So, you’re looking at your website and you’re thinking, “You know… I feel like I should be getting more from you…” Or maybe you’ve just started a business and you know you need a website, but you don’t have the slightest clue where to start. Whatever your situation, it may be tempting to just call up a local web design firm and start firing away. A GOOD web design firm, however, is going to start firing back! Here are some questions you should be prepared to answer in order to make the most of your consultation… and maybe even point yourself in the right direction.
- First and foremost, what do you need for your site to do? Every website has a job, whether it is currently performing that job adequately or not. What job do you need your site to do? If you simply need a website that builds some credibility to support your internal sales team, then you may not need to be terribly aggressive with your marketing efforts (on- or off-page). However, if you need a site that sells your service for you—a site that delivers solid leads ready to be qualified—you’re going to need to put some serious thought into both your on-page funnels and your off-page activities.
- What pain do you solve for your customers? Why should people choose you over your competitors?
- What are your growth goals? What kind of revenue are you looking to be bringing in by the end of the year? At the end of 2 years? How many new clients do you need in order to reach those goals? If your business thrives on consistent monthly revenue from delighted customers, how much do you need? How fast do you need to get there?
- What is your traffic currently like? Do you have Google Analytics installed on your current site? Where are people currently falling out of your funnel? What is your conversion rate (how many people reach out to you after viewing your site)? We find that a solid conversion rate is about 3%, meaning that for every 1000 visitors, 30 of them reach out to you. This is totally doable with some fairly aggressive marketing, but it may not make sense to be incredibly aggressive right off the bat. Once we know what your traffic is like, we can start to pinpoint the areas that need improvement, whether that means improving the site itself, starting some paid advertising, engaging in blogging and social media, or increasing search engine optimization (SEO).
- What is your close rate? If you get 10 good leads, how many of those can you close? Do you know why or why not?
- How are people finding you? What are people searching for when they start the process of researching a problem that your company solves? This is a good time to start thinking of misconceptions that your site could clear up.
- What is one new client worth to you? If you’re a custom home-builder, your site and all of its marketing activities might pay for themselves with 1 new sale. However, if your service is simpler and less expensive, you might need 100 new clients in order to see a solid return on your investment.
- Who are your competitors and what are they up to? What marketing activities are your competitors participating in that you need to be keeping up with [at the very least]—or exceeding?
- What do you know about your target market? More importantly, have you got rough buyer personas put together? What about negative personas?
- How involved is your sales process? Is making the choice to use your company’s services a long, drawn-out process full of research and comparison shopping? Is there a board of directors or other higher-ups who must be briefed before a final decision can be made? Or is your service simpler and easier to choose? What can someone expect once they fill out your contact form or pick up the phone to call you?
Ask Not How Much Your New Website Will Cost, But How Much Your New Website Is Worth To You
Bonus! The most important question is not “How Much Does A Website Cost?”—the most important question is “How Much Is A New Website Worth To Me?” The reason for this is that your website and the surrounding activities are going to be a percentage of your marketing budget—and these days, this should be a healthy chunk! (Check out my article about Digital Marketing vs. Traditional Marketing!) You are going to get what you pay for here. You are going to get back what you put in. If you want a $500 website, you can probably find someone to do it, but it’s highly unlikely you’re going to get much more than $500 back from it. Doug makes a really good analogy about road signs in "How Much Does A Website Cost?" Sure, you got a great deal on the site, but it's like putting up a roadsign in a desert—no one knows it even exists.
A solid website that does a job effectively is not a one-off commodity. You don’t just build it and then let it sit there. The kind of website that effectively sells your services is almost a living, breathing organism. It is constantly evolving. You’re constantly publishing fresh content. You’re constantly monitoring its progress and pruning and adding and always, always, ALWAYS trying to make it better.
Additionally, you’re always working to point people to it so it CAN do its job. You’re posting blog articles and engaging with users on social media and monitoring review sites and participating in all manner of [white-hat] SEO techniques—all to give your site its best chance of selling your services for you.
Don’t worry if you don’t have all of these answers ready for your first phone call. Many of these are things that we can help you calculate. However, you should have already started thinking about these, and the more of these you can answer, the faster we will be able to help you!
If you’ve started thinking about these questions and are ready to talk through some of them, give Waypost a call at (864) 288-6162 or contact us online. We’ve helped companies all over the country generate leads and grow their businesses, and we are ready to help yours too.