We are used to them in regards to many professional services: hourly rates. This article focusses on the many reasons why in particular when it comes to web design they are a bad idea.
Picture this scenario: You are a Coffs Harbour business owner, and you have a website that currently does the bare minimum for your business. It is basically a fancy online business card. As we all know with the current economic situation and increasing competitive pressure we all must work hard to make a living. So, your plan might be to turn your website over time into a valuable asset for your business which actively generates more opportunities for your company.
You might make the step to engage with a web design company and you possibly even negotiate a great hourly rate. Everything sounds good to go, doesn’t it?
Unfortunately, the approach to do business billed at an hourly rate (which most web design companies do) is majorly flawed. Here is why:
Hourly rates enforce a negative cycle
You might have great ideas for your website, but being ‘on the clock’ for every move that you would like to make in regards to your website is no fun. No one has an unlimited marketing budget. Soon you must decide that doing fewer updates suits your budget much better.
Fewer updates result very often in a website with outdated content. Stale and stagnant sites are not liked by search engines such as Google, and your rankings will eventually go down.
By the way, your web designer is not going to be very happy in the long run either. If he or she finds a more efficient way to apply client changes he or she will be punished by hourly rates because things take less time to accomplish.
Similarly, if you find a web designer that works very slowly and takes their time to get anything done he or she will get rewarded for sluggishness.
The solution to the dilemma
It’s quite simple, and we have been doing it with our mobile phone contracts for many years: A flat fee service contract. For a set monthly fee you can arrange for a certain level of service. Why not have unlimited website updates? This is exactly what we are doing with our Website Service Agreements. Besides loads of other benefits, unlimited website updates are included in our Professional Website Management Plan.
It really is a win-win arrangement. You can turn virtually all of your website ideas into reality, can easily manage and oversee your budget and your website’s performance will bring you more and more measurable results. It also great for your web designer as he or she can build lasting business relationships.