Get a website for a buck and “grow your business”!
We have all seen the commercials for web builders that can skyrocket your business to the heavens all with a click or two. Some even within in hour! Well, you know that old adage if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is?
There’s a sucker born every minute. ~ David Hannum (NOT P.T. Barnum)
In my 20+ years of consulting sole proprietors and small businesses, part of my job has been to weed through the misinformation and hype. Much to many client’s dismay — and disappointment. There are way too many “business models” that rely on what the buyer (a.k.a. you) doesn’t know to make a sale. Boooo!
Today’s post is for those who launched their websites only to find their sites are under-performing, not producing, not getting traffic or conversions.
How to Grow Your Business Blunders
And links to my previous articles to help you tackle these blunders!
- Believing that a website alone is going to grow your business. And not being willing to make the appropriate and necessary investments. In time and funding. Websites are not a passive endeavor. If not setup properly, structured for speed, user-friendliness and mobile your beautiful new website will not be effective. Nor will it get found. (Oh, and don’t believe the SEO hype.)
- Not investing in a content strategy. Whether this means you learning to be a better writer and carving out the time to do so, or hiring a copywriter, consistently added valuable content is a must. Not just content for the sake of content. Content that showcases your expertise and reflects your command of your industry and market. Content that accentuates your experience and methodologies is literally your best sales person!
- Going through the motions on social media. I’m guilty of this one. I post to my socials when I have a new blog post. I’ll also retweet something here or there. That’s about it. So I’m stating up front I’m not practicing what I am preaching on this blunder. But we’re talking about growing your business, not mine. I’m blessed that I am kept busy with clients who’ve been with me for decades and their referrals. For you, being involved, engaging and commenting on social media is a ticket to increased visibility.
- Underestimating your About You page. Too many try to sound all big and “corporeatey”. Boring! Talk about why you started your business. How you enjoy running it. What are your passions? What is important to you? Rewrite your About page in the first person as though you are talking to that one individual on the other side of the screen. Sprinkle in some personal details to introduce the human being behind your business! People do business with people; people they like.
- Ignoring the data and analytics available to you to determine what is going on, what’s not happening and what your next move should be. Analytics can tell you everything from SEO, competition, performance and so much more. There is no guessing when having a website. The data is there to guide your business plan. Use it.
- For eCom sites having unexceptional “me-too” products, photos and descriptions combined with noncompetitive pricing and shipping costs spells failure. It is not a build it and they will come online environment. Make your products unique in some way with gorgeous photos and descriptions that have visitors jumping for the buy button! Then, don’t doom the purchase with outlandish shipping costs — that’s a deal breaker. For eCommerce success having a brand people can relate to (tell your story — see blunder #4) and be proud to purchase from is golden!
- Closed minds and lack of desire to learn. Yeah, sounds a bit harsh, right? But this is the primary blunder I’ve witnessed that prevents website owners from growing their business. While they may be the best in their industry off-line, not approaching their website program with an open mind leads to wasted time and dollars. So many are not up to the challenge that the above 6 items detail. Their lack of curiosity to embrace and learn about best practices causes stagnation. Always looking for that quick, easy and least expensive solution and making important decisions based on that criteria alone is a recipe for failure. Online isn’t easy, it isn’t fast and while being cost conscious is important for any business, it costs money.
Take the Time, Spend the Money — and Thrive!
I’ve lost count of the number of folks I’ve coached and worked with over the past decades. Those who embrace my advice thrive. Those that think it to be too much work see minimal results. Then there are others who just don’t want to spend the money. They see no value in the needed tools and ongoing necessary guidance and advice. Sadly, those folks fail. Every time.
While the Internet offers vast opportunity for us little guys, that doesn’t minimize what is required to grab your piece of the pie. Most of the time it is a fear of failure that paralyzes folks from making the right decisions for the right reasons. I guess that is why some are more suited to running a business than others. You have to “have a set” and look failure right in the eyes and dare it to come for you. Tougher yet, you also have to be willing to be humble and realistic about your own skills and approach.
Far better is it to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure… than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy nor suffer much, because they live in a gray twilight that knows not victory nor defeat.
No matter how much you think you know, you just don’t know enough to succeed. After all this time I am still constantly reading and learning. I am brutally aware of what I still do not know. That is the nature of this beast called online business. One thing for sure is I will never rest on my laurels.
Website ROI won’t happen just by osmosis. By focusing on just the 7 blunders above you will increase your chance for success exponentially. Now get to work!
At your service,