I’ve heard it repeatedly:
I decided to write this blog post because it’s easy for businesses to get tunnel vision when it comes to their corporate website. It’s easy to think “hey, our website doesn’t generate any leads for us, so it’s just not that important”. But thinking this way is a mistake. You need to get a bigger vision for your website.
Don’t think in merely cost and ROI terms because there are many things that are hard to measure but are still important. In other words, an old website has a lot of hidden costs to take into account.
In order to provide you a more complete picture of your website, my purpose in writing this blog is to describe 3 of these hidden expenditures. These 3 are rather important, but there are many more that I might discuss in a later post. So, let’s begin.
In the San Francisco region, Austin is the owner of Commercial Care, a business that manages commercial real estate. Twenty property managers, a director of operations, a bookkeeper, and two salespeople make up his staff. The business is thriving, but Austin has observed that his pipeline hasn’t been as robust as it once was. He employs capable salesmen that put in a lot of effort, but lately it seems as though their work has been “second choice” in the deals they’ve been working on. If things doesn’t change soon, Austin is starting to worry that he might have to fire some of his property managers.
Austin is a kind boss who goes above and beyond for his employees, but many have observed that he doesn’t appear to pay attention to criticism. It seems as though he only recently learned a few business fundamentals and is unwilling to try anything new. Although several of his employees have voiced worry that the company’s outdated website is harming sales, Austin doesn’t believe this to be the case. He doesn’t pay close attention to feedback, thus he has missed several important cues from Charles, his main salesman. Although Charles has tried to convince Austin that their outdated website is a contributing factor in their recent loss of business, Austin doesn’t think potential building owners ever visit their website.
Austin is greatly admired by Charles and the rest of the squad, and they don’t want to cause any trouble. Simply letting Austin make the judgements and carrying on with their work is considerably simpler. Yet there is a significant issue. Two or three of the property managers won’t have jobs if they don’t secure three or four more management contracts in the upcoming month. The squad is greatly affected by this fact.
Well, Austin has missed something crucial. It can be true that the company receives little new business as a result of its outdated website. Austin is unaware that two out of every four referral prospects visit Commercial Care’s website to learn more about the business. They first didn’t find Austin on Google, but after being directed to him, they do so and land on his appallingly neglected website.
Unfortunately, all of their services are outdated, and many of the employees listed on the website are no longer employed by the business. This is seriously harming because:
1.Austin’s business appears considerably smaller than it is.
2.Customers are mislead into thinking that Commercial Care doesn’t provide some of the essential services they require.
Even worse, Austin has numerous positive reviews on independent sources like Yelp but there are none on the website. Prospects have simply informed Charles that their website is outdated and that’s why they lost business to another company, Charles has told Austin.
The simple line is that an outdated website makes it extremely difficult for your sales team to do their jobs. Your salesperson shouldn’t be thinking, “well, I really hope they don’t go to our website,” at any time.
Austin ought to have understood a long time ago that even if their website isn’t immediately generating business from the perspective of search engines, it can nevertheless do so. To find your website, a potential customer only has to know your company name.
VisionNow is a southern Texas-based management consultancy business owned by Paula. Paula’s business assists businesses in identifying their vision before collaborating with them to bring their daily operations in accordance with that goal. Paula’s company is well-known in the community and has garnered a number of accolades for their efforts. Paula has just been aware that the team’s margins are narrower than she’d like as a result of the company’s expansion and the need to hire more team members. She has found a solution for the problem by estimating that if they got the contracts, they could handle 15% more work. Tina, a marketing director, was employed by her three months ago to help their outreach and PPC campaigns.
Tina had an excellent job history and excellent references, so Tina was thrilled and confident when Paula hired her. Although Tina is succeeding at VisionNow, she is constantly complaining to Paula about how their website’s lack of flexibility is impairing her marketing initiatives. Paula isn’t sure if she agrees with Tina because their website appears fantastic from the outside. She has had a lot of positive feedback, and it appears to be working. Paula is unaware of this, but Tina is aware that their website was made in a very subpar manner. They selected a developer who asserted to be knowledgeable in WordPress, but his code revealed otherwise.
Tina needs a versatile WordPress website where she can build persuasive landing pages if she is to be successful with her inbound marketing activities. Paula doesn’t seem to grasp the problem, and she feels as though her options are limited. She worries that she won’t be able to handle their present website well and, unbeknownst to Paula, is actively seeking out other employment opportunities.
Simply put, despite how wonderful the VisionNow website appears, it is still 6 years old and extremely difficult to maintain. Tina’s AdWords campaign creation options are severely constrained as a result, and her conversion rates are appalling.
The basic idea is that, regardless of how it appears, your marketing efforts can be seriously hampered if you’re using an outdated website.
Tina’s concerns need to be heard more by Paula. Tina actually discovered a web design company that could revamp their website at a very affordable price. Tina would be in a much better position and would stop her job hunt right now if she could secure Paula’s support. Sadly, Paula finds the entire situation perplexing and doesn’t seem amenable to a rebuild.
Finn recently started working at Bronson & Winkle, a sizable, established CPA firm in Atlanta. Finn’s main responsibility is to find new employees and fill available jobs for the business. Being relatively new to the recruitment industry, he is working extra hard to win over his employer Jimmy, the head of recruitment. Finn feels a little alone because Jimmy is somewhat cut off from the realities of his recruitment officers’ daily lives.
Finn creates quality listings every day and submits them to employment boards and the B&W website. Although he is beginning to gain some traction, his main problem is a lack of applications. Those who do apply and are selected for an interview are shocked by how excellent of a firm B&W is. Finn concurs and is enthusiastic about the job, but he cannot figure out why there are so few candidates. He is beginning to worry that his performance won’t be good enough to keep the job for a long time. He shares his concerns with Jimmy but receives no support from him there.
Jimmy is also suffering because his department isn’t hiring nearly as many people as is necessary to meet the demand for their services. Jimmy and Finn are both angry but unsure of what to do. Finn has a suspicion that their out-of-date website may be partially to blame, but he lacks the courage to bring it up with Jimmy. Jimmy is unaware and doesn’t even take into account that the company’s website is ten years old and contains very little information about its culture, benefits for employees, or awards.
So what is happening here? On closer inspection, it is clear that B&W’s website has been severely neglected. Their services are outdated, and even their pages don’t work properly. The website frequently notifies users of code errors while they are browsing, yet these messages are meaningless to users.
Due to the website’s lack of responsiveness on mobile devices, search engine traffic has decreased over time. Although Jimmy and Finn are unaware of it, prospective employees aren’t interested because the company seems uninteresting and offers little information on the advantages or work environment.
The idea is that if you don’t make an investment in your internet presence, your business may start to lose its appeal to customers and suppliers.
Jimmy would learn that there is little to no pull for possible candidates if he become more involved. The business could resolve this and a plethora of other problems if it understood the hidden cost of maintaining an outdated website.
I decided to do this post in fictional story form because stories are much easier to remember. Too many companies have missed crucial considerations with their website and in turn, are experiencing hidden costs. In these examples, the hidden cost comes from lost sales, lost marketing reach and lost talent. How do you measure these things?
Companies will do well to have an “always-be-improving” mentality with their website. Whether they’re using a web design company or doing all of the work in-house, making a continual investment in your website can have a long-reaching and expansive effect.
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