Wednesday, November 26, 2014

How Believing You Need a Website is Costing You Time and Money (part 1 of 3)

There is a good chance you have a website you love; it generates leads, it makes you money, it shows up on search queries, it is frequently maintained and you even receive compliments on its design and functionality. If this is you; congratulations! You don’t need to read the rest of this article; unless you…

Know someone who “believes” they need a website?

I have lost count over the years as to how many prospective clients contact me in panic mode saying “I need a website. How long will it take?” My first response is always the same “Why do you feel you need to have a website?” 6 out of 10 people will respond with “Because everyone says I need one. They say I’m losing money if I don’t.” Okay, there may be some truth to what “everyone” is saying; but I then ask “Do YOU want a website?” Usually, the answer is “I don’t know.” or “Not really. What do you think?”

What do I think? I think following the crowd because they said to, stinks. I think every person has the right to listen to, and act upon, their own gut judgment whether it is to do, or not to do. To quote a good friend of mine “No one should ever be “should” upon.”

I especially think that someone in this position; who is struggling to “believe” they need a website can find their own resolution by simply stating to themselves “I do NOT need a website.” Saying this a few times allows the statement to clear the back-n-forth mind-chatter of “What do I do? Should I? Should I not?” This will give the person the quite space they need to separate their true feelings from outside influences.

If one does not clear the mind-clutter the result could lead to procrastination in many areas of the business, one being marketing in general. If all marketing efforts are halted by this elusive website decision, then you guessed it the company will experience loss of visibility, momentum (which circles around to time), and ultimately money.

Once they can hear their own thoughts, and gut-reactions they will be able to answer the following questions honestly, for themselves:
  • I know who my ideal client is, the emotional traits of their struggles, and what they will experience after working with me. I share them here: _________.
  • The purpose of my website is to _____, and I will know it is working when _______.
  • When visitors arrive at my website they will take one of the following actions: _______. (we’re aiming for at least 3 different actions)
  • I understand an un-maintained website can do more damage than not having one at all. I am _____% committed to the on-going success of the website. (we’re aiming for 95 to 100% here)

These are great starting questions to help evaluate if you are ready for a website; now, later, or not at all. You will instinctively know, by how you answer the questions (easily, struggled, didn't answer) what the right choice is for you at this time.

I will state it. I truly believe that not every company needs a website. A website is only a fraction of the overall marketing strategy a business owner needs to consider.

I have declined clients who asked me to build them a website; when they didn’t need it or were not ready. Either way, I could not consciously invoice them for something that in the long run would just sit there doing nothing to help grow their business. Some clients went and had someone else built a website for them, others looked at me oddly, thanked me for my honesty, and we focused on alternative approaches.   

A business owner can have an online presence without the cost of creating and maintaining a website. In the next article I will share with you the: Top 4 Reasons Why You Don’t Need a Website.

Until then, happy marketing!

Chana Monahan
Greenhouse Graphics, llc. Where Ideas Grow


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