It’s a very common expression in web design, your site is either making money or losing money, and nothing in between. We say it all the time, but let’s explore that further. Why is that the case??
There are many ways a great site is making you money. The easiest is tangibly through e-commerce. You have to have a well coded, great user experience store, and a great product, and you could be making money hand over fist online. You can’t just build it and they will come though. There needs to be a solid marketing plan in place around the site, a good business model, and something that people want and need.
Well, I’m professional services you say, so it doesn’t apply? Not so, professional service firms, you are making money with a great site as well. First off, lead generation. 99% of you service firms are making money with your site through lead generation. A compelling story about your company, a professional design, and an easy to navigate site will go a long way. Depending on what you do, the site can be much more complex with functionality. But the goal is probably the same, get potential clients to think you are the best, and contact you for service. With a great online presence, you are WAY in front to achieving that goal. How many potential clients are grabbing your business card too, and going straight back to the office to look you up?? More than you think I would bet, and your site analytics can tell you that.
The bottom line is, with a great online presence, the site is directly or indirectly making you money, no question about it.
If you have a terrible, dated, unprofessional site out there, you are losing money, period. Too often, clients think they can continue to wait on redesigning when the time is right, or their business is cash flowing a little better. But the truth is, you are not just “doing well without a great site,” you are missing a huge opportunity cost, and likely losing leads every day if you have a bad impression online.
No site to speak of is an even worse impression. It makes the user frustrated they can’t find you to learn a little more. It makes your SEO results up to the whim of that one news story you were in three years ago, or possibly that bad review you got by the one crazy client you had in ’97. You have to get it done, and get it done right, or you are losing money. Remember the guy who took your business card at the networking event? They went back to look you up that evening and may have even tossed your card, wondering, “how can this person not have a web site, it’s 2012!”
Just because you don’t realize you are losing money, and it isn’t directly flowing away from your bank account, doesn’t make it so. You are losing a measurable amount of money that should be flowing in. We know this from typical immediate growth results when re-launching a site for a client. Why do the results show, even when we had a decent site out there before? Because you now have a more professional site, better user experience for your clients, better SEO optimization, thought through mobile and tablet functionality, and results are going to come from that, in the form of more revenue, directly or indirectly.
No In Between
Once again, you always fall on one side or the other. Your web site is a great addition to your company and your marketing presence. Or it is a hindrance to it, or simply non-existent, in which it’s a massive opportunity cost to your firm. Understanding this is the first step towards success.
Be on the right side.
-Written by Anthony Davis