A huge percentage of the website projects I build are “from scratch” rebuilds of websites that have gotten old and stale over time because they were not properly maintained.
This is a big problem for small businesses.
Here’s what typically happens
A business hires someone to build their website for what usually ends up being thousands of dollars. That person finishes the website, which is usually exactly what they need at the time, then hands over the keys to the business owner.
At this point, the business owner typically says “I can handle it from here,” but guess what – in my experience 9 out of 10 won’t do it, and honestly shouldn’t be. An experienced web professional is going to be 10x more efficient at this, and business owners should not be wasting their time trying to hassle with the technical ins and outs of a website.
So this is how the scenario ends. The small business typically grows, adds new services, pricing changes, contact information changes, and more, but the website sits there and NEVER gets updated for years, because the original creator is on to other projects.
The business owner is then frustrated because they cannot update the website themselves, and they either can’t get hold of the original creator, or they end up spending thousands of dollars, AGAIN, to update it with several years of changes (rightfully so – this stuff isn’t easy).
So in a few years, your website ends up looking like this:
Instead of like this:
And that’s where the problem starts. Your website should be a growing and living business asset that keeps up with your business and the latest technology, not a one-time project that becomes a pain point. When this happens, you get embarrassed to send people to your website at all, and…
Your website becomes a liability
Thinking of your website as a “one-time project” is why so many small business websites are so stricken with errors and incompatabilities, not to mention poor user experiences.
Web technology changes over time, very rapidly.
If you’re not updating the software, content, and technology on your website over time, then you’re not only not putting your best foot forward, but you’re also risking losing business due to factors such as:
- Lost search engine traffic (Google hates stale websites)
- Poor user experiences due to outdated design
- Poor brand alignment
- Broken contact forms
- Old phone numbers
- Outdated email addresses
- Lost trust from square one
- Hack attempts (hackers LOVE stale websites)
- And the list goes on and on…
As an example, I was on a website recently checking for a quote on some work on my car.
The contact form would not work, the email address was wrong, and the phone number was out of date… The only way I was able to get in touch with the company was that somehow Google had their correct phone number.
I ended up going with someone else because I just didn’t have a lot of trust in that business to begin with. If a business can’t have enough care to update their phone number and email address on their website, should I trust them to work on my car?
And here’s the greater mystery.
Ongoing website maintenance isn’t all that expensive or time consuming, and it can even be a profit center for your business.
You can typically contract this for a couple hundred bucks a month, or even less depending on your needs (our plans start at $69 / month).
As a business owner, a thousand dollars a year is absolutely worth it to fit into your budget to put your best foot forward online. You’ll absolutely lose business otherwise.
Today’s generation also demands technology
Staying in touch with technology and the latest website trends will only continue to grow in importance as the money spending population gets younger and younger.
Millenials don’t like to talk on the phone. They don’t like to write checks. They don’t want to get bills in the mail and they certainly don’t want jump through hoops to do business with you.
Technology is your friend. Your website and web presence is the FIRST thing people will look at when deciding whether or not to do business with you.
Invest in it. Hire someone (us even!) who can keep your website up to date and make sure you’re allowing your customers to do business with you the way THEY prefer, not the way you prefer.
You’ll catch a lot more of them that way and you’ll be able to take pride in your website in the process.