Dental website design cost – How much does it really cost?

I’m sure you will agree it can be very difficult to choose someone to create a dental website for your business. Some may even say it’s as excruciating as toothache (I’ll stop the jokes here).

Or is it?

There are a few different options when it comes to having a dental website made for your business.

In this post, I will tell you exactly what you will need to know in order to get the best deal for your budget.

What does a dental website cost?

No one in life likes paying more than they have to for a service, I certainly don’t.

Web design however can be a difficult business to understand. You can get websites that cost nothing at all, and you can get websites that cost £100,000+

Another difficulty you face is that you would assume that the more expensive the web design the better the quality, but in a lot of cases you would be wrong.

But don’t worry, by the end of this blog you will have enough information to know what step to take next to get a new website for your dental business.

What is the average dental website design price?

dental web design cost

At the basic level, you can set up a dental website for less than £100. You could hire a freelancer from India and they will gladly put together a website that will look ok, and it will allow your visitors to find the information they need if they know the address of your website.

The problem with the above is that in my experience low paid developers don’t write very good code. Now I’m sure there are plenty of developers out there who would love to prove me wrong, but in my experience, you get what you pay for.

Low paid developers write low-quality code.  The code they write is quite sloppy and what that means to you is that the website will load slower than it should.

A slow website is not great for your customers and Google will penalise your website for being slow and can rank your competitors above you for this reason alone.

If you’re a legitimate practice and want to increase your business do not hire a low-paid developer.

Freelance website design for dentists

dental web design freelancer

If your budget is limited but you still want a good website for your dental business then a freelancer can be a good choice. Before starting Weeare I freelanced for many years picking up some vital skills along the way.

I personally know some very good freelance designers and developers.

The cost of a Freelance developer can range vastly. Some prices which I have seen over the years for freelance website designers would be:

–  £700 for a small site (Just starting out)
–  £1000 – £1500 (2-3 years experience)
– £2500+ (5+ years experience)

If you do think that your budget won’t stretch more than £2500 then a freelancer could be a great choice (but don’t make up your mind just yet) for your dental website, just make sure to check out their past work and customer testimonials so that you shouldn’t get any nasty surprises.

What do dental websites cost if they are made by a small agency?

dental website design uk

The next level up from a standalone freelancer is a small agency.

A small agency usually employs a few members of staff that work in many different areas such as design, development and marketing.

A small agency could be a good choice for your dental practice if you want to keep everything under one roof. For example, if you were going to hire a freelancer like above you may need to hire 2 freelancers, one to design and one to develop your website, and additionally, you may want to hire a third to help you market your website.

If the above sounds a bit of a hassle then that is where an agency comes in. A small agency such as Weeare (shameless plug) can help you stay organised by having a dedicated account manager, that person would then be your point of contact all throughout the service. This helps you focus on your business without having the worry of dealing with many different people.

Our search engine optimisation consultants will also make sure your website is optimised to be found on the search engines.

The typical cost of a dental website from a small design agency would be around £3000 – £7000.

Dental website design cost vs. Goals

dental website design price

Dental web design costs ultimately are going to be dependant on the level of service you require, the skills of your marketing consultants, and the goals that you want your new dental website to achieve.

Take two different dental practices for instance and compare their websites.

Dental practice number 1 is a dentist that has been around for 15 years and doesn’t have much room to grow any bigger. For dental practice number, one patient acquisition may not be its number one goal.

Dental practice number 1 may want to simply upsell to their current patients. For this, you would want your website to be designed in such a way which captures their current client’s details and then market to these people via email marketing.

The web design cost of dental practice number 1 would be around £3000 – £4000.

Dental practice number 2 however maybe a brand new practice. Their focus would be on acquiring new patients. The web design costs of dental practice number 2 would be much different.

Dental practice number 2 would need a website to be designed to acquire new patients and therefore the site would be designed in a different way. For example, they may want to incorporate a blog into their website for additional search engine traffic. The website would also have to be search engine friendly and you would also need to take out additional services such as search engine marketing and social media marketing.

Search engine marketing and social media marketing would be vital in the example above and rough costs of both services can start from £1500 a month and go all the way up to £3000+ depending on your competition.

Are you underpaying for your dental website?

Look at your competitor’s websites and if they come up before yours on the search engines then there is a good chance they have spent time and money getting their websites there.

To beat your competitors in the search results you are going to need to spend more than a few hundred pounds on a website.  If you don’t I wouldn’t expect to appear above these people on the search engines and I wouldn’t expect to take customers from them because they will show up before your business every time.

If you can not afford to spend a few thousand pounds on your website for your dental business then I would recommend saving that money until you can. The cost of a dental web design is well worth the investment if spent in the right place. Underpaying for your website design will probably leave you disappointed in the results.

Are you overpaying for your dental web design?

Unless you are a franchised dental business with many different locations and treatments then I wouldn’t justify in spending more than £10,000 initially on the web design.

If you are seeking dental marketing services then I also wouldn’t recommend spending more than a few thousand per month with an agency before you build a relationship with them. Start smaller and then increase your budget when you start getting results.

In my personal experience for a cost of £1500 – £2000 a month you should be the range that you should be looking to invest per month on marketing.

Our final advice on dental website design costs.

dental website design cost

Look at your competitor’s websites and decide if they look well made.  Then take into account how old the business is and how long their website been live.  If the website looks well made, the business has been around for years and so has the website, chances are they will take a bit of work to outrank in the search engine results page.

You should now have a better understanding of “what do dental websites cost”. If anything in this post has you confused or you would like to talk to us then drop us an email and we will help the best we can.

If you have a project in mind and would like to find out how to get a mobile responsive and search engine friendly website for your dental practice please feel free to contact us.

Web design Cardiff – How to pick the right agency for your business

Looking for web design in Cardiff? If you are, keep on reading.

Choosing a website design agency for your business is hard, isn’t it?

The term “Web Design Cardiff” brings up hundreds of search results alone.

How do you know what agency to work with? Do you go for someone who employs 100’s of staff? The cheapest quote? or something else?

In this blog post, we will look at everything we think you should know about choosing a web designer for your business.

If you just want to see what offers we have on, and the quality work we do you may just want to check out our portfolio.

Other Services we offer

Responsive web design in Cardiff

responsive website design cardiff

When looking for web design in Cardiff you are going to hear the term responsive web design thrown around a lot.

Responsive web design is an approach of designing and developing a website that works on all devices, such as:

  • Mobile phones
  • Tablets (iPads, Kindles)
  • Laptops
  • Desktop Computers
  • And More

Your new website must be mobile responsive if you want any form of return on investment. If your website isn’t mobile responsive then the search engines will punish your business by showing you lower in the rankings.  You may want to check out our post search engine marketing Cardiff for more info on our SEO services.

A website that isn’t mobile responsive is like hiring a builder to build a home for you and them not putting a roof on it, wiring in the electricity or putting a front door on your new house because it was a little bit cheaper for them not to do so.

You have to make sure that your new website will be mobile responsive to give your business a chance to be found on the search engines.

In the past we have seen a massive jump in the search engine rankings just by making our client’s websites mobile responsive, that could mean the difference between staying in business or shutting up shop.

Some of our competitors build websites that are not mobile responsive or they give you an option whether to pay extra for your new website to be mobile responsive. Make sure that your site is mobile responsive before handing over any money or signing any contracts, if it is not, walk away and talk to our team of expert consultants.

Cheap website design vs. a custom website design

cheap website design

Cheap website design may be an option for you if you have no budget and want to get a website up and running.

A cheap website more than likely won’t get found online, the massive drawback of having a cheap website design is that you will have to tell potential customers your website address and tell them to visit it.

By doing the above however you are not using your website to its full potential, a good website should generate you leads, you shouldn’t have to keep telling people to visit yourwebsite.com.

Think of it, how many people could you possibly come into contact with every day?

If you have to tell people to visit your website, you are doing it wrong.

Take our website for example. Sure we have our web address on our business cards, but I can’t remember the last time I handed a business card out to someone and told them to visit our website.

Make no mistake, business cards are useful, but for us as a web and digital marketing company it makes more sense for our website to bring customers to us, rather than getting out in people’s faces and selling our services.

And your website should too!

There are a few problems with cheap websites, such as:

Low-quality web design code can harm your business

bad website design

Low-quality code can’t be seen by the average person.

To you, a bad website may not look great, but to us, as a web and marketing agency, a bad website starts with bad code. A website that contains bad code, can still look great.

We have seen websites that look beautiful, Only to look underneath to see some terrible code.

Bad code under a website is the equivalent of buying a Porsche and fitting it with a Vespa engine.

Websites with bad code will struggle with:

  • Search engine ranking
  • Website speed
  • User experience

Bad code can affect all of the above. Bad code can confuse the search engines with what your site is actually about.

Bad code can take up more resources than it needs to, therefore, it takes longer for the website to load (bad user experience), causing your users to click the dreaded back button.

Bad search engine optimisation – Do you want your customers to find you?

search engine optimisation cardiff

We have been contacted in the past by people looking to go into business and only have a budget of £300. For this, they want a website and all the marketing that they can get to reach the first page of Google.

Not happening.

Some business areas are so competitive that it could take years for your business to get to that first page.

What other industry do you know where someone is willing to work around the clock for a few years for £300?

Thankfully most industries, especially in Wales, are not that competitive for a new business to break into the search results. Our average time so far for our clients has been around 4-6 months.

If you’re paying a few hundred pounds for a website, how much search engine optimisation do you think you are going to get?

No time = low-quality control. Don’t skimp on testing.

website design testing

No website agency will make a website that is 100% free from errors. Us included.

What we have noticed is the cheaper website design agencies tend to have terrible quality control.

We always keep an eye on our competitors, in fact, we would guess that most of their website views are from us checking up on them, I joke. But you get the point.

When checking out some of the lower quality agencies we often see that their projects have missing links, broken images, pages that don’t exist, and so on.

Obviously, these agencies are not doing this on purpose but they are unable to spend the time necessary to make sure the quality of the website is up to scratch.

A typical website design project for us lasts 6 to 8 weeks. That’s design, development, and quality control.  If you are only paying a few hundred quid for a website then there is no way that the agency can spend the amount of time needed to make sure your new website will work as it should.

How can you compete online if your website is not search engine friendly?

If you’re a business in Cardiff and you need website design then there is a good chance that your industry is going to be competitive.

We know all about working in competitive industries. Web design in terms of the competition is up there with services such as finance and insurance.

Take the keywords web design Cardiff which is one of the main keywords that we are raking for with this article.  The keyword web design Cardiff has over 1.3 million competing websites (a lot of competition).

The keyword web design Cardiff in the Google advertising tool has a recommended bid of £5 to £10.  This means that every time someone searches for web design Cardiff and clicks on your add you would pay that amount of money per click.

At this time of writing, the keyword web design Cardiff gets around 1000 searches a month.  If you were to target each of these searches and pay the minimum amount of £5 then the keyword web design Cardiff would cost you £5000 every month.

SEO, on the other hand, will take longer to get results but when you are finally on that first page of the search results each click sent to your website is then technically free.

That is the power of SEO, and unless you are willing to pay £5000 a month for clicks I would highly suggest investing in SEO for your business.

If you hire a cheap web designer in Cardiff you are not getting any SEO at all, your website will also lack the various on-page SEO which will further negatively impact your search engine rankings.  If you want to compete you will need to spend the required money to do so, if you don’t your competitors will.

If you want your customers to do something your website design needs to reflect that

One of our questions we first ask our clients is “what do you want your website to do?” Some of the time our clients have replied that they don’t know, they just know that they need a website because someone they trust has told them they need one.

When a client knows that they need a website but they don’t know why we take them through various different options so they can best decide what they want their website to do for their business.  Once the client knows what they want the website to achieve we can then begin designing a website for them.

A cheap web design agency isn’t going to discuss a strategy with you and they’re not going to build a website around your business goals.

A cheap web design agency is going to use a template that they have used for all of their past clients, edit your information into it and then change the colours of the website to match yours and put it live.

When choosing website design for your business make sure you discuss what you want the website to achieve beforehand.

Are free website building tools any good?

free website design tools

Services such as Wix, Weebly, Sitey, and many other free website tools are getting better.

In fact, some of them produce websites that look great.

But…

As mentioned above they still contain bad code.

Another massive problem that all of these website building tools have is that you are the person building them.

Now you may have a great eye for detail, and you may have even read up on SEO best practices, but you would still be at a disadvantage over your competitors who have paid to have their websites professionally made and marketed.

Think of it this way, would I be able to read a few books or articles on your industry and then be better at it than someone who has been in the industry for 10 years? Of course not, especially if the industry was to do with anything manual.

In my personal experience, I have never witnessed a website that was built by one of these free website creating tools rank on the first page of the search engine results.  Do a random search right now, click on some websites and scroll to the bottom, see how many of them are made by websites like wix.  I bet you won’t find many or any at all.

If you would rather concentrate on what you do well and leave building a website to someone else I would highly recommend it, it will cost more, but at least it would be done right.

As Bobby Boucher’s mama says “Pre-built website themes are the devil”

web design themes

A lot of agencies use pre-built website themes these days. The reason being they are cheap to buy and it takes 90% of the development time away meaning more profit for the agency.

Website themes are a quick and easy way for an agency to get money out of you while not carrying out any work that will help your business.

Themes are cheap (< £50), take much longer to rank (more money needed to be spent rank them) and agencies that use themes generally aren’t very good at what they do.

Personally, I would not use a theme to represent my business. You shouldn’t either.

Why your new website should be based on a content management system.

wordpress website design in cardiff

A content management system is the back end of the site, which only you and your staff will see and get to use.

Some agencies develop their customer’s websites to be single page files, they do this so any updates that you need, will be done through the website code. This means you will have to pay them to make any small changes unless you want to learn to program that is.

A content management system (CMS) such as WordPress, when developed correctly allows you to be able to edit all of the content on your website with ease.

Some of our past customers have told us they didn’t think they would be able to edit their website because it would be too complicated. Usually, around an hour later we have shown them exactly how to do it they can’t believe how simple it all is.

Here at Weeare we develop custom websites on the CMS WordPress and we use custom fields through the site. These custom fields allow you to type text in on the back end and they automatically fill in on the front end, easy pips!

(If you would like a demo of how simple this is please get in touch)

Using custom fields means that we could save your business thousands in update costs alone.

Free website hosting to all of our customers

free website hosting for 1 year

All websites need hosting, website hosting is where your website files live.

Some agencies charge you extra and extortionate amounts per month for hosting, we don’t.

At Weeare we offer all of our new customers 1 year of free website hosting just to say thanks for choosing us, (unless you have a business generating between 30,000 to 100,000 views a month then there is a hosting fee).

You can however keep your existing hosting if you would like, that is no problem at all.

What we can offer to you.

website design in wales

If you have read through all of the above you now have a better idea of what to look out for when making the choice to hire a web designer in Cardiff.

We understand that choosing a web designer for your project can be difficult, but hopefully, you can see that we do some great work for our existing clients and we would love to work with you too.

Our website design & development packages start off at £2500 and include:

  • A custom mobile responsive website
  • On-page SEO
  • 1-year free hosting

Take a look at some of our web design work

If you would like to work with one of the best small web design agencies in Wales then we would love to talk to you, you can see some of the great work that we have carried out for our clients below.

Medical website design

medical website design

OIC is a medical company in the USA who produce orthopaedic implants. We worked with them creating a mobile responsive website which was much easier to use than their previous website. We also made sure that their brand new website was more search engine friendly than the previous website.

Restaurant website design

restaurant web design

La Bodega, a small family-run restaurant in Merthyr Tydfil hired us to re-design their existing website which wasn’t search engine friendly or mobile responsive. Because of this their existing website was sitting on the 5th page of Google.

We helped La bodega be the first independent restaurant that shows up in the search engine rankings.

La bodega’s new website also beats the major chain restaurants such as Frankie and Bennys, Nandos, Table Table, Pizza Time, and more. Our work has increased online bookings by 30%.

One of our social media marketing campaigns raised awareness for the restaurant when 30,000 people saw one of our posts which went viral in our small town of Merthyr Tydfil.

Recruitment website design

recruitment web design

Raw recruitment hired us to design and develop a brand new website for their recruitment agency. The website was built with custom functionality that would allow CV uploading, email address capturing, job posting, and the ability to blog.

E-commerce website design

eccomerce web design

One of our first e-commerce website design projects that we ever made. Merthyr chainsaw hired us to create a website for their garden equipment business.

With over 600+ products and hundreds of variations, Merthyr Chainsaw was a pretty big website, by creating a new website rather than using eBay we were able to make a website that helped cut the costs of transaction down by 5%.

Photography website design

photography web design

Reel photography came to us because their existing website looked bad and was so frustrating to use. We helped them create a new easy to use website that was mobile responsive and search friendly as standard.

Medical website design

aesthetic web design

Skinhance aesthetic training sells botox training and other aesthetic courses within the UK. The market that they are in is very competitive. Their competition had been around for years, so we knew it would be tough to outrank them on the search engines.

After a bit of work, we were able to do so. We outranked their competitors and put Skinhance as the number 1 spot for many of their keywords. Many of these keywords were targeted to Cardiff, Bristol, and Oxfordshire.

Personal training website design

personal training web design

TK-Fitness, a personal training company in Cardiff approached us to redo their existing website which once again wasn’t user or search engine friendly. TK-Fitness before hiring us couldn’t be found anywhere near the first page of the search engines.

2 weeks after going live TK-Fitness’ new website hit the first page of Google for search terms that get over 700+ people searching for it each month.  Because of this, TK-Fitness is getting more personal training sessions booked than ever before.

Round-Up

Wew, that was a long one.

Hopefully, we have covered enough for you to understand what to look out for when choosing a website design for your business.

Some key takeaways should be:

  • Make sure your website is mobile-friendly
  • Make sure your website is search engine friendly
  • Make sure you have clear goals when designing your website
  • Make sure your new website is built on a CMS and will be easy to edit & update
  • Do not use a free website builder
  • Do not use website themes, custom is better 100% of the time

Next Steps

If you have any questions about our web design services or would like a quote please contact us.

How a family run restaurant outranked the big guys & how you can too

Not being found online is most business’s idea of a nightmare, wouldn’t you agree?

La Bodega, unfortunately, found themselves in the same situation as many,  They had paid for a website previously, but it was now gathering dust rather than collecting bookings. We were hired to change that, and we did.  Through the combination of our website design and seo services we took them to page 1.

La Bodega’s old website was nothing to celebrate about. It was old, it didn’t work on mobile devices and online bookings were low. Search engine rankings for the business were also terrible and La bodega was nowhere to be seen on the first, second, third or fourth page of the search engine results for restaurants in Merthyr Tydfil.

La Bodega like many other businesses are sold websites that do nothing for their business and in our opinion, the main reason for this is not that people intentionally go out of their way to take a businesses money and run, but simply because they don’t really know what they are doing and don’t know what they are doing will cause harm.

Someone could easily build a free website or even build a website for their business for less than £50. These websites may look fine, but no one will ever find them.

For your customers and La Bodega’s to find them they needed to be on the first page of the search engines. To be on the first page a combination of events need to occur such as:

The website must be built to be search engine friendly.

Without going too technical a website needs to be programmed correctly with the correct tags and fields within it to let the search engines know what the website is about. Otherwise, you are making it difficult for the search engines to find your website.

This was true with La Bodega. These simple tags were not included within the website code, because of this Google and the other search engines had no idea that La Bodega was a restaurant in Merthyr Tydfil.

A lot of themes have the correct fields and tags within them, but sometimes the people who tend to buy these cheap themes have no idea on how to input the data correctly.

A lot of our competition still uses website themes and they have no idea on how to correctly optimise a website for the search engines. This is so frustrating for us as these websites over their lifetime will do nothing for their owners.  It takes money from you and makes us all look like thieves.

A website that uses a theme may look great, but if no one finds it then it is like opening a brand new shop, having the best possible interior only for the entrance to that shop to be hidden behind 4 brick walls.

Doesn’t work on mobile devices

The original La Bodega restaurant was strange in the fact that sometimes the mobile layout worked and then it didn’t. It was as if the website had a life of its own.

Since 2015 Google has been ranking websites based on their user experience. A website that would not work on a mobile device would cause a negative user experience (frustration) and would therefore be a negative when it comes to search engine rankings.

The new La Bodega restaurant now works on mobile devices and because of this, it has helped with the search engine rankings. If your website doesn’t work on mobile devices then you should really think of getting a new website. Being non-mobile-friendly in 2017 is a massive no-no.

No backlinks

Backlinks are still very important when it comes to search engine optimisation (if you need help with your marketing talk to our search engine optimisation consultants). For those who don’t know what backlinks are, they are links from other websites pointing back to yours.

The reason why backlinks are important is that they tell the search engines:

  • What your website is about
  • If your website can be trusted.

Initially, La Bodega only had a small number of backlinks, but we were able to reach out to others in the same industry and get some links to La Bodega which helped increase its search engine positioning.

We managed to get good trustworthy links from websites such as Wales online, just by reaching out to them and telling them about the new website.

If your website doesn’t have any backlinks there are a few ways of getting them. One of the best is to reach out to other businesses that are in a related field to yours.

For example, a painter and decorator may have a website that could link back to yours if you’re in a plumbing and electrical field, the way you can link back to yours is by asking them could you write a blog about something their audience may be interested in. This creates more content for their website which is good for them and the backlink pointing to your original website is good for you.

The more relevant the links and the more trusted the source the better.

Conclusion

By helping La Bodega improve its website by making it mobile-friendly, search engine friendly, building backlinks and developing the website from the ground up we were able to give it a good foundation when it came to marketing the website.

Within a few weeks, the change was drastic. La Bodega was no longer on the 5th+ page of Google, but was sitting on the front page for various search queries. This increased the website bookings and now the restaurant is much fuller than ever before.

If you have a website that is doing nothing for your business then you may want to check on some of the mentioned problems above. By fixing these you are giving your business a better chance of getting more customers online.

If you would like your business to rank higher in the search engines and to improve your online sales/inquiries/website traffic be sure to sign up to our newsletter below.

The power of a responsive website in wales.

Whether you’re a huge business in Cardiff or a small business in the valleys a responsive website can help your business reach its goals. But what exactly is a responsive website?

Well right now you are reading this article on www.weeare.co.uk and depending on the device you are using to browse the website you will see it displayed in different ways. If you’re on a mobile phone you will see a different layout to someone who is browsing on a desktop or a tablet device.

At this point you maybe thinking but why do I care? Well to answer that you will need to understand that websites were originally built to be viewed on desktop computers. But in 2016 more and more people are using mobile phones to browse the internet. When browsing an old site on a mobile phone that isn’t responsive it looks broke.

That means if a visitor is landing on your website on their phone and you have an old site that isn’t mobile responsive then they are going to see a site that doesn’t display correctly.

There are many problems with having a website that doesn’t work on different devices, but the main problems would be:

• A non responsive website causes your users to become frustrated as navigating around your website is a nightmare.
• A non responsive website will be punished in the search engine rankings.

The last point is massive to all business owners. It doesn’t matter if you provide the best services, the best prices have the best customer testimonials, all of that counts for nothing. If your website isn’t mobile responsive then Google, Bing and the other search engines are pushing your website to the bottom of the pile while your competition is being pushed higher up the search results.

Being in a better position in the search engines means that your competitors websites are getting more visitors and turning those visitors into customers, while your old website is sitting on the 4th page of Google never to be seen.

What can you do about it?

If you don’t like being outranked and have your competition steal money from right under your nose then you will need to have your site redesigned and re developed.

If you’re looking for web design in wales we can help. You may also be interested in our SEO Cardiff service or our seo consultancy

Why Your Website is More Important Than Your Business Card

For most businessmen and women networking is one of the biggest sources of new business. Typically at networking events you will hand out business cards. Business cards are a great way for potential customers to get into contact with you, but they are limited.

Limited Information

Business cards can only hold a limited amount of information. Typically your name, job title, phone number and link to your website. That is it, nothing more will fit. Chances are if you attend a networking event you are going to pick up business cards with pretty much the same content printed on each. John Doe, Marketing Manager. Jayne Doe, head of sales etc.

Websites however offer a lot more information about you, your company, your services and because of this they are way more valuable than a simple piece of card.

Always open

A business card is a great way of getting someone to remember your contact details. Usually however business cards just end up in a draw locked away somewhere. Websites on the other hand keep your business open 24 hours a day.

They answer questions 24 hours a day, and they can even make sales 24 hours a day. In short your website is your most powerful sales tool.

Conclusion

A good designed website will allow your brand values to shine through, will provide all types of information about your company including:

• FAQs
• Contact Information
• Latest News
• Fresh Content

A website can do so much more than a business card, but yet less than half of small business owners don’t own one. If your small business doesn’t have a website then you are losing out financially.  Talk to us about our website design and search engine optimisation deals that we offer, if you want some advice you can talk to our seo consultants today.

What Your Welsh Business Misses by Not Having a Website

It is estimated that less than half of small businesses don’t have a website. When I heard this stat I thought I was having my leg pulled, but after researching more it is true. I couldn’t get over it.

Savvy business owners know that their website is their best selling sales tool bar none. A website works for their business 24/7, 365 days a year. Their website allows them to branch into locations further than any physical location could. But still in 2016 there are a lot of small businesses without a website.

There are a few reasons for this, some of which I have heard first hand, I have been told over the years that businesses don’t need websites because the owner doesn’t use the internet, and that businesses don’t need websites because they get 100% of their work from word of mouth. Both in my opinion are crazy.

It doesn’t matter how big or small your business is, you should always be looking for a competitive edge, and in our opinion having a great website is a great way of getting ahead.  Add to the fact that there are thousands of people searching right now for what you sell, you would have to be crazy not to reach them.  If you do want to reach more clients check out our search engine optimisation cardiff post

Story Time

Let me tell you a short story about something that happened to me recently.

It was a Friday night, we had just closed the office for the weekend and my partner and I wanted to have a night in, order some takeaway and just have a chilled evening. The restaurant that we often go to sells the best onion bhajis I have ever tasted, so it was decided that we would order the takeaway from the restaurant that we had been to before.

I opened up my phone, searched for the restaurant online and couldn’t find it. I was desperate for those bhajis so I even trawled through the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th pages of Google, but I could not find it. The restaurant did not have a website.

Needless to say, we ended up ordering from another Indian who had a website, which displayed their menus and contact details. Their onion bhajis however were terrible, but that’s something for TripAdvisor.

By not having a website, I was unable to find the business and their menu and I’m sure there are many others in the same boat as me who order elsewhere. By not having a website they were losing out on a lot of business in the local area.

Why you should invest in a website

Other than losing money there are a few other reasons why you should invest in a website for your business.

1. Finding You

By having a website that is easy to find and easy to use, you are giving your customers the opportunity to contact you. If you don’t have a website then your potential customers will either go straight to your competitors or if your lucky they will spend time trying to find your website on a directory site like the yellow pages, but that’s if you’re very lucky.

If you need help with your digital marketing, talk to our SEO consultants.

2. You’re in business

A website shows that you are still in business. With so many businesses failing within the first year if your business ranks online and your customers are finding you then they will know you’re still in business.

If you don’t have a website then your customers will think you have gone bust and once again look elsewhere for the services that you are providing.

3. Reaching a bigger audience

If your lucky people within your local area will come to your business when they want your services, but your overall reach is very small. Your business is limited to the town in which it resides.

A website however can be global, or it can still be local but reach a bit further. A good example of this is our own business. At weeare we offer web design and marketing in Merthyr Tydfil, our physical location is in Merthyr. Our website however allows us to work in Cardiff, Pontypridd, Newport, Barry, Wrexham, and many other places.

If we didn’t have a website then our clients would all be local. Our website has allowed us to work with clients from around the UK, Australia, Canada, and the USA.

4. Inexpensive

Print, TV, and radio are expensive. We know we have priced them for our own business. Online marketing however is inexpensive. It’s also much more targeted. Facebook advertising for example can start off from a few pounds per day and generate good quality leads.

Email marketing is another avenue worth pursuing. Email marketing out of all marketing channels has the highest ROI. A website allows you to build your email marketing list very cheaply.

5. Testing and tweaking

No other marketing method allows you to test and tweak your message as quickly and easily as a website.

There have been various studies over the years on how small changes on a website can increase the rate in which visitors turn into customers. One such example can be seen in this article – which colours should I use for my website and why?

In the above article, a simple colour change of a button increased conversions on a website by 21%.

Imagine the cost difference between tweaking an advert meant for print, TV or radio compared to just changing the colour of the button on your website.

How Often Should I Redesign My Website?

When is a good time to redesign your Website? It’s a good question without a real concrete answer because there are a lot of factors to take into consideration, but in this article we will give you some of the biggest reasons why you would want to change your website.

If your website is already breaking any of these rules then there is a good chance that your website needs a redesign.

Existing Branding

The first reason to redesign your website is if it doesn’t conform to your businesses branding. Your business website should reflect your identity and your brand, if your business has adopted a new identity or is pursuing a new branding approach then your website will want to reflect these business changes.

We see it all the time, a company will use their business colours on a website and think that it reflects their brand, when the messages and imagery on the website couldn’t be further away from the image that they want to portray.

Your Competition

In a competitive market things are going to move quicker. In the web design and development market that we are in we have to make changes to our website all the time in order to compete. We have redesigned our website twice this year. In a competitive market you should be looking to redesign your website at least once every 12-18 months.

Less competitive markets can get away with 2-3 years per redesign, but having said that you will still need to make sure that your website is up to current standards. For example, the mobilegeddon roll out by Google meant that non-responsive websites would be penalised in the search engines.  If your website is getting penalised because it’s not responsive or your search engine optimisation isn’t very good then talk to our seo consultants, we can help.

A good rule of thumb is to check your competitors, if their sites are getting changed on the regular and look better than yours then you are probably going to need a redesign. If your competitors are old on the other hand you could still take this as an incentive to change your site up and become a leader in your industry through your website.

Current Standards

As we mentioned above if your website doesn’t meet current browsing standards then it would be time for a redesign. Websites that don’t work on mobile devices (mobile responsive) are punished in the search engines, which means your visitors will see your competitor’s websites before yours if theirs works on phones.

One of our clients had a website that didn’t work on phones or any other mobile device and they were hovering around the 5th page on Google before we met them.

After developing their website with the current standards and optimising their site through our SEO services they hit the very first page for many competitive keywords.

Why don’t people redesign their websites?

We see it all the time, very successful businesses who leave their websites rot online. They simply don’t keep their website updated because they see no value in having a website. This is understandable, if you have neglected your website then there is a good chance that your visitors don’t even find it online, if they do they probably don’t trust you to do business with you. An old website is off-putting, if your website is old it’s time for a redesign.

We have found that websites are neglected because businesses think of them as a one-time investment, but the truth is websites should be updated constantly, whether this is through new content or a new design.

If you have a business you should be budgeting for a new web design the same as your budget for office equipment, machinery, or transport. Your website is by far your most important sales tool, you wouldn’t let your companies top salesman wear a ripped suit, smell of body odor and have last weeks food stuck between their teeth, so don’t let your website look neglected.

Conclusion

To conclude and to keep it short you should aim to redesign your website:

• 12 – 18 months in a competitive market.
• 24 – 36 months in a noncompetitive market.
• When your competitors do.
• When technology changes.

Why Does My Business Need a Website?

If you’re asking yourself why does my business need a website? You have come to the right place. In this article we will look at the benefits of having a good website for your business.

Over the years we have spoken to many business owners, some have told us “we don’t need a website, all of our business comes from referrals” to “website? I don’t use the internet!”, looking back some of these responses bring a smile to our faces. But the bottom line is that if in 2016 you don’t have a website or you don’t have a website that is responsive then you are losing out on money.

A website if done right can be the best tool available for promoting your business. Your website works every hour of the day, every day of the year. It never goes on holiday and never needs time off for a doctors appointment. A website is your shop window to the world, what you choose to display is up to you.

The internet never closes unlike a traditional shop, so having a website allows your business to be open all of the time, even when your tucked away sleeping.

Websites are not just for global markets either. Having a good website can open your business up to new markets in the local area. Weeare for example is a web design agency in Merthyr, but we offer Web design services in Pontypridd, Cardiff, Newport, Neath and many other locations, even though our physical location is in Merthyr.

Being Legitimate

A well designed website can make your customers believe in your services and give you instant credibility, the opposite is also true. An old, out-dated website will make your potential customers not trust you and think that you don’t care about your business. A website can provide real value when going up against bigger competition, if your website is designed with your users in mind then it doesn’t matter how big your competition are you can still compete on an even playing field.

One of our customers, a small family run restaurant needed a new website designed and developed for their business. Their old site was tired and dated, it wasn’t search or user friendly and at the time of contact it was on the 4th page of Google. The restaurant owners spoke to us, we defined the goals for the website and set to creating a new website. What resulted was a better website that began to rank on the first page for their chosen keywords.

This family run restaurant was able to compete with huge companies such as:

• Nandos
• Frankie and Bennies
• Pizza Hut
• Table Table

In fact we didn’t just compete, we outranked them!

Costs

If your just starting out then having a website can be much cheaper than renting a physical space in the high street. Websites can also draw in visitors from further afield than a shop ever could.

Website design and development pricing can be confusing because so many agencies offer different levels of service. You can get a website from free to over £50,000. Online marketing in our opinion is much more affordable than traditional methods too.  Social media marketing and search engine marketing can start at a few hundred pounds to a few thousands a month, where as traditional marketing is more expensive and less effective.  if you need help with your marketing, talk to our search engine optimisation consultants.

Websites can also minimise the amount of money spent on sending out literature. We have spoken to many businesses over the years that spend thousands monthly on brochures that tell people about the services that they provide. A website allows you to cut down on printed material as your customers can now find out about your services online.

A website is also worth having if you get most of your business through networking, when you first meet someone at a networking event, one of the first things they will do is check your business card and check your website, If both look good, instant credibility.

Showcase your work

There is no better way to show off the work that you have done than to do so on your website. A website can show off recent work through a gallery, case study or even client testimonials. If you want customers to purchase a service through you then you can bet they will want to see past results and what others have said about your services.

Conclusion

If you want more business, a way to show off your work, an employee that works around the clock without taking a day off then you will want a website.

If you already have a website and simply want to generate more traffic check out our SEO Cardiff Service

5 ways your website is driving customers away from your business

Your website is one of your most important sales tools, but so many businesses get their website wrong. Most websites talk too much about themselves and don’t provide the content that their customers are looking for.

We have put together a small list of 5 ways your website is driving customers away from your business, and by the end of this article you should know how to fix the problems that we mention.

Over complicated navigation

Your websites navigation shouldn’t cause users to overthink, everything they need should be within a maximum of 2 clicks, if it isn’t you are just asking to cause frustration for your customer, which is never a good thing.

The back button is one of the most used buttons on a website browser and your customers are much more likely to click the back button than scroll through a badly designed website.

Make your website navigation easy to use and navigate and you will improve the bounce rate on your website. The bounce rate by the way is a statistic that measures the amount of people who visit one page on your website and then leave. A high bounce rate is not a good thing.

Non Responsive website

Websites in this day and age should be responsive. If they are not you are providing your users with a terrible experience, which will cause them to leave your website and you are getting punished by search engines like Google because they know that unresponsive websites do not provide users with good experiences.

For more information on responsive websites and how they can impact your business check out this article – FAQ, What is responsive web design?

Web Page Speed

1,2. That’s all it takes for a user to leave your website. 2 Seconds. If your website is taking longer than 2 seconds to load then you are pushing your customers into the arms of your competitors. You can improve the speed of your website by doing the following:

• Don’t use website themes that contain code bloat.
• Make sure your code is optimised for performance.
• Optimise images for the web.
• Use a good hosting provider.

A slow website is one of the main reasons why your customers would be clicking the back button. Over the years we have worked with companies that have had some terribly slow websites and most of the time it has boiled down to bad code. One of our client’s old websites took 7 seconds to load. They were spending thousands a month on PPC marketing and most of their traffic was clicking back before even seeing the business’s offer.

If you have a slow website you are killing your marketing efforts, please reach out to our seo consultants today and they can help.

Don’t make people think

Causing your users to think will ensure that they will click the back button very quickly. This may sound silly, but with so much information bombarding your user, even the simplest of decisions can take time to perform.

The naming conventions on your website are very important. If you have a services section on your website but call it something like “facilities” then your customers may not know that they are the something. This will cause them to leave your site because they won’t know where the service section is located.

The average person visiting your website will be looking for services, so help them find them by not making them think.

Outdated Content

As a small business owner, I understand that most of us are constantly busy and we really don’t have the time to be blogging or updating our websites, but the truth is you have to. You have to make time for updating the content on your website because if you don’t you leave a bad taste in your user’s mouths.

An outdated website gives your potential customer a bad first impression. Imagine landing on a website and seeing that the last article they wrote was in 2012. This will lead them to think either:

• You don’t care about your business.
• You are out of business.

If you don’t update your content you are also missing out on the SEO benefits. Adding more content to your website can increase your search engine rankings, it can increase the number of social shares that your website has, and in general, can improve the number of inbound leads and sales.

Conclusion

If your website is guilty of any of the above sins, don’t worry all is not lost. It is never too late to improve your website whether that be from the design, content to page speed.

If your website needs to be redesigned then please talk to us, or if you think your website is ok and you just need more traffic check out our search engine optimisation cardiff page

What’s Wrong With Using Website Design Templates?

Here at weeare we develop custom made websites for your business. We find out your goals, your customer needs and we even find out about your competitors, when we know all of the above we then set about designing a website to fit those needs and solve your business problems. We also create search engine friendly websites by optimising your website for the keywords your users would use to find your product or service.  For more info check out our Cardiff SEO page

We believe that custom website design and development is the only way to provide your business with an online solution. Other agencies in our area however don’t offer custom work and start their website development fees off from as little as £100. You maybe thinking great, I can save money and get a website for my business, but you would be wrong,  a website based on a theme is not good for your business.

What is a theme/template?

A theme/template is a design that has been created for your general industry. If you’re working in the restaurant industry then the theme would be built around restaurants.

Why your business shouldn’t use a theme

Themes are extremely popular, one of the best selling paid themes online has over a 245,000 downloads. The theme is hugely successful and the owners of the theme have made so much money from one product which is great for them, but not for you as a business owner. As the theme gets more successful, more and more businesses are using the same website template. This means 245,000 other businesses would have a similar looking website to your own.

How do you plan to stand out from the competition when there are 245,000 websites with the same look and feel to them? If you sell a product or service that is quite similar to your competitors then you will need to stand out in other ways, a good website is one way of doing so, but if you go down the route of using a website theme then you are diluting your chances of standing out.

Themes are rigid

Website themes are not very flexible and quite often the people selling them to businesses have no background in development, that means if you need a feature added to your website then your probably out of luck. Website design agencies that don’t create their own work quite often use page builders and drag and drop software to create your website. What that means to you is that your website is being built by someone who has no idea of:

• Website development best practices
Search engine optimisation techniques
• Accessibility best practises

All of the above are very important when deciding to have a website built for your business. Without them you are not going to be found online by your customers, you are going to create a user experience that doesn’t help your customer find what they need and in some circumstances you could even be discriminating against disabled users without even knowing about it.

Forget about all the above for a minute though, let’s pretend by some miracle a person with no design/development experience gets all of the above right (they won’t), what happens when you want to add something to the site that doesn’t come with the theme? Let’s say you have heard that email marketing is one of the most effective ways of gaining new business and you want to add a popup to your website to get users to sign up to your email list, the only problem is that your “web developer” doesn’t know how to implement this because the theme doesn’t come with a popup or an email system integration. What do you do? “upgrade to a better template”.

Easy to recognise

A website theme is not built for your business, your content or it’s users, so to make it work for your business you will need to fit the content that you want into the website template rather than designing around the content that you do have. This leads to generic looking websites that makes your customers think you are lazy and have no ambition.

Themes are not unique, your business is

At the beginning of this article we discussed a website theme that was built for restaurants, which on the surface may sound ok. A restaurant would typically want to display information about their business, information about where they are located, a way of contacting the business and a page for a menu. Now you would think a theme should cover that and it will, but think of all the different types of restaurants there are. Would a single theme work for the following restaurants:

• Indian
• Italian
• Chinese
• Argentinian
• Pub
• Thai
• British

Do you think that one template is going to be applicable to all of the above different cuisines? I don’t think so.

Your customers wont find you

Unless your customers type in your business name then they wont find you. Customers who type in your business name are also existing customers and are not really the people that you want to be targeting anyway. Website themes and page builders are bad for SEO. They contain bloated code (code that is not needed) that slows down your website. They contain this code because the developer of the theme want’s to make the theme work for as many different businesses as possible, which is good for them and not for you.

Take a look at the following screen shots, one is a template and one is custom code. Both screenshots highlight code that does the same job, the custom code is 10 lines long, where as the bloated code is over 100. In terms of website performance this one example wont make much difference, but that is just for one image. Imagine the difference when an entire site is built up of this bloated code.

Bloated Code Example

Screen Shot 2016-08-11 at 11.52.22

Custom Code Example

custom website design

To further illustrate this point we did an experiment where we set up two websites, one using a theme, one custom built. Within a month the custom theme was ranking for its desired keywords, the theme however couldn’t be found anywhere. Check out the article (is your web development agency killing your business).

Cheap does not equal value

The main selling point for choosing a website design agency that offers web design services from £99 is that they are cheap. A website theme could be set up in an afternoon, and be put live within 2 days. You get a site that looks half decent, but you can tell it is a cookie cutter site. The biggest problem you are going to face however is that your site wont be search engine friendly, so that you wont be found by your potential customers. Earlier in the article we discussed that developers who use website templates and theme builders typically don’t know about SEO best practices and if your website doesn’t get traffic then it’s a complete waste of £99.

If you want value then you are going to need to invest money. A website that is search friendly, user friendly and mobile responsive is going to be one of your most valuable sales tools, working for your business 24/7 365 days a year. We have helped many small businesses get more from their online marketing efforts. We offer web design in wales and all around the globe, with clients in the UK, America and Australia.

If you want a website that generates business, check out our SEO marketing services

5 ways to attract customers to your small business

Being a small business owner is hard, I know I am one. Getting customers is even harder especially when starting out, but don’t fear the tips in this article should give you enough to think about to get going. So here are 5 ways to attract more customers to your small business.

1. Relationship building.

Everyone hates to be sold to, especially when the product being sold may not even help them. We have all had sales people contact us trying to sell us something that probably wont help our business in the slightest. As a web design agency I am constantly contacted by other developers over seas asking if I want a new website and of course the answer is no. These sales people are too lazy to even find out if I need the service so don’t be one of those people. Build a relationship and if your product or service can help then you can start selling, but until then don’t!

2. Understanding what makes you different.

Your USP or unique selling proposition is what makes you stand out from the crowd and shows your customers what you can do for them. Here at Weeare we make:

• Easy to use websites
Search engine optimised
• Mobile Responsive Websites

Now, are we the only web development agency to offer such a service in the whole world? Of course not, but locally can any other web development agency match our service? We don’t think so, and that is what makes us unique. Our service rivals that of huge agencies in the UK while being way more affordable.

3. Develop a customer profile.

You can’t service everyone. If you think you can then you won’t serve anyone. Think of who your ideal customer is. Are they:

• Male or female
• Young or old
• Single, married or divorced

By creating a customer profile you can then make a decision on how your marketing materials should be made so that it speaks specifically to them.

4. Reach out to your ideal customer.

Now that you have a customer profile think about where your ideal customer may hang out and try to reach them specifically.

5. Determine your marketing approach.

Some methods of marketing will work better than others depending on the business that you are in, but generally, the following are good ways to reach your potential customers:

• Create a search-friendly website
• Blog on your new website
• Email Marketing
• Pay Per Click Ads
• Direct Mail
Search engine optimisation

Conclusion

Some of the above tips may be common sense to many but sometimes we get so busy running a business that we don’t step back and look where the business is heading. The tips above when used correctly will help your business get more customers. If you need help attracting more business then check out our other blog articles, or if you would like to talk to us to see if there is something that we can help you with then contact us.

If your business needs more customers you may want to check out our latest post “SEO Agency In Cardiff

Long tail keyword research for small businesses

What are long-tail keywords and how can they help your business?

In this article, we will look at how long-tail keywords can help your business online.

Long-tail keywords are keywords that are often 3 or 4 keywords long that are very specific to the service that you are selling. They are very targeted and can be very profitable for your small business.

Long-tail keywords also target customers who are late in the buying process, this means that they are keywords that consumers use just before making a buying decision.

If your looking for seo services for your business check out search engine optimisation cardiff

The Buying process

1. Consumer becomes aware of a product.
2. Consumer looks for more information on the product.
3. Consumer looks at alternatives for the product.
4. Consumer makes a decision to buy.
5. Consumer buys the product.

In the above buying process, long-tail keywords target users around step 4. At step 4 the user has decided to purchase the product and will then start to search for more targeted keywords, I.E long tail.

The consumer may have started at step 1 with the search “Web Design Wales”, they would have looked at the results, compared them and then by step 4 their searches would have become more targeted and they would have begun searching for “Restaurant website design in Cardiff

If you compare the searches:

• Storage
Self Storage Newport

You can see that the long tail search is more specific, and that person making the search knows what they want and at this point, they’re ready to purchase it.

The Good News

Long-tail keywords have a higher commercial intent and they are also easier to rank for. This may throw you slightly but it’s true, an example of this can be seen below.

Let’s say you sell hiking tours up the Brecon Beacons. You may consider targeting a generic phrase like travel. This may seem logical to you as the type of person looking to go on a hiking tour maybe a tourist. However, if you tried going after the world travel you would come up against the following companies:

• The Guardian
• Travel Republic
• Telegraph
• Travel Supermarket

Looking at the above companies it’s clear to see that it would be very difficult to knock these companies off their positions without a massive budget and a lot of time.

The keyword travel probably gets hundreds of thousands of searches, but the keyword travel isn’t targeted to your audience. People searching for travel could be looking for travel insurance, plane tickets, summer holidays and a wide range of other services.

You may be thinking ok, travel isn’t that good but what about hiking tours? Once again even though your offering hiking tours you are going to go up against huge companies with huge budgets, the keyword also once again isn’t that targeted, because people searching for hiking tours in France aren’t going to be interested in hiking tours in Brecon.

Taking the long tail approach you would want highly specific keyword searches relating to your product so for example:

Brecon Beacon mountain hiking tours
• Beginner hiking tours in the Brecon Beacons
• Guided hiking tours Brecon Beacons

Now being a web developer I know nothing about hiking or if the Brecon Beacons has hiking tours so please forgive me, but I think I’ve made my point. By being more specific with your keywords you are going to face less competition while targeting consumers later in the buying process.

Long-tail conclusion

Long-tail keywords generally have fewer searches a month, so it is worth taking into consideration that targeting long-tail keywords will mean that your website will have less traffic than other websites targeting broader keyword searches. Personally, we like to target both broad keywords and long-tail searches, we believe this gives us the best of both worlds.

Whatever method you decide to use there is no substitute for keyword research, you will have to determine which keywords have enough traffic to be profitable for your business. For us, 1 customer could be all we need to be profitable for that month, whereas it could take 20 people for your business to be in the green for that month.

We believe that every business should be looking for long-tail keywords that work for their business. If you would like to discuss how long-tail SEO could help your business, then talk to us today.

google places for business

What is Google Places for business?

Google places is a free business listing provided by Google, you can think of it as an old school directory which is far more targeted to people searching for your services. Google places for business allows your business to be found by potential customers in your local area. It also allows past clients to be able to review your services, which over time will help build trust in your business.

Google places for business has been around for a while now and you will have seen the results shown in the search results page.  Think of a Google place as some free traffic.

Google local shows businesses close to you that you are searching for, for example, if I were to search for web design Merthyr, website design Pontypridd or SEO Cardiff then businesses in that local area relating to the searches would be shown.

Why is Google places important to your business?

Google places for business is important to your business because the people searching for your services locally are usually far into the buying process, this means that they are looking for your services with a high intent to buy.

Google places is excellent for both small local businesses and big corporations such as McDonalds. Google local shows your customers the nearest location to them. Other main advantages of Google local include:

• Google Places is placed at the top of the search engines, if your business shows here then your listing is one of the first businesses that potential customers will see. A Google Place listing is like SEO, but it’s instant.
• Google Places for business on a mobile phone will show the nearest location along with an option to be able to call the business, or get directions to your business location.
• Past reviews give your business credibility, instantly building trust with your potential clients.
• Local users looking for services that you offer are more than likely going to purchase your services rather than another business further away.
• Ranking at the top of the search engines in Google Places is going to give your business/website more exposure and website traffic.

What to consider when submitting your Google Places listing.

Google places were introduced to make finding local services quickly and easily, therefor you should not try to influence the results in any way. You should make sure that the information you submit is accurate to your business. Failure to do so could mean that no one finds your business or you could be penalised for trying to game the system.

Google Places for Business – Setting Up

Google Places takes hardly any time at all to set up, and If you want to set up a free Google listing for your business then check out the link below.

https://www.google.com/business/

If you need more traffic to your business you may want to check out our search engine optimisation cardiff service, if you just want to chat talk to our consultants today

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