Most of the small to mid-sized businesses I speak with would rather get a root canal than have to go through the process of building a new website.

With the way things used to be, I can’t say I blame them.

The first thing I to do is challenge them on the timing of the project itself. As much as they’d like to delegate it, check that box and move on to more important priorities, a website project will require some of their and their teams time.

Assuming it’s the right quarter for them to focus on a project like this, I typically ask about their existing website and hear things like:

  • Our website is outdated

  • It has become a liability in some or many ways

  • We’re handcuffed, locked out of the content, and we no longer have or want a relationship with the vendor we hired previously

  • The website isn’t doing its job (establish credibility in the marketplace, generate leads or sales, etc.)

These are the most common known and spoken problems I hear about.

But if we dig a bit deeper, we begin to understand the biggest known, but unspoken, problem.

What I’ve found is that beneath the surface there’s a deep uncertainty about websites and digital marketing in general. This can be really frustrating and incredibly stressful.

I liken it to going into a casino with checkbook and ATM in hand. You know you have to gamble at some point, and as you look across the room all the dealers are looking back at you, ready and willing to take your money.

You have no idea how to play the games, and no rules in place to help you know when to say when and cut your losses.

I can appreciate what it’s like to be in that situation. It’s not fun.

So we’ll start figuring out what it is they really want from their new website, and how it can begin to play a role in contributing to their overall business strategy.

Assuming we both feel it’s the right fit, I’ll typically give a quote right then and there.

The good news is that website technology has evolved significantly over the years. Service providers like SquareSpace make my job much easier because they offer secure hosting and award-winning design under one roof.

This not only reduces the investment that’s required for a new website, but enables small and mid-sized businesses to take out the middle man (me, in this example) so they have a direct relationship with the service provider in the event I get hit by a bus.

What’s nice is that now they, their team, and I can discuss the more important things: Like their overall business strategy, and how their website can begin to make a meaningful contribution to its success.

If during the conversation we find out that now’s not the right time, or if we’re not the right fit, I’ll deliver as much value as possible during our time together and point them in the direction of someone or some software that can help them get to where you’re looking to go.

But if it is the right time, and if we are a good fit, they’ll look back 30 days or so from now and have the peace of mind knowing they made a good decision that completely transformed their existing sales liability into a real marketing asset.

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