Despite what you may think, hit websites are still not simple to create. Sure, the TV ads might make the choosing, buying and renewal of a website simple but none of these three actions has anything to do with making your website a success. So I've come up with an analogy that'll help you appreciate what a thoroughbred website looks like and what a website that's, well, pony looks like.
I do love a good advert. A few nights ago I watched an ad on TV for Squarespace; an empowering, right-on, TV advert of an executive who uses a website to take control of her future recruitment prospects so she may leave a sinking ship. Yet this kind of dream being sold to us through the TV can only ever hope to be the very start of a story. In the TV ad we simply don't have the time to explore the rest of our exec's story - how she moved beyond the buying of a website (the sole purpose of the ad's entirety) and put the website infront of the faces that matter. Ultimately winning, one assumes, the job that lets her exit a failing business.
But it's simply not enough just to have a website - winning with a website means having to use it.
These are heavyweight, expensive ads, directed by heavyweights and featuring big names and strong performances. So, it follows that these adverts have ended-up convincing viewers that just having one of their websites is enough to win. No. That's the wrong conclusion for you to reach. No matter which company the advert is for, whether it's Wix, GoDaddy, Squarespace, 1&1 or [insert present-day poster-child], what no 20 second ad slot will be able to show you is how our subject moves from acquiring a website to building the website.
What do you build a website from? It's a fair question. When I first started building websites back in 2002, I would have answered that websites were built from HTML. Today, in 2019, although my inner geek would still be content answering HTML, I would have to answer that websites are actually built from content; ie meaningful, relevant words and attractive, helpful media. Using the right content in your website is incredibly important yet building the thing is still not the whole story because:
Ultimately, in order to win you must first compete.
What all the website-selling ads, which have streamed into your consciousness, have in common is that they're all about winning, getting the result and achieving success. But, unless you compete, you won't stand a chance of winning. The TV ads forget to tell you that there's absolutely nothing they sell you that can help you compete. So, here's my second question and it's a biggie. It's the question that many will come unstuck answering:
How do you compete with a website?
Pleasingly, the answer isn't to be found deep in the HTML but out in the management of the website. I want to boil this right down and, using analogy instead of metaphor, give you what the TV adverts can't.
You don't buy a thoroughbred racehorse just to look at it in the paddock. If you don't race it, your investment will lose its power, shape, form and value and, so, lose interest. To only way that your racehorse can win, hold its value and its appeal is if you train it to win and make it compete.
You don't own a racehorse and expect to ride it home to victory yourself. You, as the owner, have a team that does this for you. That winning team looks much like this: Breeder; Owner; Trainer; Stables; Groom; Jockey; Vet; Farrier; Saddler.
In our thoroughbred website analogy, Squarespace would be the breeder and you'd be the owner but it takes more people to compete and win. Think about your website as if it were a thoroughbred; shine a spotlight upon each of the highlighted equestrian roles and consider if you have the right people working on your website to make it a winner and not a dog's dinner.
Take a look at your own website and ask yourself if you have anyone caring for and riding it. Does the website have a pedigree? What did you pay for it. How good is the stable where your website resides? Do you ever exercise your website? When was the last time a professional gave it a healthcheck? Have you ever truly entered it into a race and do you even know which races you should be entering to stand a chance of winning?
Perhaps you need a trainer more than you realise. Call us - we've a great track record and train websites to be winners. In a business sector where there's no such thing as a dead cert, we're able to distinguish between a website that's good for glue and one that's going for gold.
Spot on Steve. I couldn't agree more.
One of the major things that I think needs to be understood is what exactly you want the website to do. Unless you have a target, how likely is it that you will hit it? Far too many think they simply need a website (well have have a webste, don't you?) without thinking about what it is you want it to achieve.
These website providers do not in any way help or guide you in this. I know from experience that this is top most in Steve's mind.
If you want a website, then go to 1&1, GoDaddy etc. If you want a website that actually achieves what you want it to do, stick with a professional like Steve at Sub@omic.
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