Did you know that 70% of small business owners don't have a website?
I would even suggest that of the 30% of small business owners that have a website, many of them are ineffective- meaning they don't bring in business or make life easier for the business owner.
Before you build or purchase a website, you need to understand what the purpose of the website is, in order to make sure that you are building or purchasing the RIGHT website for you! A website designer, builder, or service it not always looking out for YOUR best interest! (Although let me just say I have worked with some fabulous people.)
Here are a couple of stories that may illustrate my point:
Story #1: It's all inclusive! I spoke with a small business owner who was paying $99 a month for a website service. $100 a month is expensive- but completely worth it if it really is all inclusive- problem was- it wasn't. They claimed they did "SEO" but they really just submitted it to a few search engines for free. Her website wasn't showing up on Google, it wasn't easy to update, and it looked like it was from the early 90s. The website was actually TURNING AWAY business! She got reports that people liked her- but got an unprofessional feel when they visited her website!
When she started down the process of changing over her website- she also found another hiccup. All inclusive had included her business domain name. Problem was- they registered it under THEIR name- meaning they actually owned her business web address. Would they give it her? Of course! For the hefty fee of over $300. (for those of you that don't know- domain registration is usually about $ 15 a year!)
Story #2: It's all your fault. I have worked with fantastic small business owners and therapists in private practice who are convinced that they are doing something wrong. They have been putting hours and and hours into trying to update, correct, fix their website only to be left with something that looks unprofessional and does WONKY things. Yes, I said WONKY! They have contacted the service that they are using- only to be told by the customer service people that they must be doing something wrong- or it is all your fault your website is wonky.
They get connected with me for technology coaching- hoping I can help teach them how to be more effective- only to find out they are using bad technology. They have been using an outdated website building service on the Internet that hasn't been updated in years! I end up advising them to go with a product that actually works- and all of a sudden they find they are a "whiz" at technology.
Zynny Says: Maybe You Aren't Bad at Technology, Maybe You Are Using Bad Technology."
Most small business owners need a solution that shouldn't cost more than $25 a month. (Want to see examples of what you can get for less than $25 a month- check out Why I love my website VIDEO!) If you do have some specialized needs- make sure you understand what you are paying for! There are some really great "techy" people that don't know marketing or how to talk to you in a way that you can connect with.
Follow these rules when exploring websites:
1. Have you business goals in mind.
2. Start with something cheap and easy- but professional. As you gain understanding and comfort you will be better able to evaluate the big ticket options.
3. Remember, website design seldom includes custom content. You need content that is customized to your particular business. Learn more about that in "Why can't someone just build my website for me?"
I hope this helps you understand some of the basic things to think about before you build your website so you can be informed and successful!
Are you a helper or healer looking to learn more about building a therapist website? Check out our Website in 30 days program that breaks down building a website into manageable pieces that will teach you about marketing, writing content, getting your website on Google, and using your website to make your business run smoother- all in little bite sized pieces that won't stress you out! For just $300 you get this video series and fabulous workbook that will take you step by step through the entire process. Learn more about how to build a therapist site here.