June 21, 2017

The 5 Ugly Truths about website design for small businesses

Strap yourself in for a ride because we are about to expose the ugly truth of website design for small businesses that will make you rethink how you business website works. If you have ever sat down with a web designer before, chances are you have run into one if not all these problems.

website design for small businesses is time-consuming

YouTube would have you believe that you can have a website built within 1 to 4 hours with no skills. Yes, that is completely possible, but hold your horses, let’s debunk this myth.

First, the person who can generally do this is someone who is, in fact, a dedicated small business web designer. That means it’s a person who income comes from building websites in most cases.

Also, keep in mind that while these videos exist, many of the designers don’t do any real design. Where is the part where they open up Photoshop and build a mock-up? Where is the part where they spend hours to customize the graphics?

It doesn’t exist because this person has a clearly defined goal to get a website up and running in as fast as possible.

website design for small businesses

Keep in mind you could do that the same thing with a car. I could find a bunch of seats welds them to some axles and wheels. Attach a small engine and you off the races. But are you really?

 

The first ugly truth is that website design for small businesses is sometimes tedious and other times boring at best. It requires a designer's eye to find the perfect matching fonts and images to create a site that produces results.

So next time you're paying a web designer, he or she is doing a ton of work that involves tasks you may not understand.

Most website designs plans need many professionals, not just one

Wait, are you telling me you can’t do it all? Well, I am paying you for a complete website design for small businesses.

Yes, but most designers are laser-focused professionals who are masters of code. They are not photographers, writers, graphic designers, marketing gurus nor will they make your coffee for you.

Most small business web designers focus on design. It’s a rare gift when you find one who has skills in all categories. If you do, please let me know because I’d like to take a picture of them and mount it next to a Big-Foot picture.

My own skill set includes graphic design, web design, and marketing with a wee bit of writing thrown in for good measure. I am not a photographer and never could be. Nor am I a master of marketing or the writing, which is why this is checked and checked again for errors. The point is, no one person is the master of all these different things and most web design companies will most likely sub out work to other personal freelancers who can complete the task.

Think of your website as building a home. You hire many professionals to get the job done the way you want it done. The budget will be your most limiting factor for building your dream site.

That’s also why this is the second ugly truth.

What’s your security and backup solution?

If I had to guess, I would say, you don’t have one. Like computers, websites need routine security and backups in place. A good backup solution in place from day one to prevent any downtime.

Most people will scour the web looking for the cheapest solution to build their site. But you have to understand that you get what you pay for. A person building your site for $200 is not going to set up any security or backup. Which means your website is completely open to attack.

But Patrick, can’t I solve that with simple plugins. Sure, you can! But do you understand how most websites get hacked? Does your website designer understand?

Most websites get hacked from plugins or themes that have are not updated in ages. As a matter of fact, it's the number one way that websites get hacked.

If you're not checking your website daily for then you are setting yourself up for failure.

You’ll change your mind more often than you think

If you think that a website is some static brochure that you put online and leave then you are misinformed.

If you don’t understand now that a website is a living thing, then I am not sure you will ever understand. Unlike your New Employee Handbook, your website should be updated often.

A marketing professional would likely tell you to test everything. Do you think that means just on the front page? Research how most companies spend millions of conversions on their website. After all, most website's purpose is to sell so if yours is not converting then what is it really up for?

But Patrick, our website is just there to do X. Well that’s great, but do you understand that you are most likely leaving money on the table?

Stop right now and go look at your current website if you have one (and if not, here is our contact form to get you started). Do you see problems with your current design? If you do, likely your clients do too.

The work on website designing for small businesses is never done

By now, you understand that your small business website design is never complete. You can get it to a stage that feels close to done but never finalized.

The work involved with getting a website for a small business completed should not deter you. Instead, it should show you what most web designers have to contend with many spinning plates when they take on your project.

A smart business owner knows a website is never complete. This is one of the reasons we offer a flat rate web design. And if you find one that is complete then it’s due to someone who is too narrow-minded what can be achieved with a well-designed site.

Hint, don’t let this be you.

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