Ben Barclay, founder of digital marketing agency Des1gns, has produced websites for a range of clients, including City Distribution and Bathroom Solutions in Blackpool. He also heads up an Xbox party business, so it’s probably safe to assume he knows what he’s talking about when it comes to helping clients maximise their online presence
Q: How does the website building business work?
A: When clients come to us, they sometimes have an idea about what they want. Maybe they’ve seen a competitor’s website and want to emulate it. But typically it’s down to us to show them what options they have and lead them through the process. Lots of people, through no fault of their own, aren’t very well versed in the online world, so they are quite ignorant about what can be achieved. It’s part of my job to show them the possibilities.
Q: From an insider’s perspective, how has the internet changed how we all do business?
A: The best way to look at it is to compare Google with Yellow Pages. The internet is the biggest resource the world has ever known, but there is a lot of information out there and it’s easy to sink without a trace. People are naturally lazy. If your website doesn’t show up until the fifth page of results, the odds are most people won’t get that far, so you’ve lost them, rendering your sparkly new website essentially useless.
“If your website doesn’t show up until the fifth page of results, the odds are most people won’t get that far, so you’ve lost them, rendering your sparkly new website essentially useless”
Ben Barclay founder, Des1gns
Q: How much would a customised website cost?
A: It depends on the content. You can have a very basic, working website up and running within a day at a cost of a couple of hundred pounds. But obviously, the more features and content you have, the more time the project will take and the more money it will cost.
Q: What makes a good website?
A: It depends on the individual client. Those we did for City Distribution and Bathroom Solutions both incorporate downloadable brochures. That was an important element, not least because it is now saving the clients money. Instead of handing out printed brochures all over the place, they can just refer customers to the website, where they can browse the brochure at their leisure.
Q: What are the best ways to drive traffic to your site?
A: You need to spend a bit of time on relevant keywords and SEO [search engine optimisation]. A good example is what we did with the Bathroom Solutions website [pictured]. A customer would probably use the search terms ‘Blackpool’ and ‘Bathrooms,’ so we made that the domain name to ensure the site appears high in the list of search results. Other than that, memorable branding and slogans, which can then be replicated in-store and on delivery vans, are always good.
- Read more about making the internet work for you in the December issue of kbbreivew