marketing of your business you can’t possibly expect a return. If we were to offer you a $20 note for every $10 note you give us, how many times would you want to do that? Well that’s marketing…. you spend X amount to get XX amount in return.
Lets do some quick math….
You spend $0 on a DIY website. After 12 months you start noticing that it’s just not bringing any phone calls or sales to your business. The only people looking at your website are the people you give business cards out to and even then, most of them don’t take the time to check out your website. Your website isn’t ranking very well in Google, if at all and things just aren’t turning out how you planned. And we’re sure you planned on making a profit, or some type of impact on people.
What about if you spend $3500 on a professionally built website. After 12 months you should be well on your way to making your money back which you spent on the website and possibly a whole lot more. And this will continue on for quite a few years until eventually, you’ll need to update your website to keep those new customers happy.
Let us give you an example of a recent website we designed and developed for a client of ours in Western Sydney….
We finished a website about 6 or 7 months ago now for a brand new home start up. In that time it has received over 10,000 visitors and more than 40 online sales at an average of $220 per online sale, and that’s not including over the phone sales, as we don’t have access to this data. That’s $8800 which has more than covered the cost of the website with additional funds left over for ongoing business expenses and marketing. The website isn’t slowing down either, it’s picking up from a Facebook presence of more than 2400 likes, in less than 6 months!! In 12 months this business should have made roughly $17,000 worth of online sales and getting close to 5000 Facebook likes. That’s a great return on investment for any business in it’s first year when the stats say most businesses don’t make any money for the first 6-12 months.
So, what does this have to do with the Greatest Website Misconception?
To best describe what we are talking about lets throw in a metaphor…. Launching a website without an ongoing marketing process, or even a means of telling potential clients about it, is like moving to a new country and expecting to make friends by sitting at home everyday and waiting for the doorbell to ring. People simply aren’t going to know how or where to find you.
Just building a website and throwing it online won’t make the slightest difference to your business if people don’t know how to find your website, or that it even exists in the first place. So many businesses today spend $99 – $2000 on a website, make it look nice, put it online then sit back and wait.
This simply doesn’t work – we know, we’ve been building websites for more than 10 years!
A good example is how you ended up reading this article….. You more than likely found Emocean Studios by searching Google, through a Social Media site such as Facebook, Twitter or Google +, you may have spotting some of our advertising or you may have received a referral from someone you know. This is how we’ve made ourselves easy to find. And it’s working, because you’re here right now reading our blog article(s).
So what can you to avoid falling victim to the greatest misconception of a website? Here’s 3 things you must do when searching for the perfect website or design agency to suit your needs.
1. Make sure you ask them lots of questions, most importantly, “What’s the next step once our website goes live?” Asking this question will tell you what sort of service, advice or information they have to take you to the next stage which is getting visitors to your website.
2. Listen out for a question relating to your business goals or what you wish to achieve by developing your new website. If they don’t ask you about your business or website goals, how can they possibly have your best interests in mind and how can they possibly achieve those goals for you? They don’t even know what the goals are!
3. And lastly, ask your potential web design agency for the details of a current client who has had recent success from their services. This will help put some proof in the pudding. If they aren’t willing to do that, ask for some case studies, testimonials or examples of recent success they’ve had.
We’d love to hear your ideas on how to find the best web or design agency to help achieve your online business goals.