Online 🌎 With Amr The Internet Guy!
Ep 5 Josh Hall, Finding the Best Web Designer to work with!
Online! EP – 5
With Josh Hall, How to Find the Best Web Designer to work with!
The show focuses on entrepreneurs and business owners to help them become more successful in conducting their business on the web without being stuck with Technology, getting a headache, pulling their hairs out, or buying expensive software!
In EP5: I am joined by Josh Hall from JoshHall.co, who is “The Yoda of Divi”, a YouTuber, Web Design Teacher & Elegant Themes Blog Author.
Josh isn’t only an experienced web designer and Entrepreneur but also a great coach for other web designers around the world.
I had spoken to many business owners and entrepreneurs in the past few weeks who opted to design their own websites without using any professional help.
A few had told me that they did not like working with their web designer/techie and that was what pushed them towards going the “hard way” and designing their own websites without asking for help.
So I reached out to Josh to ask him “Do web designers have a reputation?” And what “we” can do to change this perception?
During the course of our interview, we realized that we ALSO needed to give business owners good advice on how to select the best web designer (the best fit for them) and what to look for in order to make this important business (and ongoing) relationship not only a success but also fun.
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Episode 5 Transcription:
Doing great Amar’e thanks for having me on man. Oh, it’s
a it’s a great honor to have you on my like, you know, well, this is episode number five. But you know, I’m sure we’ll be talking more on your podcast of mine.
Definitely. Definitely. Yeah, I’m on. I’m on 70. Now, so it’s been a year. Wow. But man, it’s been awesome. I’m excited for you.
a roller coaster.
It is rolling. Yeah, yeah, it’s not. The cool thing about a podcast is you can control you do whatever the heck you want to do. So yeah, we the last one year on my podcast we talked about you launch a new year. So when I saw yours come to life here I was pumped for you, man. I’m excited for you and and what you’re gonna bring because you have so much knowledge to give to everybody. So I’m excited. Thank you.
Yeah. And, like I the funny part is, I know what I’m doing for the next three episodes, which is good to plan ahead. And I what I’m doing God record to a week and only released one now. So at least I have this week. And then next week’s done this week, if that makes sense.
Well, pretty soon. So I’m actually two and a half months out now, wow, you’ll get to that point, if you if you keep at that you’ll you’ll get to that to where you can stock them up. And then and have some time to to back batch record those and everything.
Yeah, that’s a great advice for anyone you know, wishing to start a podcast or a series of videos, just do them, record them in advance, because if you wait to do your once a week, you’ll be under tremendous pressure. So these have strictly at
least have a few and, and and have. Because listeners, they want consistency. So they never know when you’re gonna post, it’s gonna be hard to have consistent listeners. So if they know, you know, amorous podcasts coming out on Tuesday or Wednesday, or whatever it comes out, it’s gonna help build the show.
Perfect. And Josh, today, I wanted to ask you about something. But let me give you the story first. So my last episode was with a business owner, a master holistic healer from British Columbia here. And we were discussing how she did her website. Basically, I wanted to connect with business owners who kind of design their website themselves, or they were the project manager, like they may have gotten some help. But it wasn’t done initially or fully done by our designer. And she was telling me that the first iteration she has three iterations. The last one is the one of course the one that she likes the most. But she said that the first iteration she had a horrible experience with the agency or the people who were supposed to do it for her. And that was what prompted her to actually take matters into her own hands. And it got me thinking like, do web designers have a reputation? Like, are we outside of our industry? Are we looked at as I don’t know, snobby people or something? I’m not sure.
I think so. Yeah, I think for the most part, yeah, the cool thing is with any challenge, there’s some sort of solution, and there’s an opportunity there. So while Yes, most web designers do have that mantra. If you are somebody who is likable and trustworthy and you do a really good job, you are going to make a good living doing web design because you will separate yourself immediately from other people. And I found that as a freelancer, I did freelance for 10 years and grew my agency and the way I did that was not by a bunch of marketing and being the biggest in my city. It was one client at a time, and I just did really good. And I worked really hard. And I really cared about my clients. And that just started the referral train for me. So it actually, it’s a good thing. It’s a problem for web designers that if you aren’t that web designer, you’re you’re going to be set.
Yeah, I mean, I, look, I had some questions written in certain order. But since you went there, so I’ll give you the last question first. Okay. So because, okay, how would the business owner who wants to have their website? How would they be able to find the right fit for them, like the best designer for what they want to do? Somebody who can work the way they want to work and things like that? Because generally, what I see people do, and certainly this echoes, when I send proposals and stuff like this, people usually go to a website. So their research the results from in the customers mind, they go to your website, they look at your portfolio, they have like a quick look at some of your projects, and maybe ask you for a proposal and look at the pricing, but there’s no way for them to know what’s working with you like so how can we what what advice can we tell them on how to select their design rate?
Yeah, great question here from so from the client perspective, there’s, there’s kind of two aspects to it, there’s the technical side. So you want to make sure whether it’s a solopreneur, a freelancer or an agency, you want to make sure that technically, they can do what you want to do with your project and that they’re well suited for it. Also, you want to make sure that you know, if you just have a an easy type of brochure style site that doesn’t need a whole lot of functionality, you probably don’t need to go the agency route, you can just have a Yeah, a freelancer that you know, like and trust. Whereas if you’re doing a big e commerce shop, and you’re going to need support often and you know, it’s going to be a really big piece to your business, soulless printers, some there are some who are advanced can be a good fit. But you also may want a small team or a small agency type of fit for that. So there are there’s the technical side, but then like you said, there’s the personal side. And the big thing that I always have told my clients from day one, and I realized this I recognize this early on, is that a web design experience is not just a one and done quick thing. It’s a relationship that lasts a long, long time. Whether you like it or not you when when you work with somebody as a web designer or an agency, they’re going to be your web person or your web guy or gal for a very long time, even if you’re not on their maintenance plan or hosting. Clients are always reaching back to the web designer, because there’s bugs, there’s issues, there’s tweaks, there’s fixes, there’s ongoing work. So I tell all my web design students that it’s kind of a selling point in a way that you want to tell clients, I am there for the long haul. And this is not a quick one and done service, even again, even if a client disappears for a few years, and then they get a new marketing director. Yeah. And they’re like, well, who did the site and and they were like, I think it was, like Jeremy or Jim or Josh or somebody from three years ago, like you’re gonna hear from the clients at some point. So from the client perspective, you just have to have that mindset, it’s not a quick one and done service. It’s not like hiring a carpenter to come in and do some work on your house. And that’s it. Because you’re not going to likely be talking to the carpenter over and over and over again, for years down the road. It is a very, it’s a deep personal relationship, it is a relationship. So the technical side is big. But you also do want to just get a feel for them as a person, which you’ll get a feel for them on their website that you should, you should get a feel for what they’re like, what kind of clients they’re suited for, you can really get a feel for them with their testimonials and reviews. So look at Google reviews, look at their testimonials, see if you can get a feel for the testimonials if they’re like, you know, kind of fake or if they’re like genuine and you can tell you trust your gut. Yeah, you can also do a little research on your own. Like, if you’re thinking about working with somebody, you could reach out to some of their clients on their portfolio and just ask them like, what did you you know, can
you give us a great idea opinion?
Yeah, give us an honest opinion on what’s like working with them, we, you know, we’re thinking about them would really value that. And if they had a really good experience, they’ll be like, Oh my gosh, Amar’e and his team, they were awesome. He’s like, the nicest guy he really helped us out, then that’s a hot lead. You’ve got him right there. So there’s no shame in doing that. And there’s absolutely no shame in looking at a bunch of different people. Because it is it’s a it’s a big deal. It’s a long relationship that you’re starting. This
is a great advice because many business owners especially solopreneurs, when they’re starting out, they decide that cost is their decider, and then they could end up having a totally horrible experience. And it’s not just because they wanted to save some bucks, but it’s also because they didn’t do the research. They just looked at, okay, out of the three proposals or the three people that are approached, who will cost me less and, and also, there’s an issue. Sometimes it’s not cost. Sometimes it’s speed, like you think you want to have your website up and running in two weeks. But you got to think, like what kind of good work can be done in two weeks? Because you need to remember, the web designer is not your employee, like is these people like us? We are these people. They’re not working solely for you. They will give you their undivided attention while they’re working on your stuff. But they still have 10 other things during the day to day. And you know, so you may look at it from a business owner perspective, as Yeah, this my project takes 30 hours like why do you need more than one week? You could do 30 hours in one week. Right? But
not the way it works? Yeah. So there’s, yeah, the big thing is, I think the overarching point is, who is ever happy with getting the cheapest product possible? Like anything in life? Have you ever bought something that is the cheapest and be like, Man, I’m so glad I’m so glad I went with the cheapest vacuum I could find. Because for two months, yeah,
it sucks. But it doesn’t suck sucks.
So the rule of thumb is in any industry, but particularly in web design, it’s you get two out of three, cheap, fast or quality. Yeah, meaning, if it’s, if you want it fast and cheap, it’s not going to be quality, you want it cheap, in quality, fast, and if you want it fast and quality, it ain’t gonna be cheap. So you really do have to pick your poison. For between all between those three, the you get two out of three. And it makes sense. If you think about for any clients listening to this, and they’ve had experiences, web designers put all those scenarios in front of you. And you’ve likely seen each one of those. So yeah, it can, it can be tricky, but the thing is, I mean, I understand budget, their budgets are real, and clients don’t always have a huge budget, but it is one of those things where you get what you pay for. So there’s also no shame in like, if you want to start a website is kind of a phase one, maybe you want to build your business, yes, you can absolutely work with somebody who’s maybe newer into web design, and somebody who’s like a freelancer who’s on the beginning, and as long as you know, like and trust them, and you feel like they’re gonna work really hard. Even though your website may not be the best amazing thing right away, it could still be a good starting point. And then you can build from that. So I would definitely have that phased approach, start small, feel good about what you have in place right now. And then you can build to that amazing 10,000 $20,000 really professional website type of thing.
This is a great advice. Because like when you when you meet with business owners, sometimes they want everything at once. And and if you’re not, if you’re not experienced, you can probably take on too much work than what you can deliver on and get your customers angry. Because it’s not. It’s below the what they expected. But the the the key in this, I think, is just to have an honest conversation with your client, and tell them like, don’t be afraid you’re the expert, you’re brought in as the expert. So you should be able to tell them what works and what doesn’t. So if they come to you, and from the get go, don’t have a membership website, and they want to have 10 payment gateways on like, why would you need 10 payment gateways, like, you probably just need one, PayPal, and one that takes credit cards. If you don’t want to use PayPal to take credit cards, that’s it, like you don’t need 10 if you say a membership, like many, I get approached a lot, you know, from prospect clients who want to do memberships, but they don’t have any content yet that they want to look behind that membership site. So what is the point just have phase one, a regular website, without the membership port? It’s you’ll have it faster, like in comparison, and it’s not going to cost you that much. Then once you have some content that you feel like, Hey, here’s the content that I think people would pay to access. Come back and like, you know, I mean, I don’t want to oversimplify it and say it’s just a plug in. But there’s a lot of setup and configuration in it and how it works. But it’s an addition, that’s not gonna take as long as the initial iteration of the website to cause the branding is there already.
Yeah, phases are the way to go. And also with that point, from the web designer perspective, and from the client perspective, you also want to make sure that web designers is going to be competent in those areas, or they even just do those services. So I had clients years ago, that would always be like, Oh, you know, now you did our website. We want you to do our social media and SEO and all this other stuff. And I was like, You know what, all I do at that time was just web design, basic e commerce and some print work at that time. I didn’t do SEO. I didn’t do social media. I never did. Social media. So I was very honest about what I did and what I didn’t do. So that needs to be talked about as well. Because if you’re on a budget and you want to just get your website built, you likely find a web designer who could be a good fit at a lower price range. But then if you still have these other needs, for additional phases, maybe they know somebody who would be a good fair, they’re going to partner with somebody. So that’s definitely the approach to have. And just make sure whoever you’re going to choose is going to be a good fit for right now. And for the long run,
I have a lot of not a lot, but like a few videos and articles about SEO, because I’m trying to educate the solopreneur specifically goes, it seems to be my circle. And of course, they are the people who I want to help the most. And they’re the people who I meet, you know, when I go to events and stuff like that, and in most cases, many of them that just get attracted by the shiny ads that you get on on Facebook and other places. The order the six time emails
I’ve accessed over 99 a month.
Yeah. And it’s like many of them just jump on it. And oh, yeah, 99 a month. That’s, that’s not bad. Like, that’s a good budget. And I’m going to be on the first page of Google. And like, they realize after three, four months, that their phone isn’t ringing as much as they thought it will or they’re not getting those emails from the website. They just have some ads that they’re not even targeted to that to their prospect, you know, prospective clients. Yeah. And I keep, like hammering that point all the time. It’s like, Guys, okay, let’s even assume that your SEO endeavor works, right? Is your website ready for that traffic, it’s kind of like inviting people for lunch without having anything to cook.
That’s a good point. That’s a great analogy. Yeah.
So like people who are turned up, like they come to your website, but your website isn’t equipped to deal with this traffic or converted in any way. Like, you probably don’t have a clear call to action or a lead magnet, something that a user can download or, and
that’s it, that’s a good point to a lot of companies make the mistake of investing in SEO and marketing first, before they actually really invest in their website, because if you send all your traffic to a place, that’s terrible, just like you said, it’s not going to convert, it’s you’re wasting money, because you’re just investing all this stuff in something that isn’t going to compare. So you need to start with something that’s gonna convert, you have a good design website that’s functional, you can test it out, see how it does on 10 people if you go to a networking event, or you have some sort of ad in your circle or or professional or personal network, and you get 100 people to your sites half of what you’re really good at client or prospective or prospects. And if you know 10 of them sign up with your service then that’s a pretty good conversion rate right there from 50 So yeah, times that by a 10 or 1000 then you’ll see a better conversion rate well if only one person signs up or nobody signs up from that then you need that’s when you need to pivot and make some changes before doing a bit ag ad campaign to do an SEO
so stop worrying about traffic and and think more conversion that that’s what we’re saying. Yeah, and that’s the same thing with social media like people pay money to just get likes and like he’s in anything like you can you can practically pay people to like you know what I mean? Yeah. Oh, you’ll find some of these offers in online Yeah,
they’re stories about like popular instagramers who have millions of followers and then they try to sell something and they barely make any money Billy Billy any sales? So yeah, it’s all it’s like the the hollow shallow traffic that isn’t going to convert it isn’t paying it’s not worth it. It’s There’s no use of getting bigger numbers. I’ve had that mindset with what I do with my site, Josh Hall co because I I’m in a market that’s very oversaturated online learning with web design. But I’ve made a good living at doing this because I focused on quality over quantity. So I have some competitors who have YouTube channels of millions and millions of views and hundreds of thousands of subscribers. Well, my channel is doing pretty good. I have closing in on 2 million views and 19,000 subscribers, but that’s not much compared to my competitors, but I have a really good What was the conversion? And
yeah, I have a lot of good followers students.
Yeah, like, like good followers. Yeah, followers, not cheap. You know, worth not, I’d say worthless, worthless followers. But technically, like on paper, they wouldn’t be worth having as
they’re not doing business with you. So yeah, they’re just looking like it’s like window shopping.
Yeah, they’re taking this kind of thing. Yeah. not investing in engaging
if you’re a brick and mortar, and that’s like the equivalent of window shopping. People are just passing outside, but they’re not getting in the shop to ask about something or that’s a good point, check something out.
It’d be like, yeah, it’d be like having a post or pre COVID It would be like having a shop right on like Fifth Avenue where everyone’s walking, but then have it like no one come in and make a purchase. Yeah, exactly. They just see your, your window. So yeah, that’s exactly what most people are doing.
So going back to the web designers reputation, what can we as web designers do to actually, I don’t know, fix this issue?
Well, I mean, kind of what I said initially, is what I would echo right now. And that’s just to do a good job and care about your clients one step at a time, don’t worry so much about getting a ton of traffic, like we just talked about, and a ton of leads, just focus on the one lead that you get that week, or the one referral. Now you do need to market and need to innovate. But the good news is, you don’t need that many clients in web design to make a good living, I actually firmly believe being in the States, you’re in Canada, most of the people who are my followers are in the States, UK and Australia to where the, you know, we really don’t need more than half a dozen, or maybe a couple dozen 250 clients to make a really good income, which should be very freeing, because if you treat them right, and you do really good business with them, and you focus on recurring revenue, and not not to milk every client, but to really get as much out of them as you can and give them as much value as they can. That’s going to alleviate the stress of having to get a new website done every day or sold every day. Yeah. And there’s also for the client, that should be something they look into as well, like does an agency have thousands of clients, they’re not going to get treated? Like they would have a solopreneur just has a couple days? Yes.
Yes. more personalized experience, which most people want these days, so
so think about, am I gonna be a number on their list? Or am I gonna be you know, why don’t the IPS,
exactly, they’re gonna know me by name? Or am I just a number on a spreadsheet? My client 72 or client 1000? Or my client, you know, like, 30, Jim Morrison or whatever? Yeah, yeah, I really, that’s the cool thing about the personal aspect of all this is, again, for the web designer, all we need to really do is stand out by doing a good job and caring, and just keep on leveling up ourselves and investing in ourselves and learning. And as long as we’re there for our clients, it’s gonna make all the difference. And one, one thing I heard recently, which was really resonated with me, is that 1% of your clients will pay you 10 times as much as the rest of your clients, maybe even a higher percentage would. So how many people how many of us focus on projects and type of clients that are just the low hanging fruit, and then we have a really good projects and our clients who would pay us a lot of money and would probably pay us a lot more money if we offered more value for them. But because we’re stuck in these lower clients, we’re not able to service them as well. So I really thought about that i over the past few years of my agency, I focused on the a client’s offering better SEO better content and better stuff that they needed. And it took all the stress and pressure off be because I wasn’t having to get 10 clients a week, all I needed to do was to get one or two clients a month because I was able to focus on really good clients in my eight clients. So yeah, and that’s in any industry, generally, your clients, a very small percentage would be willing to pay a lot more for your services, if you offer them more value. So focus on the top, you know, 10 20% of your best clients.
So offer personalized service, more value. Like I think I’m shooting myself in the foot because we’re sharing a lot of internal design secrets with our customers and our clients. But one thing you mentioned, caught my attention because we sometimes we look at things as recurring income. But the goal isn’t to milk the client, the goal is to actually deliver better value. And this issue sometimes with the clients that they don’t see their website, as I call it, a living organism. They see it as a one off. And many people don’t even think about the website care, maintenance security. Yes. And backups, guys like back, yeah, well, I often get colds when the crisis hits.
Yes. And that’s where again, going back to the idea of starting this relationship, it’s gonna last a long time, it’s gonna happen with web design, because I’ve had clients that have come to me and they’re like, our old designer, I don’t even know how to get ahold of him now, like, they’re just gone, they just disappear. They never email back. We have our website, it’s hacked or something, and they’re screwed. You know, there’s a lot of points where I feel like a lot of web designers where that bad name came from is because they tried to milk clients as much as they could initially and they don’t take care of them for the long run. But what I would challenge all web designers to think of is, you know, would it be better to try to milk a client for, you know, like, $5,000 for a project and just have it be a one time thing or would it be better to do a really good Good job for this client at like 2500. But yeah, have your client for 10 years. So 10 year, if they’re paying you 1000 to 2500, every 10 years, or every year for 10 years, then that’s going to be a much better payoff, and you’re going to be able to service that client much better. And it’s going to be better for the client to, instead of just trying to get one really big project and then burn them. And then that’s bad for your reputation. It’s bad for you just as a person to do a bad job and, you know, try to milk somebody for all their work with their budgets. So yeah, just that’s it’s a much better mindset to almost take it smaller, but then make it last a long time.
So from the clients perspective, you need to be looking for somebody who can give you a personalized service, someone who’s got integrity, not just the technical part, I know that sometimes it’s hard for you as a client to find all this information about the person that you’re about to hire to do your website. But as I said, look at the testimonials, and like, if you go to Google Maps, like you know, and look at the reviews there, and it’s easy to tell, because sometimes, if the reviews sound like they’re a copy and paste, or if you have a lot of repetition, that looks like the person just got their friends and family to leave reviews. It’s easy to spot. But the good reviews and the original and let’s say like genuine ones, would also you’d find them mentioning the person or a person within that agency, if it’s an agency, like you always find, hey, you know, Paul was really helpful when we started this project. But no one is actually forced to put somebody’s name in there. And many people would just do five stars. I’m not even write anything. Right, right. But the fact that they went on, and they wrote something personal, tells you something about the person who they worked with.
Yeah, you just as from the client perspective, you have to trust your gut, particularly when it comes to looking at reviews to see if they’re valid. And then also just with the agency or with the web designer, or the team, just trust your gut on how you feel about them. Because your gut is always right. And one thing I would say too, is you can also just ask like, if it’s a if it’s a freelancer, you’re thinking about working with, just ask them about what their vision is for the company moving forward. Like, you want to make sure they’re gonna be there in a couple years.
Yeah, exactly. Then not just
because they thought it makes a bit of money on the short term, right? or hear about like, do they do have they surrounded herself in a really good network? That’s one reason I I’m launching my membership right now is I have a membership with an amazing community of mice, a lot of my students in this amazing network of designers. And one reason I wanted to do that for them, was it a web designer is stuck, or they don’t, they can’t take this project on. But man, I’d like to have a referral source for them or to have like, you know, somebody to send them to, they have this network of amazing designers. Yeah. And I brought together that’s with them as well. So you want to as a client, you want to see what their vision is. And if they have something like that. And I know so like, just a few months ago, I sold my web design agency and moved to being a course creator full time. Well, my clients though, my whole thing was I did not want to burn my clients. And I do want to say like peace out clients never gonna hear from me again. It was I cry like I that was a very hard decision for me to hand off my clients. But I knew that I couldn’t serve my students, well answer my clients Well, at some point. But what I did was I brought in somebody as my CEO, who was very communication and client driven. And I knew he was going to take good care of the clients. And he would actually be able to offer more value, because we combined our teams and we really created a nice plan to build the business. So for my clients, I just was very open about what I’m up to when this side endeavor that went full time. And I told them, you don’t want to make sure you’re in the best of hands as well, because a lot of my clients did sign up because of me. But then I made sure to link him in very carefully with with Eric, my CEO. And from a client perspective, a lot of them have been stayed very, very satisfied. We’ve had a very low rate of people who ended up not staying with us. So it’s been great.
I love working with Eric. He’s brilliant. Hey, Eric.
I know, Oh, man. I’m telling you, man, we got a Dream Team. You and Eric and a lot of the people that we are network, it’s Yeah, it’s awesome. Like,
it’s actually great. Really? Yeah, there’s
rarely a situation that we’re going to encounter that we can’t find somebody to help or to pass that work on.
And it’s brilliant. I think we I don’t know if we said that off camera. I have a short memory, you probably know that is the age. But it’s way better than using something like Facebook groups. It’s it’s secure, it’s safe, you can like you know, you’re gonna you’re not going to be judged. And you know that you can openly share stuff because it’s not. I don’t want to say that it’s not public, but it’s kind of It’s public within the people who are in the group, as opposed to the whole of Facebook that has, yeah, 1 billion or more.
And I will say to one, to switch it up, just kind of go back to like, the bad name of web being a web designer, a lot of it has to do to just communication. Yeah. And the quote that I’ve really stuck with for years is the quality of life will depend on how well you communicate. And that’s true in every area of life. But particularly with clients, that’s huge. It’s huge, ongoing during the client process and website design process. It’s also huge right away and the onboarding process, and you have to be very responsive and allow time to be able to get to people, you can have some good funnels in place to weed clients who aren’t a good fit or looking for the cheapest option. But for somebody who is a qualified lead, you want to really nurture that and you want to be very urgent to to get them on board, and you want to respond to them quickly do a proposal as quickly as possible. Because right now, like, we have, we had a company that did some trim work on our house, and we want to get our back door replaced. And it’s already been three weeks, and I have not heard back on a quote on that. Yeah. And I’ve texted them three times, and they still haven’t gotten like, I’m about to look for Yeah, for too long to get just to get a quote, yeah.
Oh, like you, you reminded me that earlier on, you know, when I was in the Middle East, and there were some times when I would beg a company to send their contract. It’s like, you’re approved. We like your work, we spoke to your team, you know, that that happens with web design, as well, sometimes with agencies that have a separate sales team from like, if you’re a freelancer, chances are that you’re the one who sells and you’re the one who delivers, maybe you have a couple of people on your team or working with you. But for the client, they only deal with you that they never speak with somebody else from your team. But if you’re an agency that has like 1015 employees, the chances are that the person you spoke with who sold you, the service or who close the deal with you isn’t the person who’s going to be working with you. And this sometimes can lead to friction, or inability with the personality or something like that.
That’s another good point for from the client perspective, like when you’re talking with an agency, in this case, you know, find out about their different teams, because that is a big one, a lot of people will love the salesperson, then they get started on the project, and they never talk to them again, then it’s like this, you know, developer who’s not a nice person that they’re dealing with. So that’s a big part too, like you want to find out about the team, if that’s the case. And I would say from a designer perspective, because I understand you get busy, it’s hard to keep up with proposals and stuff. But if that is you, and you can’t keep up with getting back to people on time, you’ve got to make some changes. Now you’ve got to put some filters in place to weed out the amount of leads that are coming in to make sure they’re qualified and you’re not wasting time on people who are never going to buy. And you also just need to schedule your time better. Yeah, long as you get back with somebody within 24 hours, even if it’s just to say, hey, haven’t had a chance to work on this yet, or we’re working? Yeah,
that’s great. It’s a no, it’s a no update notification.
I do that all the time. It’s kind of scary. I know. Sometimes you sit and say like, Oh, I’m gonna look bad now because I’m, you know, past the deadline for this part or whatever. But actually, people appreciate your honesty. If you say like, just be honest say, look, I expected to finish this yesterday. Something came up. And it’s taking a little bit longer, but I’m working on it is going to be fixed.
Yeah. I usually like I appreciate that. Yeah, no problem.
I usually tell people like yesterday, I was fixing some shipping options for someone, somebody WooCommerce website. And they had a problem with people who are not shipping to their own address, like I buy a book and I want to send it to you. Right, and that part wasn’t working well. And I didn’t, I had no clue. You know how long it will take me, because I thought it’s just like the regular WooCommerce fields. And then I realized, however, build their website for them used custom coding. So I had to go fishing inside code to find the part that’s responsible for these fields. Gotcha. So what I told the client, hey, it’s gonna take me a little bit of time to learn which part of that custom code controls this area? But I’m going to let you know today. Yeah, it’s, you know, once I find out,
it’s always better from the designer and developer perspective, just be honest and open about stuff then being silent, and then it pop and then because if you hadn’t said anything, and you’re a week late on something, the clients gonna be like, I never heard from him or like, what’s going on? You say, oh, by the way, I don’t even have anything done for you. It’s like, well, then it’s really bad. Whereas if you just said, Hey, I’m working on something that getting a little delay right now on your priority, I just, we need to get this done first, before we dive into this, they’re going to appreciate that and most It’s a very understanding as long as you get the project done within the deadline, like the little deadlines during a project can be, you know, a little wishy washy. Yeah, you’ll have some you have some wiggle room on those.
So, as we were saying, this is a relationship, and it’s an ongoing relationship. And any relationship has two parties. What do we want in our ideal client? So as a, as a web designer, like, What do I want? and expect from my client?
Yeah, it’s actually probably a lot of the same stuff that we talked about, from the client perspective, just reverse, like, as a designer communication,
yeah, communication education
both ways. If they if they don’t communicate well, during the proposal process, they’re not going to communicate the red flag, again. Yeah. If they can’t get you the right information, just during your questionnaires, then they’re probably not going to get you content on time, you know. So there’s a lot of those things that I realized later on, I was like, Well, does it realize that wasn’t a great fit from the start? Yeah, in the beginning, you need to get as many people as you can. And then you can start being more selective. But that’s a big one personality type. I mean, of course, you want somebody who’s going to have the budget to invest in your services, and isn’t nickel and diming. You so you want somebody ideally, who’s going to be able to, to pay you and understand your value. But at the same time, you also don’t want to just base it on money, you also want to share some joy working with because think about it with a web design project, it’s likely going to be weeks and months, that you’re going to be working with them and then ongoing, you may not hear from them as much as you would initially. But you will hear from them once a month, every couple,
yeah, they’ll come when they need something changed. Or when they have a problem.
You want somebody that you’re going to enjoy talking with like my best 20 to 30 clients, we’re all people that I enjoyed talking with and we’re excited to hang out with, like I would have got a beer with quite a few of them and hung out like there’s a lot of you. You don’t want to you don’t want people that are going to make you sigh the sea fact Yeah, like a person’s calling, I did not want to talk that person. Think about that I can, it’s funny, because I can tell now, within two sentences in an email, if somebody is going to be a good person to work with, or they’re going to be tricky. I’ve actually had the same thing with students, I can tell if somebody is asking certain questions and their tone. I’m like, you know what, maybe my courses aren’t for you. Like, here’s some free youtube. Here’s the free youtube channel. The same thing with clients, sometimes they would say like, Well, why is this so expensive? When this is cheap? And I would be like, Well, you know, maybe we’re just not the best fit for you. That’s better. Yeah, get them out of the door now quick, rather than work with them for a couple years and be miserable. So yeah, personality budget, of course, is a factor. But that probably doesn’t even Trump, the the personality type, because if you really like working with somebody, then if you help their business grow, there’ll be liable to invest in you more moving forward. So So those are some big ones. And you can do the same thing, talk, you know, talk with them about the mission and what their goals are. And you can get a feel for them as well, like, are they just somebody who’s blowing smoke, and they’re going to close their doors in six months? Or are they serious about their business.
So that that’s a great point, as well, because I personally invest in my customer success, like, it’s my, I don’t know, I’m wired this way, probably because I worked a lot in customer services before. And I usually want, like, I don’t want to give my client a good website. And that’s it, I want to make sure that that they’re confident to use this website as a tool for their business, it’s something that they’ll continue to use for the next I don’t know, 510 years. And we, we can work on it together. Or even if they use somebody else, after the, you know, taking the keys from me, but what I want is I want them to be successful. And for me to know that they have to be communicative, they have to be, you know, reachable. Same thing, like if you’re busy, just say, Hey, you know what, I’m busy, but I’m gonna get back to you tomorrow or something like that. Yeah, don’t leave me hanging with a question about could be about a piece of content or a feature that you want on your site, or an image that you have to send that you didn’t send or something like that.
Yeah, cuz the success of a web design project is based on both parties. And particularly in the early part, it is kind of up to the client, because if a client delays getting content for a month, as the web designer, you’re kind of already checked out of the project that Yeah, cuz you’re frustrated, you lost your mojo, because what I found is, as a designer, when you land a project, you’re really fired up and you ideally you want to try to get as much as you can done in this first couple weeks while your creativity is fresh. Yes. Did you wait two months to really start it? You’re done? Like I remember, I had about a two month window during a project to where if it’s something that takes longer than two months, I just kind of fizzle out. It’s actually Yes, I just lost my membership. And originally I gave myself like four months to really work through it and It’s been less than two months since I really started diving into it. And we’re live because I know, I know myself, I don’t want it to drag on too long, I felt like you know what, I got it in a good enough place to go live. Now going back to the phased approach. And here we are, we can do it one phase at a time. So I launched it within the two month period. So same thing with web design projects. And clients, they have that idea too. And most clients need to know they’re going to have all these ideas for a website. And this need they have and they need to capitalize on it as soon as possible. Because eventually, you’re going to focus on different stuff, or you’re going to get sidetracked and you’re not going to get it done, which is the worst case.
So business owners, you guys need to do your homework. So a big part of your homework is I always tell people, and I think we need to reiterate this. You don’t start your website project when you’re not ready. Like, don’t let yourself be pushed into doing it. Especially when you’re starting out. Like how I see it. Sometimes, as an entrepreneur, you get an idea. The idea becomes big in your head, you go and buy a domain name. Now we want to live website, but you haven’t thought your business process through yet. Like you don’t Yeah, you don’t have a plan. I don’t I don’t mean like a rigid, you know, 100 pages business plan. But
at least you know, the needs, you know, your goals, you know, your customers
who your customers. Because if you don’t have that information, it’s very hard for web designers to give you a good quote. And that’s where, where a lot of problems happen. Because you may say, Well, I’m not sure exactly what I need. But you know, this package seems fine. And then come to find out Well, this $2,000 website is actually a $10,000. website. That’s when a lot of problems happen. So yeah, you got to know your need. And of course, you’re not going to know everything in your web designer or agency should guide you through the whole Yeah, so they should they should help you out with that. So they’ll kind of even a questionnaire I’ve had a lot of my students tell me your questionnaires that you gave us, for our clients have made like the clients really think about their project,
which is big. How long does it take to fill Josh?
Good. It’s not that long. It’s too bad. Okay, so what I have a couple of different ones, but I have thanked
questions. So yeah,
that’s perfect. Like, that’s usually enough to really get the client to think, Oh, I didn’t think about my demographic, or Well, what is my main call to action? Do I want them to exactly or email. So that should definitely help you, the more you can get done and prepared will because that’ll help you determine who’s a good fit, too. I actually just experienced this myself, one of my colleagues who I had on the podcast has a remote video team, because I’m looking to outsource some of my video stuff moving forward. And I kind of got the conversation started with him prematurely, because I didn’t quite know what I wanted yet. And it was kind of hard for him to estimate and I told him, I was like, Man, I’m sorry, I should probably shouldn’t Yeah, to the new year because I’m focused on my membership stuff right now. I’m not, this isn’t as big of a priority. So it was kind of hard for him to quote Exactly. And I gave him kind of half ass questions.
And for you as the business owner, you’re checking in and checking out and checking in and checking out.
So the specialists are supposed to do the work for you. Doesn’t know, like doesn’t have the full view yet.
Yeah. Yeah. Like if I would have said, Okay, I want to, you know, here’s the videos I’m producing. I want to teasers one big clip. And here’s what I would need from you guys. This is how long it takes me, it would be a lot easier for him to give a really which we’d actually did ended up doing that just last week. But it took a while to get there because I kind of broke my own rule and wasn’t completely ready to move forward on that before asked him the question. So I kind of jumped the gun. So the same thing with clients, though, you don’t want the gun, you don’t have to get everything perfect. But you definitely want to have the main aspects in place. So you know what you want to do before moving forward
and have content? I mean, we people saying that we’re asking them to write a book, when you say content, and some say Some even say, oh, but I’m not good at writing. Well, are you good at talking? Aren’t you? Just if you are people, like if you meet someone in the street, and they ask you what you do for a living? Don’t you have an answer for that? Just take this, put it on your homepage.
Again, the web designer agency should guide people through that. But yeah, you don’t have to overwhelm yourself. Because Yeah, and honestly, for web design for websites, in particular, the most of the actual words and content should be in blog post. So the other steps should just be highlights. Yeah, people scan websites, they don’t read them. So it’s really important to to not overwhelm him
to having so much content on my first page. I want to trim that
down. Yep. Yep, make those the highlights, and then break those off into their own pages and put in a blog post. So yeah, that’s the big thing to the clients do need to be as prepared as possible. It’s gonna make for a much smoother experience. Yeah, I mean, just a quick intro is what you need. You’re just telling the world who you are and what you do. That’s it, and maybe why You like doing it? So why, like what? One One tip to I don’t want to derail us. But one tip for clients when it comes to content is to explain your stuff like you would a five year old. Yeah, yeah. Or even maybe a 10, maybe a 10 year old, depending on the industry. Like they asked you, what do you do? Tell them? How would you tell 10 year old like,
You know, for me, it’s like, well, I, I help people learn how to build websites. That’s easy for a 10 year old. Yes. And I said, Well, we talked about business growth and strategy. And then we talk about, you know, website configuration, and then we talk about conversion based design. If I say conversion based design to a 10 year old, they’re gonna be like, what, but if I say, I teach people how to build websites that make them money, and make sure people actually stay on the website, that’s the kind of stuff you need to put on your website. So just a little conversion, tip there, make your content so that a 10 year old would be under be able to understand it.
That’s an excellent advice. Because like, it’s even us as designers, we should always not not just for our website, but for our clients websites. Because sometimes they give you the content, you put it there, and you don’t text you don’t advise them. Yeah, like, Hey, this is too heavy, or
Yeah, no one’s gonna read this this industry talk make it for a 10 year old.
We’re all specialists in our own domain. So if you’re a financial advisor, or if you’re a coach, or you know, a yoga, you know, a yogi, or yoga, is it a yoga coach? Is that the right word under? yoga instructor? Yeah, I call them Yogi’s, but you know your stuff better. But when you have a message for the public, they’re not from your industry. So they need to connect with your message, they need to understand exactly, what’s what’s in it for them. So you have to explain it in a little bit. Like, remember, the website is not made for your competitors, like you’re not trying to have a leg up?
Yeah, that’s a good tip for web designers, too, because a lot of people going back to the original question of like, Why are web designers? What do they have that name? A lot of people hate talking to web designers. Because if you’re a business owner, and you’re like a paint shop, and you want to get your website down, but then this person you’re talking to is talking about DNS and zone records, and WordPress and SSL security. And you’re like, I have no idea what the heck,
you’re talking about. Yeah,
yeah, your web designer needs to talk to you at your level and help guide you to that do stuff, because some people can talk about that, but not everybody. So yeah, clear about that. And you can create funnels on your website, like your homepage to be for the 10 year old, and then your services pages can be for the 20 year old, and then your blog posts could be for your 40 to 50 year olds that know more about this certain subject or, you know, hopefully, that analogy was okay. But you know, yeah, it’s
a phased approach. Yeah, it’s gonna
approach everything in phases, baby.
And the website is a living organism. So yeah, so you business owners, and well, my colleagues, because I’m a business owner, myself. Yeah, partners and colleagues out there. The message is do a little bit of homework, don’t just jump into it when you’re not ready. Don’t select your web designer, hasting Lee goes, it’s a long term relationship. And don’t be scared when I say long term relationship. You don’t have to keep paying. It’s not like marriage. But
yeah, yeah, you can always break free. Yeah, you just you ideally don’t want that. So it’s like, yeah, if you start using like the dating thing, it’s like dating or getting married. You don’t start out with getting married, you start out ideally with dating and then engaged in the same relationship with a web designer, you start out like testing the field, is this web designer gonna be a good fit? Yeah, they are. Okay, here’s a proposal. All right. Engagement. Yep. Okay, I paid them. You know, you’re,
you’re not paying the designer when you’re not using them, but you’re gaining the relationship.
Yeah, you’re never you’re never really married. So that’s fine. But yeah, you know, you don’t want to do that ideally. So
you want like, you know, when, when you know, something bad happens if you get hacked or whatever, especially if you don’t have any maintenance, any annual or monthly maintenance agreement with anyone, and you’ve decided to maintain the website yourself and something happens. You want to be able to pick up the phone or send an email to your web designer and get some help right away to get your website up and running. Again, you don’t want to sever these ties, you don’t want to have a horrible experience. And so choose wisely. You know, I, in most cases, almost every single case, my client becomes my friend after like, you know, especially if they’re local, we we cross paths with each other sometimes and yeah, and events and stuff like that.
It’s huge relationship based business. It’s it. There’s no better time than that than now to really on both sides to from a web designer and the client for sure.
Perfect. So thank you, Josh, very much. I know that you have a hard stop coming. And I, I appreciate the time that we’re spending together. And yeah, the club is great. Like I enjoy being there with with everyone was there?
Well, it’s awesome. having you in the membership and then having you up as a part of the team member. I’m excited that you’re doing more now that you’re full time doing this. Because I see a lot more before I didn’t. I didn’t see as much when you were
talking to my wife. Yeah, what are you doing? You’re spending so much time doing these things as like, Yeah, but I’m enjoying myself like,
yeah, you’re enjoying yourself. big contributor, man. I’m really excited for you. And yeah, hopefully this talk. I know, we kind of bounced around a few different topics. But
yeah, it was.
Hopefully it was there was a lot to pull from for both the web designer and clients to as entrepreneurs.
No, I have a problem to choose the title for this one like
a tough one, man. I’ll be curious to see you to come okay.
Initially it was do web design. There’s a very petition. Why, but I don’t know. Maybe I’ll see. I’ll keep it this way. I don’t know. I’ll listen to it again and decide. It’ll come to you.
It’ll come to you.
Thank you very much, Josh. Awesome. Cheers
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