Every local business should have their own website, but more so than that, they should also have their own webmaster. A decently talented web designer can bring the company website alive and make it a tool that can be far more than just a business card, it can bring in sales and new customers too.
Most small business websites that are in existence today fall far short of that goal. Of course it is very helpful if you can get ranked at the top of the search engines, but there are other aspects of getting your website to go to work for you.
Gone are the days where you could hire your neighbor’s teenage son and have him slap together a nice website. The entire process has become far more important than that, the online presence for your business deserves more tender loving care than the neighbor’s son can give inbetween playing Call Of Duty. It’s shocking but as much as 60% of small businesses have no website presence at all let alone a poor one.
Start by interviewing several local web design companies and have them show you real results. Just about anybody can make a nice looking website, but it has to work for you along with social media and directory placement as well, and this takes a professional to get the job done properly.
Have the prospective web companies show you from scratch how they have already achieved results for their clients. In other words, have them type in some of the key words that work for the client and have the company show you that this resulted in a high ranking. Just don’t be fooled by high rankings for keywords that nobody searches for – get them to prove that real people look for those terms too.
Also, you will want to see the results of their clients Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts, and how these tie back to the business’s website. It all ties in to your overall web strategy. When you see how all of these results fit together then you can justify paying their high fees, just make it very clear that it’s results you care about not just a pretty website. Then you can simply concentrate on getting ready to service all of those new customers these efforts are going to bring into your business.
Finally, don’t forget to ask them about how your website can or will be maintained in the future. Do they provide that service themselves, can they recommend someone. Or as far as they are concerned, is it a case of once they deliver the site the job is finished and they have no interest in the ongoing success of your site? After all, if they are so short sighted as to not see how much money you could be giving them in the future if they do great work for you, then maybe they aren’t the right people to give your money to right now.