Charlotte Web Design
If you live and work in Charlotte, you already know that it’s a great place to do business. The city is expanding, stepping out from under the shadows of its larger neighbors yet retaining its own identity and old-fashioned southern charm. With semi-affordable housing, a mild southern climate and a major airport with global links it’s no wonder that people from all over the world are deciding to settle here. This cultural melting pot is proving to be fertile ground for fresh ideas and new ventures, which seem to be springing up daily. Perhaps your business is one of them – a thrusting young start-up, eager to carve out a piece of territory in a brave new world. Or maybe you’re an old-established firm, watching your city change around you.
Either way, in this day and age, no business can afford to be blasé about its online presence. From high finance to every day services like motor maintenance or drain cleaning, when your potential customers realize that they need help, the first place they are likely to turn is the internet. The question you need to ask yourself is, “Will they find you or your competitor?”. Of course, it’s not always a matter of competition. If you’ve invented an entirely new product fills a genuine gap in the market, then the public may not even be looking for you. You need to find a way to put the product in front of their eyes and make them realize that they need it. Your website needs to be easily found by anyone looking for it but it also needs to take advantage of modern web marketing techniques and appear in front of those who never even knew that they had a need.
So, if you’re going to get the website that perfectly meets your needs, then you will have to choose a web design company with care. There are certainly plenty to choose from. Like most major cities, Charlotte’s needs are well served by a growing community of tech experts, web designers and online marketing gurus. So, with the whole Charlotte web design community to choose from, how do you pick the one that’s right for you? You need a designer who will take the time to understand your business and produce a website that’s tailored to your requirements – not just make a few adjustments to an existing template. Your website should be a unique showcase for your brand, rather than something that looks suspiciously similar to a dozen other sites. You also need a web designer who’s well-versed in the latest online marketing techniques and new search engine optimization tweaks.
To be really successful, a website must be regularly updated with new content. This not only provides something of interest to regular users but also ensures that search engines continue to regard the site as active and relevant. How often you should update your website will depend largely on what sort of industry you’re in. Obviously if you’re in the business of any sort of news, then you’ll be updating the site multiple times each day but, even if your product isn’t the news itself but you happen to be in a rapidly changing sector such as finance, or technology or even fashion, you should be prepared to add content whenever there is something new to be said. Many businesses add a blog or news page their sites. Larger businesses can either handle this in-house or outsource the task of updating content. For smaller organizations without the time or resources, it’s still worth trying to add something as often as possible, even if it’s only every couple of weeks. Obviously, the content needs to be worth reading. You can’t simply fill pages with lists of key words – the search engines got wise to that trick many years ago and have ways of telling the difference between meaningful content and spam. If you really find it difficult to come up with new content and there’s no one you can ask for help (and no spare cash in the budget to pay a content writer), then you should consider asking customers for reviews and testimonials or, if your business has links to the local community, try adding a bit of local news to your site.
Whether you update your content yourself or pass that task to someone else, you’ll need to know that your web designer can be relied upon to maintain the site and help with any problems as soon as they arise. For this reason and many others, it’s a good idea to deal with a local web designer, who will be working the same hours as you and will be easy to communicate with. Particularly if you’re making frequent updates to your website, you’ll want the peace of mind that comes from knowing your web designer is easily available and accountable for this vital part of your business. If it’s bright and early in the morning for you but bedtime for your web designer, you may have a long and anxious wait to deal with any emergencies. If you choose a web designer based in Charlotte, a serious issue can be dealt with face to face, if necessary and day to day contact can be maintained.
If you’re a corporate giant, with customers in every corner of the globe, then local probably doesn’t mean much to you. For most businesses, however, no matter how far your online presence takes you, the local market matters to you and also to your staff. After all, you and your team don’t just work locally – this is also your home and the local population is made up of your neighbors, not just your customers. So, if you want to make sure that your web designer understands your brand and your customer base, who better than a local designer who literally knows where you’re coming from? A local web designer will have the same local knowledge and the same mental map of the area and its people. If you need your site to reflect your heritage, both in the look and feel of your site, and the language it uses and the places it refers to, a local designer will know just what you mean. If they’re not already familiar with your business, they’re definitely familiar with your area and the market in which you operate. And, of course, that works both ways – with a local web designer, when you check their references you’ll know whether or not they come from real clients. You can even contact their previous customers to ask about their experiences. It sounds like an old gangster comedy threat but ‘I know where you live’ has a place in modern business. In an age where so many of our online dealings are largely anonymous, having the comfort of knowing who you’re dealing with and actually being able to meet them face to face, if necessary, has a value that shouldn’t be ignored. A web design company that markets itself to the local area has to have confidence in the quality of its work. After all, if you’re likely to bump into your web designer in the queue for your morning coffee, they’re not going to want an awkward moment while you both remember how they let you down.
Hiring a local web designer is also a sound long-term decision. Life online changes and, realistically, your website will need to change, too. In the very early years of the ‘net, when web designers made simple, clunky sites and their customers generally had no idea what, if anything they had done, the client/web designer relationship was short, if not sweet. Money changed hands, a page went up on geocities and both parties separated, with a degree of confusion and embarrassment on either side. Clients expected the world to appear at their door, the largely self-taught and very amateur web designers generally couldn’t even begin to understand their own limitations and, with the benefit of hindsight, nobody had had a good time. These days, thanks heavens, both sides are a little more savvy. Web designers will (or should) expect their clients to notice how well the site is performing and the good ones will maintain a point of contact with their clients, to make sure that any changes in the online marketplace can be discussed and dealt with in a way that’s acceptable to both parties. A good web designer also knows that, if their local clients aren’t happy, then word-of-mouth will make sure that they have to look further afield for business in future.
But is that all there is to the matter? After all, there’s ‘local’ to a geographical area but you could also consider that there’s a sense in which you might want to stay ‘local’ to your subject area. It can be argued that, just as there are web designers who understand your home city, so there are web designers who understand your business sector. Shouldn’t you choose a web designer who can give you a website specially designed for cake-bakers, or real estate agents, or piano teachers, or whatever field you happen to be in? Well, that sounds good, as far as it goes but you might just end up with a site that’s identical to every other cake-baker’s website in the western hemisphere. The lesson, really, is shop around. You might get a website that has the right graphics and terminology for your business sector but, when you want to make changes or add content, it’s very possible that you’ll have already reached the limits of what your web designer can provide. Sector-specific website templates may look pretty and work well for a start-up, but they’re not designed for growing businesses.
Another benefit of using a local web designer that should not be ignored is the fact that they’re also a part of your local business environment. You may well bump into them at your local business networking event and they probably know some of the people you interact with commercially – or would like to. Some of their clients may be the businesses that you would like as clients. Doing business locally means expanding your local networks and opening doors for communication with other potential business partners. Plus, aside from all the local networking opportunities that you may gain access to, by doing business with local firms, you’ll be giving a boost to your local economy, and that’s good for the wider population of Charlotte.
Leapinbound.com is the ideal local web design business to partner with. We’re a small business, with strong ties to Charlotte and we care about our local area. We do business upfront, with a straight forward attitude to cost, results and expectations. We work with our clients to make sure that we understand their needs and try our hardest to create a website that meets them, rather than simply selling the same old thing, repackaged. We can help with every aspect of building, maintaining and marketing your website. We also help you to establish yourself on social media. Not only that but, as a small business, we naturally understand the needs of small businesses. We won’t take on more work than we can handle, or go after a big trophy client and neglect our other customers. We also won’t take on competing clients and risk a conflict of interest. We believe that the best business model is an ethical one and we build that belief into every part of our service.
If you’re looking for a website designer in Charlotte, then we’d love to hear from you. Whoever you choose, we hope the information above is of use. Good luck in your future business.