There’s a lot of mystery surrounding the creation of your small business website.
Like law or medicine, most people don’t know what goes into it (“Something with 1’s and 0’s?”) but eventually you’ll find yourself needing it.
Business owners tend to either hold a web designer’s services in reverence or dismiss us as basement-dwelling con artists who are charging bookoo bucks to do something they could probably do for free on Wix. (We think we lie somewhere in the middle, but that’s a different blog post altogether.)
During our CLEAR process, we try to create as honest and transparent a relationship as we possibly can from the very beginning. Today we’re going to demystify the way we execute our ideas (that is, yours and ours) and bring them to fruition.
Does Your Small Business Website Cover All the Bases?
These days, with do-it-yourself web building tools, it really is possible for anybody to build a website. But that’s a lot like saying, “With EZ Bake Ovens, anybody can bake a cake.” Yes, the thing you end up with will technically be a website (or a cake), but it won’t be anywhere near as good as a pro’s.
By building your own small business website, you’ll also be covering only a tiny portion of your business’s web-based needs. Because your web presence goes far beyond ‘having a website.’
That’s so important I’m gonna say it again: your web presence goes far beyond ‘having a website.’
Having a website for your small business is great—and you definitely need someone who can build one for you—but there are a lot more things your website needs than just a domain name. For instance…
Obviously, your small business website needs to have technology in order to work. You do need to have a domain name, server space, and a way to navigate the site.
If you’re a restaurant, you may want an interactive menu that lists prices and calorie counts. If you’re a trivia company, you may want a calendar that shows when and where all of your events will be taking place. If you’re a moving company or an insurance company, you’ll want a way for customers to contact you for their free quote.
A good web developer will be able to suggest awesome new tools and install them on your site in a way that impresses your customers. At this point, you’re probably thinking, “That all sounds great. What more could my business possibly need?”
Ooh, yass, this is where it starts to get fun!
The most amazing website in the world is useless if no one knows about it.
Marketing is all about bridging that gap so that your key demographic (that is, the people that need your product) knows you exist. Most people think of marketing as “advertising,” and advertising is important, but the real definition of marketing covers so much more.
Marketing is all about your reputation. So, yes, that includes getting the word (or website) out so that you actually have a reputation. But it’s also about making sure people see you the way you want them to see you (also known as your “brand”).
Search Engine Optimization. Customer Service. Advertising. Social Media. All of these work together to create your web presence. So, yeah, you absolutely need a website, but your web guy should also be in charge of making sure people can find it.
When we wrote our “Web Design 101” series a few years ago, we did an entire post on the Content & Language of your site, because we think it’s one of the most important (and most overlooked) aspects to website creation.
How great are you at writing? Do you know how to write in complete sentences? Do you know how to work SEO into your writing? Do you know how to do keyword research? Are you up-to-date on the best copywriting techniques to convert readers into customers?
If you answered “no” to many of these, you don’t need to feel shame or anything. But you should recognize that it’s a weak point of yours and hand it over to someone better qualified.
Most web developers are great with the “1’s and 0’s” of web design but not so much with the “making words and doing the sentence” thing. Hiring a web designer who can’t handle this side of your website leaves you having to come up with the content yourself or scrambling around to find another professional.
4. Graphic Design
Ooh, I told you it was about to get fun, didn’t I?
And, yes. Graphic design is different from website design and not every designer can do both.
Businesses grow and change all the time, meaning their needs grow and change all the time. Maybe you find yourself wanting a logo redesign. Or an eye-catching new business card. Maybe your restaurant or realty company wants to print out some snappy flyers or put out an ad to get more business.
Those are all problems that a graphic designer can solve.
And because all these things (logo design, business cards, flyers, advertising) fall under the “marketing” category, it makes sense to have a graphic designer who understands your brand and your website. Who understands them better than the same company that built them?
5. Small Business Consultation
Sometimes, you have questions that don’t exactly have web-based answers.
Maybe you’re growing as a business and don’t exactly know how to scale up. Maybe you have HR issues but no HR Dept.
A web guy working in those 1’s and 0’s between Dungeons & Dragons campaigns won’t be able to help you.
But a dedicated digital marketing company understands how every aspect of your business works together. A pay-per-click campaign brings customers to your website, where they are wow-ed by your brand and submit a quote. Your top-notch customer service delivered by a well-trained employee cement the deal and bam! You just made some money.
Customer acquisition is a delicate process, and a weak or missing link at any point can cause the entire thing to grind to a halt. A “web design” company that is more than just a web design company can advise you on the entirety of your business. Not just your url.
What it really comes down to is this: Do you consider yourself enough of a business expert to grow your business yourself? Or would you rather focus on doing what it is you do best and leaving the rest up to the pros?
At Clarity Creative Group, we believe that your focus should be on your business. And our focus? That’s on building your business, too! Over the years, we’ve built a dedicated staff who know how to build websites, create marketing campaigns, write blogs and articles, design logos, and manage businesses just like yours. And since your business needs all of these things, why not choose a one-stop shop that can deliver them all?
Clarity Creative Group is a digital marketing company located in beautiful Winter Springs, Florida. We really do think logo design is more fun than Dungeons & Dragons.