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Website Investment ?

 
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Old 08-31-2018, 09:02 PM   #21
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Re: Website Investment ?


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Originally Posted by AustinDB View Post
I started of with a lawyer that was $200/hr and when I found out that that one wasn't competent I moved to a $400/hr lawyer. There was also an online presence of reviews from people who had used that lawyer and I could make an educated decision.

When it comes to web designers, I've not been comfortable in finding a competent individual. The recommendation from my HBA was a dismal failure.

So, how do we contactors go about finding a competent website guy? Are we talking about the difference between a $60/hr website guy vs a $300/hr website guy?
Learn everything you can about Seo, spend a hundred hours a month on it. Research good sites, check their back links, check the links to their links. Analyze their on page, after you spend another 50 hours understanding the basics of good on page.

Look up how fast sites should load, how to reduce picture size, how to use alt text.

Look up servers, look up shared hoating and if your site will be hosted with p0rn sites.

After you have possibly learnt everything you can for a year or two then you can make an educated decision.

Or you can hire sites4contractors.com
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Old 09-01-2018, 10:32 AM   #22
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Re: Website Investment ?


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After you have possibly learnt everything you can for a year or two then you can make an educated decision.

Or you can hire xyz.com
Actually this is the area that can be done in much less time than just going at it on your own. There are circumstances where hiring a website company first is a good decision, but there are many more circumstances where it is better to plan for a moment before hiring anyone, and the website company will do such a better job.

If they go it alone, yes, it can easily take a lot of time. But if they decide to understand what a website company thrives on, then the final result is infinitely better. The average website company needs to be able to build a website in as quick as time as possible, especially if there is a perception of a fixed price with a fixed deadline.

However, when someone wants to create a marketing machine, with the website, with social, with reviews, video, etc., then I do highly encourage people to learn a little of what it takes. Adequate preparation before calling XYZ.com, 123.com or any independent programmer will produce so many additional results that will benefit the website results. There is only so much time any website company can give their clients to create a great site, and the marketing education and planning is independent of the website company's development expertise.

I equate it to deciding on MS-Word versus Google-Docs without knowing how to write in the first place. The website company can do a good job doctoring up the missing sentences, but they do an even better job when someone provides them a story.

And when done right, it is not years but somewhere between 3 and 4 months. Of course there will be some people saying "I can't wait 3 to 4 months", but the reality is it is the right decision when you are looking for marketing stability and growth for many years to come.

Happy Labor Day Weekend It is well deserved to you, especially for the extra work you put here on the forums.
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Old 09-19-2018, 05:51 PM   #23
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Re: Website Investment ?


We have been able to build our business in Northern California by first creating a website, then using direct mail, blogs, newsletters and Facebook to drive customers to the website. I didn't use a website designer. I decided if I was going to have to feed a website designer all the information pics and copy, I might as well learn how to use marketing and SEO, and I learned copywriting.


I was able to build the website myself. We have been in business since 1995 using this strategy. We had business through the recession. It was slower, but we were able to keep going. I understand this won't work for everyone.
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Old 09-19-2018, 06:42 PM   #24
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Re: Website Investment ?


Yes you can do it yourself but take a 5000 website, the man hours you will put into it, research, learning ect, you sa saved yourself about 4 bucks an hour...

When you could have focused those hours making what you normally do...
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Old 09-19-2018, 06:47 PM   #25
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Re: Website Investment ?


You're right about the hours. However, I didn't do any of this. My wife, who is a partner in our business and in charge of the business side, actually did everything I mentioned, including the website and copywriting training. That's her area of expertise.



Sorry if it was confusing.
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Old 09-21-2018, 08:47 PM   #26
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Re: Website Investment ?


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You're right about the hours. However, I didn't do any of this. My wife, who is a partner in our business and in charge of the business side, actually did everything I mentioned, including the website and copywriting training. That's her area of expertise.



Sorry if it was confusing.
If your wife has intricate knowledge of website construction, then why even post here,

Kinda a dick thing....
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Old 09-22-2018, 11:32 AM   #27
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Re: Website Investment ?


I made my own it just took a lot longer than expected haha - would probably hire someone next time around, worth the investment.
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Old 01-10-2019, 04:43 PM   #28
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Re: Website Investment ?


Quote:
Originally Posted by AustinDB View Post
I started of with a lawyer that was $200/hr and when I found out that that one wasn't competent I moved to a $400/hr lawyer. There was also an online presence of reviews from people who had used that lawyer and I could make an educated decision.

When it comes to web designers, I've not been comfortable in finding a competent individual. The recommendation from my HBA was a dismal failure.

So, how do we contactors go about finding a competent website guy? Are we talking about the difference between a $60/hr website guy vs a $300/hr website guy?
Austin,

There is a company out there that focuses just on contractors and no one else. I know because I helped build it given I was tired of this industry always getting overlooked. It's what I do during the week and you can find the name of the company in my signature.


One thing I will say though is that it really comes down to how much work you want to put into something. If you are looking for a way to not have to manage anything to find a company that focuses only on your type of work. Otherwise, the stuff being offered to you will likely be sub-par.

If you are willing to do a lot of the work yourself then there are plenty of companies that will give you a quick fill-in type website. It really depends on how much work you want to do and how successful you want to be with it.
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Old 01-10-2019, 09:30 PM   #29
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Re: Website Investment ?


I have a Square Space website. Setup was super easy to do myself and I have absolutely no experience doing it. I spent a few hours on a weekend and it was up and running. The site with an email address that uses all the Google business tools costs me $400 a year. SEO is built in.

There is a lot of tutorials available to help you optimize the site. The templates are very sleek and professional looking.

I'm currently overhauling it right now because our project focus has shifted a bit and current site does not reflect it enough.

I decided to go this route over hiring a website developer, not really because of costs. More to do with control. I want to be able to update, change, add or take away at my own will without having to call the web developer everytime I want to add photos or change some minor thing.

There is plenty of other website builders like Wix that make it easy to build your own site in a few hours.

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Old 01-11-2019, 12:43 AM   #30
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Re: Website Investment ?


I've advocated for Houzz quite a number of times on this site. I have a free account there (never signed up for the Pro+ paid listing). About 5100 general contractors in my city (Toronto) are listed on it - and I am consistently ranked #1, as I work the ranking algorithm to the nth degree (lots of photos, lots of reviews, ongoing forum participation, rapid response to project inquiries, etc.). As a result I get around 250-300 project inquiries annually (and I only do about six projects a year, so I get to be extremely picky).

It is very photo-intensive, however - if you don't have very good photos of all your past projects it will be hard to move up the rankings. Women love it because it is very much focused on interior design/renovation - about 80% of the inquiries I receive come from women. I'm guessing, but I suspect the photo-intensive nature of the Houzz platform makes it 'easier' and less intimidating for them to reach out to a GC than is the case with other platforms that GCs use.
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Old 02-13-2019, 05:03 AM   #31
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Re: Website Investment ?


Websites are always a worthwhile investment. These days, you have to have a strong digital presence and people are likely to judge the quality of your work by the quality of your site. In their minds, they probably thing "they've not made the effort to have a good, functioning site, is this what their work is like as well"?
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Old 03-13-2019, 10:24 AM   #32
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Re: Website Investment ?


Websites definitely help you get exposure but you need to make sure that it is built right on the back end for SEO purposes.
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Old 03-27-2019, 06:57 AM   #33
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Re: Website Investment ?


The question of SEO is an interesting one - you mentioned a 'new SEO site', but is there not the option of expanding/optimising your existing site? Sites can usually be optimised regardless of the state they're in, and doing this can make a big difference to things like local search etc.

With that said, with your budget in mind, I'd second the views of a lot of people on this thread - I reckon investing in a slightly larger/more fleshed out site, with dedicated landing pages for your services that you can optimise etc is a very good plan!

Best of luck with it all.
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Old 04-26-2019, 08:03 PM   #34
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Re: Website Investment ?


a website is absolutely worth the price and the commitment. Your site doesn't have to be complex or confusing. A simple site like ours will work perfectly. Check it out and see if you can get some ideas on how to do yours. www.abileneconcrete.com if you do it yourself it can save you some money and can be worth it if you know what you are doing and what you want in your site. You can have someone do SEO for you. Let me know how I can help!
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Old 04-26-2019, 09:52 PM   #35
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Re: Website Investment ?


If I was trying to convince a wife I would explain how much a company would be spending advertising in phone books 2 or 3 decades ago. The shift to online doesn't mean the budget doesn't need to exist or is cut in half. Its just a shift.
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Old 05-06-2019, 03:49 PM   #36
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Re: Website Investment ?


For $5000 to $7500 you should be able to have a great looking site built with some bells and whistles and some on-page SEO. With this kind of budget though, you're not likely going to have the investment needed for SEO to rank on the first page of Google for search terms that drive quality leads. Also, a website alone won't deliver the results you're looking for like more incoming leads, better leads and more closed deals.

If you're looking to generate leads online and want more than a fancy online brochure, you're going to need three components if you're going to be successful.

1. Strategy - You need to answer who your ideal customer is, where they hang out online, how they consume information, how they make decisions, how they buy and much more. This will help keep your lead costs low and lead quality high because you've defined a small, yet highly qualified market that you can afford to consistently stay in front of.

2. Traffic - You need to feed your website with qualified traffic. Google (either search or paid) has a lot of traffic that is ready to buy now and can be incredibly effective for lead generation. Facebook is different in that people aren't on Facebook actively looking for a general contractor and it, in turn, won't be as effective or as simple for straight up lead generation.

3. Conversions - A website and landing pages that are designed to convert traffic into leads will outperform a brochure style website sometimes by over 10x. A website that converts traffic into high-quality leads will only happen though if you have a solid strategy in place and the right traffic coming to your website.

If you're really just looking for a way to generate leads when you need them, I think a Google Ads campaign would be the perfect solution in that it would cover these three steps, meet your budget and keep your wife happy Let me explain...

1. You'd need one landing page and one campaign. You could even use the landing page as a one-page website! This would keep you well below your budget and leave plenty to invest in driving traffic.

2. You can see results long before you've spent your entire budget.

3. If you set up conversion tracking you can see exactly how many leads the campaign is generating and the exact cost per lead. You can show this data to your wife and prove that it's a worthwhile investment.

4. After the campaign has been running for a while, you'll know which keywords drive the best and the most leads. If you then decide to invest in a full-blown website and SEO, you'll know which keyword to optimize for.

5. It doesn't require a complex strategy to pull off.

Hope this helps!
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Old 05-22-2019, 09:34 PM   #37
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Re: Website Investment ?


LPG,
What did you end up doing?
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Old 06-17-2019, 02:44 AM   #38
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Re: Website Investment ?


I do think website is one of the major investments in any business
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Old 06-17-2019, 05:31 AM   #39
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Re: Website Investment ?


My nearly 4 year old website that paid for itself week one sold about 38k worth of work so far in June. Iím just a one crew operation. Having it built was best decision Iíve ever made .


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Old 06-17-2019, 09:29 PM   #40
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Re: Website Investment ?


There's such a huge range in what it costs. My first site I think I paid $400 for, and it was great. Then I think I paid $3-4k for a site, and it was absolutely horrible, it was slow, never ranked for anything, etc. I'm happy with my site now- just had it redone for $1,500. Still trying to get the load speed down a bit, but so far I like it.

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