View Articles by Category
This isn’t backed by any hard data, but I’ll bet that if you asked artists, makers, and small business owners what the the most dreaded items on their to-do lists are, “find someone to help me get the website my business needs” would be right up there with “ask my accountant about my taxes” (or “find an accountant to ask about my taxes”).
Picking a web designer has a lot in common with buying a car: it can be a big financial commitment, the options are overwhelming, and at the end of the deal you often aren’t sure whether you got what you wanted to buy or what the person on the other side of the deal wanted to sell you. Fortunately in both cases it’s pretty easy to pick out the good guys, because they’re the ones asking you the most questions.
There’s a scene in the movie There’s Something About Mary that has Ben Stiller’s character picking up a hitchhiker. This hitchhiker brings with him a duffle bag that is suspiciously similar in size and shape to a human body, and a scheme to hit it big by shaving a minute off of the popular 8-minute abs workout: Seven. Minute. Abs. He is convinced that people will be falling all over each other at the chance to save a minute. And he was right: according to an unscientific Google search the fastest ab workout out there today is 2 minutes. Now we’re talking.
I promise, this is related to building small business websites.
It’s become almost a matter of faith that every business needs a website. It’s so easy, there’s really no excuse not to have one, right? I agree that the vast majority of businesses can benefit from having a presence on the internet that they control, with the tiny little stipulation that a bad website can be worse than none at all.
Your website needs to reflect the strengths, values, and unique selling proposition of your business; it needs to be kept up to date and be filled with content that is valuable to your customers; and its design needs to meet the expectations of your customers. This is beginning to sound less and less easy.