In an ideal world, your printing company would have a team of trained specialists working on your website at all times:
- Web designer, who designs what the visitor will see and how they experience it.
- Programmer, who understands the inner workings of the website and works with the designer to create a logical and attractive site. This person also takes care of security and keeps out the hackers.
- Web hosting company, who should be your partner in a secure and smoothly operating site.
- Writer (also known as Content Specialist) who helps you figure out what you should write, how it should be written and presented, and what type of imagery should accompany it. This person also helps you repurpose articles, brochures, videos, slideshows and materials that exist in other forms of media.
- Branding specialist, who helps you decide how you want to present your company to the world and what you want to be known for.
- Marketing strategist, who helps you figure out your overall strategy for attracting people to do business with you.
- SEO specialist, who implements tactics on getting your website in front of potential online customers.
Most print-related companies don’t have huge teams of website specialists. But one thing I have found, whether the company is large or small, is that the owner of the company rarely is involved in the web strategy.
Guess what? If you’re an owner, you should be.
As the owner of a printing or print-related company, no one (NO ONE) cares as much about your website as you do.
People on your team may have more expertise in certain areas than you do. But you have the big picture information. Who your customers are now and in the past. Why they want to do business with you. Why they don’t choose you for certain things. What types of offers they like. What their expectations are. Who your competitors are. Who your allies are. Where the business is headed.
This is important stuff.
This is why your website strategy should never be turned over to someone else. You don’t have to implement the tasks that need to be done, but you need to be deciding the path you are going to take. In the world of search engine optimization, there are dirty paths, clean paths, meandering paths, paths that Google has previously liked but now has thrown thorn bushes in the way, and clean but useless paths that don’t get you where you need to go.
You and your team — whoever that turns out to be — need to decide together and work together on the strategy.
To use a sports analogy, a professional sports team has a coach and a general manager and a staff of important people. And an owner. The owner has the big vision. The owner has a personal stake. The owner doesn’t micro manage the little decisions but, instead, chooses people who know what the heck they’re doing. And you can bet if there’s a major decision to be made, the owner is in on the conversation.
I’ll say it again. No one cares as much about your website as you do. Take your rightful place on the team.
Sandy Hubbard is author of the series #SEO4Printers, which is written specifically for printers who want to attract more online business. Over the years, Sandy has helped countless printing company owners take a fresh look at their businesses to see where the opportunities are. You can find @sandyhubbard each Wednesday on Twitter, helping to moderate #printchat.