Written by Brian Cray on September 16th, 2009
There's a problem when your new client tells you "I want a website." This might be music to your ears because it means money in your bank, but it represents an undercurrent that's sweeping away the web's potential, and your potential earnings.
Reading into the phrase "I want a website," I hear "I want a website and I don't really know why." Since your client doesn't know why, they will pay for a website designed by the lowest bidder because all bidders make websites.
But not all bidders solve problems.
Professional and experienced web professionals don’t build websites. They solve business problems using the web. If your client says "I want to build a better relationship with my customers" they will pay for the person who can best solve their problem, which probably won't be the lowest bidder.
It's the web professional's job to educate the "I want a website" crowd on the benefits of having a website before providing an estimate. Through initial discussion identify their business problems and then outline how you plan to solve them. Make sure your clients know all that you're actually doing for them. I bet cost will become less of an issue.
If you're the web professional who at this point is saying "That might be true for bigger clients, but I deal with many small businesses that are always thinking about cost," let's build problem/solution scenarios for a good ol' fashioned mom and pop shop.
- Generates new leads = increased profit
- Cross- and upsells current customers = increased profit
- Answers frequently asked questions for customers = decreased cost (someone has to be available to answer customer questions otherwise)
- Raises perceived brand value = increased profit
You see, once you build that website they'll begin sending everyone to their website. It's now their primary marketing & sales channel. Over time much of their new business will be driven from their website. Are you clients not willing to pay more for that?