Sales and Marketing of a web design business

This month’s newsletter has turned out to be about us talking about our web design business and the marketing issues we face. We also rely on our own website to get business via search engines like Google. Our challenges and the opportunities are similar for our current and potential clients so I hope some readers may identify with us. We welcome your thoughts, questions and feedback.

Major change to Google’s  Algorithm

We make use of Google Webmaster Tools to monitor the performance of our own website so it was a bit disheartening when we looked at our results for the past 28 days and we noticed a drastic decline compared to the previous 28 days.

I thought what happened. I quickly did a Google search for Somerset West Web Designers as well as Cape Town’s Coolest Web Designers. The first for practical reasons and the second for research reasons. I then stumbled upon a post of Facebook which confirmed that Google had a major Algorithm update recently.

Read more on this update from Search Engine Land for the technically minded by following this link:
Google confirms core search ranking algorithm update

If the link was disabled by your email program visit our website for link - see newsletter / blog section .

Google is now pushing for search results to me more relevant. Nobody wants to hear that he is no longer relevant or less relevant so my despondency levels grew, that is until this morning when I awoke afresh after a good night’s sleep.

I remembered that it had just been the Easter long weekend and that April will see another long weekend at the end of the month. This is great news for salaried people but not so great news for small businesses, not in the tourism industry. Each year during this time we see a major drop in our business. We have had a good March and April but we would like to have a little more business. We guess our target market also experiences a slump in business or they are fortunate enough to take a break and use spare money for a weekend getaway as opposed to investing in a website.

We still need to investigate Google’s new major update. For the past 10 years nothing has changed in what we are preaching regarding on how to get good search results. You can visit our website for past newsletters / blog entries to see we speak the truth.

Unhappy / Unrealistic clients

 We have had one or three unhappy clients during the last three months regarding search results. The story goes like this:

 We explain that indexing by Google takes a bit of time, you have to use your own content, make use of Google’s free tools, have to work at things like a blog, faq’s , testimonials, study the top websites in your industry to get a realistic benchmark on what is required to do well in search results. Either the unhappy clients do not listen or maybe the whole website /Google thing is just too much to take in at once. Maybe we should spend more time with new clients (inexperienced website owners ) to explain what is required to get results.

Often these unhappy clients meet another web designer who spins them a different , better sounding, storyline.

At the end of the day we are not miracle workers. Google works with logic / algorithm’s and not magic. We have always advised people to avoid black hat SEO like link farming. Getting good relevant links from quality websites could be a service we offer in future. It is difficult to justify the time spend / money needed by clients to pay for these services as results are not always immediately visible.

Sales representative or Google Ads?

Our minds have been on getting more clients regularly and we are considering appointing a sales representative who focuses on sales while we do the technical work. It requires a different mindset from sales. Alternatively we could again invest in Google Ads to get the same results without having to permanently employ someone with resulting permanent overheads. We are keen to give people opportunities but web design is a difficult industry. It’s not a get rich scheme. We have found very few people make it in this industry with a relative low barrier to entry and the resulting over supply of web designers.

We probably will go with Google Ads or a combination if we find the right person. But before we do that we need to perhaps refresh the look of our own website. It had not changed in a few years so maybe it’s time for a fresh look. We also need to read the text of our own websites and improve / make corrections, adjust current prices and consider our standard terms and conditions.

Yes we face the same issues as our clients / website owners. Perhaps there is an opportunity to offer these improvement services? With every problem in life there is an opportunity for someone to earn a living.

Trying new things

Besides doing the traditional better , (Content / Quality links) , we will be going back to the past / drawing board and consider which worked well for us in the past as well as consider new marketing avenues. Seeing our local competition read our newsletter as well we cannot share these details just yet.

That’s our newsletter for April!

Keep blogging / Keep working on your website and then expect results!


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