The web has revolutionised the way companies do (or can do) business – from drawing new business, to managing it at a fraction of the cost of just a few years ago.
The web is available to everybody, not just the multi-national conglomerates. Used wisely, it can be the best and most cost effective investment. However companies can also make simple mistakes, which can make their business suffer.
GML Consulting specifically help businesses make the web work for them.
The starting point for being successful is that your use of the web must reflect your business. This involves asking the same questions that should be asked in creating and developing your business:
- Who are we
- Why are we in business
- Who do we want to work with
- What products/services do we offer
Effectively to be a true webmaster, we believe we must also be a business master. Creating a new or reviewing existing web presence should involve a look at the business, products and services.
It should also have a payback identified. A business does not invest in new plant and machinery or staff development, without having goal benefits, such as revenue increase or cost saving values. In the same way a business should not invest time and money in their web presence without this.
Some of the issues that a business may look at with their “web provider” include:
- Not enough target customers know what services we provide
- Existing customers only use part of our offering
- Existing customers do not know that our services are always changing
- We are a local/seasonal business, how do we get the best from our market
- Our product catalogue is large and always changing and therefore costs a lot to publish
- Our website is visited, but we are not getting enquiries
- Why are our competitors doing better than us
- The cost of processing orders is high therefore they must be large
- We want our own website to show our products and services, but this is not easy to update
- Uploading products, photos, videos is a full time “admin’ job” for a senior manager
- In my market I somehow need to punch above my weight
The web provider must understand these problems and help to see if the web can resolve some or all of them.
This is the starting point before looking at specific web services such as website design and development, back office application development and integration, corporate identity design, search engine optimisation or creative design.
The relationship developed between the business and web-provider should be dynamic – being able to react to changes in the market, the economy and the web itself on a timely basis. This should lead to the provider becoming proactive in a business partner way – for example reminding their clients in the hospitality trade that they should supply them with seasonal menus and pictures to update their websites; reminding clients they need to update their ecommerce system to accommodate the new VAT rate; informing them of events in their market or area that may influence their business.
The offerings of the web are varied and ever changing as are the types of businesses who are using it, and the best web providers enjoy this change. The experience of the provider is always growing and it will never be complete, because it can’t be. The provider must be confident to admit it is a new type of problem, knowing their existing and new clients are keen to work with them, because they can put an alternative perspective on the problem.