how to spot a cowboy

How to spot a (website) cowboy

I’m Aaron Taylor, CEO and Co-founder of Six Two and I think the web design industry is broken. I’m going to give you 5 ways you can spot a web design cowboy to help you to make better decisions when you’re buying a website.

Going on to Google and looking for web designers in your town seems like a logical thing to do but there is a high chance that you will end up talking to a cowboy due to the amount of amateurs in the industry.

These 5 tips I will talk you through will help you figure out whether they are a cowboy up front before you go too far down the line where money, time and effort is involved.

  1. If they won’t meet you face to face for a meeting and refuse to talk to you through any other medium except email.
  2. If they take forever to get back to your emails or won’t answer your phone calls.
  3. If they don’t ask enough questions in order to find out about your story, your business and its needs, the problems your website will solve and what you’re hoping the potential outcome will be.
  4. If they don’t ask about your customers and how you want/need to serve their needs.
  5. If they are talking about visuals too early – if they talk about fonts and colours in your first meeting then they will not solve the problems at hand instead they will just make something pretty which has no use to your business.

To hear about these 5 tips in more detail, watch the video below.

Transcript

00:00
WEB DESIGN IS BROKEN
00:04
Thought I was gonna wear the sunglasses all the way through
00:06
didn’t you. No.
00:08
Today I am going to talk about cowboys and I’m gonna give you
00:13
five ways to spot a cowboy when you are trying to buy a website
00:19
So you’ve probably gone on google already you’ve typed in web design Shropshire
00:25
You’ve found two maybe three people that you think oh these guys are kind of cool
00:30
This is the bit which so many people miss out on because well, hey the
00:37
information just isn’t out there there, is a very high chance because of the
00:41
number of amateurs in my industry that you will end up talking to a cowboy
00:47
these five tips are gonna help you to figure that out up front before you end
00:52
up going way too far down the line and then wasting time money effort and
00:57
getting stressed out because a project falls apart. Okay so let’s kick off:
01:02
Number One: if you cannot get a face-to-face meeting you are dealing
01:09
with a cowboy especially if they’re local to you. I can understand if you’re
01:14
looking for a web designer in Kent but you live in the highlands, yeah a
01:19
face-to-face meeting and it’s gonna be kind of hard. If they refuse to talk to
01:23
you on any other medium than email that chances are you are dealing with a
01:30
cowboy there. How do you expect to to take your business on this digital
01:35
journey with someone who should be a consultant for you who should be there
01:40
trying to understand your wants, your needs your problems that you’re trying to
01:44
solve. If they won’t even talk to you face to face can it straight away
01:49
Number Two: if they take forever to get back to you and I’m not talking like you
01:56
know a couple of days I’m talking like weeks go by and your emails go
02:01
unanswered your phone calls just never picked up they seem to vanish for long
02:09
inexplicable periods of time. If they take forever to
02:13
get back to you the chances are that their organizational skills are not
02:18
going to be up to scratch for what you need it’s it’s really gonna be a thing
02:22
that derails it completely and means that the whole project just takes five,
02:29
ten times longer than it should do or because they couldn’t get their butts
02:32
into gear and respond to an email Number Three: they don’t ask enough questions
02:38
This is a tricky one especially if you’re doing this for the first time
02:42
because how many questions is enough questions? If they I don’t know give you
02:48
a form to fill out with five or ten questions things like “what’s your domain
02:53
name”, “please upload your logo” generic things like that, and they don’t follow
02:57
it up with some more in-depth analysis; if you don’t feel that you’ve had the
03:01
opportunity to tell your story to share your vision your goals for what you want
03:08
your website to achieve then they probably haven’t asked enough questions.
03:12
The whole point of of a website is to help you overcome a challenge, it’s to
03:18
give you greater capabilities within your business and so the web designer,
03:23
the person that you’re talking to should be trying to understand your challenge
03:28
as clearly and as fully as they possibly can. Because then that’s going to give
03:34
them the information to go away and creatively solve it with a website
03:39
Number Four: they don’t ask about your customers. Now this sounds kind of
03:47
obvious but you would be surprised at how many people in my industry missed
03:53
the point of your business which is to serve your customers. So if they’re not
03:59
asking about your customers, if they’re not asking about what challenges they’re
04:04
trying to overcome, how you make things better for them how you serve their
04:07
needs; if they’re not asking about that then they are gonna completely miss the
04:12
point and it’s going to end up being a bit of a vanity piece for you, and you’re
04:17
gonna turn around in six months time and go “well hey this isn’t actually doing
04:21
anything that we hoped it kind of would” Cowboys don’t care about your customers;
04:25
they only care about a quick buck. Number Five: They’re
04:29
talking about visuals too early. I know seeing the mock-up for the first time
04:36
seeing what your website is actually gonna look like that’s the exciting bit;
04:40
that’s the bit that it’s tangible that’s when it becomes real. But how it looks is
04:46
always a slave to how it works. If you jump into how it looks too soon then you
04:53
end up with something pretty that’s ultimately useless, and frankly just a
04:59
waste of your time and money – if you want something pretty go and buy a picture –
05:03
you’re trying to create capabilities for your business, you’re trying to serve
05:06
your customers in a better way. If you find yourself talking to a web designer
05:11
and the first thing they want to talk about a colors fonts and visuals: run a
05:16
mile! They’re a cowboy. They might be good at designing things they are not gonna
05:23
be the ones to help you solve your business problem. So that is five ways
05:28
that you can spot a cowboy and run a mile real early … I guess there’s a sixth
05:33
way as well, if I’m honest, which is they’re wearing a Stetson and they turn
05:39
up to the meeting on horseback…
05:44
I’d definitely love to see that … I’m Aaron Taylor helping you to have better
05:49
conversations and make better decisions when you’re buying a website.
05:55
Till next time

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