What Your Web Designer Doesn’t Know

It was a cold winter’s day, and the
partners in this small business had to make a change. For years, they had thrived. They had been in business for
about a dozen years. They had never had a problem getting
business in years past. People were always willing to give them referrals, and word of mouth seemed to be the
way that they got all of their business. But in the last few years, they noticed
that their industry had changed around them. Their competitors
had gotten bigger, stronger, more technical—while
their business had stayed the same. It had stagnated. They were so busy in the day to day of
running their business, that they hadn’t even noticed. The small business owners, they racked their brains, trying to think of something that could improve their revenue stream. They looked at their website. They looked at their
competitors web sites. The noticed that their website was kind of
old looking— it was kinda out-of-date. Their competitors’ [websites] were sleek and smart and could do all these cool things. They knew that the website had to be at least a
part— at least a percentage of why they were losing business are not growing anymore. So they decided to hire a web designer. So they went online. They Googled up some
small design studios in their area. They searched for some independent web
developers, and they picked one. They called the web
designer and they said, “We need a site.” And the web designer said, “Sure, I can make a
site.” And they said, “Here’s what we need. We
need a new logo—” “We need it to be mobile friendly. We need a
couple other things—” “You know, just update it and make it look more like
these sites over here.” And the web designer said, “Sure, I can do that.” And so the web
designer gave them their site, and they launched it. And then a funny thing
happened. The business got a little bit better, but
not very much. It definitely wasn’t what the business
owners had expected. They had expected a lot more. Their competitors were still crushing them.
They were still floundering in their market— in their industry. They couldn’t figure out
why. And the web designer didn’t know why. The business loved the site. It looked great, it functioned great. It looked great, but it didn’t lead to all that much more business.
This is a story that I hear all too often. And I see it played out all the time. And this happens because: as web
designers and web developers, we get so enamored with technology. We
get so high on the fact that we know how to program. And we know how to build a website and we
know how to make logos. And we know the
difference between one font and another font. I’m here to tell you, technology is so
secondary that’s it’s almost meaningless—unless you
understand your clients’ business problems. You could build the most beautiful
award-winning site that has ever been built, but you won’t have
built something useful. You won’t have designed something that is useful to your client. As web designers, a ton of us get so enamored and so
pumped up to go to build that website, we forget to ask questions. We don’t ask
questions about our clients business, their industry, their customer base, their competition,
their advantages and disadvantages, where they get their business, what their
customers are trying to find on their website. We don’t ask about where they get their
revenue stream from. We don’t ask about things that their
competitors are doing that they are not. We don’t ask about any
those things. We just take orders and say, “Yeah, I’ll build that website.” But unless that business owner has deep pockets, you’ve just made it to where they
probably can’t do another site again for a while. It might be
a year, it might be two years. It might be three years. And by not asking questions and getting
to the real root of the problem—by becoming so focused on the
technology and our own skillz at design, we’ve forgotten that we’re in business to support them in business. Our business
is not building websites. Our business is
making sure the our clients and making sure that their customers are
getting exactly what they’re on that website to find. It’s
making life easier for our clients—making life
easier for our clients’ customers. And that
involves exploration. It involves discovery. It
involves asking questions. And when we don’t do that, and we spend
our clients’ money, we’ve wasted our clients money, if we do
it [design and build] frivolously. If we just built something
that we think is going to look cool, but it’s not going to solve the issues at
hand. And in fact, we may have even given our clients’ business a death sentence. And that’s why I say, that what your web designer doesn’t know can hurt your business. That’s a true fact. If you like what you seen here
today, and you would like more insight on business, web development, web
design and content strategy— then go ahead and hit the subscribe
button, and you will never miss another video again. My name is John Locke. My website is LockedownDesign.com. And I will be here building a business one person at a time, and building a
community one relationship at a time. Thanks so much
for watching, and Peace. John Locke is a web developer
and consultant based in Sacramento California. You can find him online at Lockedown
Design dot com.

2 Replies to “What Your Web Designer Doesn’t Know”

  1. The importance of communication.
    The most important thing in communication is hearing what isn't said.
    Peter Drucker

    Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/topics/topic_communication.html#oSiYRmwdZaRf2F7X.99

  2. Thanks for checking out this video. If you have a SEO question, leave it in the comments below, and we'll answer it in a future video. Peace.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *