Answer: Nothing compared to the cost of a bad website!
I once read an article which stated “What’s the cost of a Good Education?” to which the reply was “Nothing compared to the cost of a bad one”. The reason I raise this topic is because it’s so important to try to get a focus on like for like.
This week I was contacted by a business owner from Dundee, he told me he needed help to market his business online, which is the service we supply. Whilst talking to him I started to assess his website and asked him various questions. Who was his target audience? What was the role of the website in his business? What was it bringing to him business-wise, was it saving him time, saving him money, did it speed up processes? etc.
As I was assessing his site, I could see how many areas could be improved. I could see the focus was wrong, it didn’t attract his audience and had few chances of attracting other prospects. The whole site was effectively written from the inside out and would never be attractive to his audience. It was also poorly coded. There was code missing which is important for the search engines and would be detrimental to being found.
Dissecting his website piece by piece, suddenly the light bulbs start to go on and he could see where his site was failing. He started to see where his site was working against him and how it lacked the ability to deliver results.
Family and Friends are great but not always best for Straight Talking Advice
This client also asked friends, employees and family what they thought of his website – “Great” they all said. What did he expect? If I want advice on a sore tooth, I’ll talk to a dentist, not friends and family. If I want advice on building a house, I’ll talk to an architect, not friends and family.
If you are thinking of having a website built, talk to a website developer. If you want a website that will also deliver more business, talk to a website developer who also gives online business advice and strategies – don’t talk to friends and family. They are all nice people, but you need the hard business facts.
Like for Like
The reason for this blog was to try to point out like for like. Because two people can build a website and they both look okay doesn’t mean that they are the same. I wouldn’t be able to point out good jewellery from fake, but a jeweller would. A website has many levels, the design, the words, the images and the scripts that run the forms and moving images.
Did the programmer have the expertise to write code to tell the search engines what to do with the site, how often to come back and catalogue the information and where all the information is? How will the site work on different browsers and different platforms of Mac, PC? etc.
It get’s deeper and deeper the more you look and this is the difference between knowing the right questions to ask when assessing a site, and not. Most business owners don’t know what they are buying into and sadly their site does nothing for them and they don’t have any expectations for it to do so.
This is completely unacceptable to any business person. The web should be a main source of revenue. It should be a major part of your strategy. It can bring you business and this is why many traditional marketing channels are dying out, such as Yellow Pages, Thomson Local, Trade magazines, etc. It is important you fix a budget and implement a strategy in order to get a measured return.
This is Toltech’s area of expertise, We can help!