Timeless Cliche – You Get What You Pay For

- September 8, 2010

I was speaking with a new client recently about the challenges they face in driving qualified visitors to their website.  When we reviewed their target keywords, they didn’t have a single webpage indexed within the top 50 listings on Google or Yahoo/Bing.  As with many companies in today’s economy, they were forced to make some tough decisions on where to allocate financial resources when developing their marketing plan and choosing a web developer.  Eighteen months later, they still have no presence in the search engines organically and sales are not ramping up as they had hoped. 

Their situation reminds me of a classic quote from the movie Armageddon, when Steve Buscemi (who plays the character Rockhound), says “You know we’re sitting on four million pounds of fuel, one nuclear weapon and a thing that has 270,000 moving parts built by the lowest bidder. Makes you feel good, doesn’t it?”  While I hesitate to equate a website with a rocket ship carrying a nuclear weapon, I am sure there are business owners who feel they are managing a company with 270,000 moving parts.  For e-commerce companies, where their website is the main source of revenue, cutting corners or choosing the cheaper option is a blueprint for failure.  I always felt the popular cliché, “you get what you pay for” should be amended to “you get what you pay for…and later you pay more to get it right”.

Putting your most important asset into the hands of the lowest bidder is not a sound strategy, and the final result rarely ends with you actually saving money.  The amount of time and money needed to fix a poorly designed website can easily cost more than if you chose the highest bidder from the beginning.  I’m not advocating choosing the most expensive option as a way to guarantee results.  In addition, I understand all companies have to make sound financial decisions in order to run their business.  Proper due diligence is the best course of action before choosing to partner with any company regardless of the service or product they offer.  However, remember the 270,000 “moving parts” of your business and the importance of your website’s success before blindly choosing a cheap alternative for the sake of saving a few dollars.

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