A lot of people ask me about whether or not they should have a website, and in the past I would answer without hesitation with a resounding “yes!” but now I am not so quick to answer that way.
First of all, I do believe that when you do create a website it needs to be done well. I highly suggest that you have it professionally created. But there’s a time and place in your business when a website makes the most sense.
I thought having a website was the first thing I needed to do to attract clients so when I started my coaching business I hired a professional to create my first website.
She was experienced, created nice graphics, and had a nice portfolio. These were all great qualifications and therefore, there was no reason that my website shouldn’t get me business.
I sent prospective clients to the website to check out my services and learn more about me. They always commented on how nice my website was. But I got clients when they talked with me personally and not through my website.
My business quickly evolved and the content on my website was not accurately portraying the work I was doing. I decided I needed to spend more time and money on my website, or so I thought. But my website person and I were not on the same page so we parted ways.
I hired a new website person who was also highly qualified, a talented graphic artist and he created a fantastic looking new website for me.
I was clearer on who my clients were, the work we did and the results they achieved so I had better content and hotter copy the second time around. People loved my new website and it even sealed the deal for me on a couple of clients.
But, for the most part, I got clients the same way I always had; through having conversations about my programs and signing people up as a result of those conversations.
As I began working with more clients, I realized that my website copy was still too vague and general.
Plus, I started adding new programs to my list of services because my clients were asking for more! I decided it was time to update my website again.
More money, more time…
This ended up frustrating my web designer and things went south as a result. I was traumatized from my experiences and I couldn’t bear putting myself or someone else through that again so I stayed with the same website for a few years even though I wasn’t entirely happy with it.
But guess what?
I still got clients! And a lot of them! But it was through my networking efforts and having conversations with potential clients; not through my website.
Of course, it also depends on the type of business you have.
But for those of you who are still trying to get clear on your brand, what you offer, and who you serve, your time is better spent networking and getting better at your networking conversations.
As you work with more and more clients you’ll start to get a better feel for the specifics you need to gather, such as ideal client profiles, specific results and benefits, and compelling testimonials.
All of which are more client attractive than any website.
These items take time and experience to gather. And when you’ve worked with a good handful of clients, have clarity on what you do, how you do it, and who you do it for, and you have kick-butt success stories to share, then it’s time to explore a website so it does some of the selling for you.
So, the moral of the story is that putting a lot of time, money and energy into a full-blown website, especially when you are just starting out in business, is often times not necessary.