When it comes to website design and functionality it's critical to know that you don't know what you don't know. It's no longer acceptable to plead ignorance in business when it comes to your website because if you do you are offering yourself up as a lamb for sacrifice on the alter of 'those who know'.
Five things will result from this:
1.You will pay far more than you need to for your website ? as much as ten times more!
2.You will have a website that looks great and functions today, but has to be completely redesigned as your company grows and/or as technology changes. See above.
3.You will be dependent on your web designer/host to update your site with the result that you will always lag behind the times and usually at an hourly rate that will deter you pressing for continual updates. See #1
4.Your company's Internet ranking will always be haphazard and leave you wondering why some competitor with half your magic is higher in a Google search than you are.
5.You will accept that your business is your focus and leave the website to the experts with a sigh thinking that once you get your sales up you will hire the big guns to get a site like the one who ranks high in your industry. See #1.
Let's undo some of the mystique that leaves so many small as well as large businesses susceptible to being taken advantage of by those who hire themselves out as experts or vulnerable to the vagaries of hackers. Neither of these are costs you want to afford. How do I know?
Not very many years ago I invested over $30,000 in an absolutely gorgeous website. It was with a web design company with whom I had done business for many years in my executive capacity as VP of Sales and Marketing. I was then starting off on my own career and knew the Internet was the future. It wasn't until I was getting at the thin end of my capital that I started asking why the site just wasn't working. When I didn't the get the answers that made any sense ? they were in no language I knew ? I took my first course in Internet Marketing.
On morning one of a three day intensive workshop with the room full of people, laptops at the ready, we were instucted in how to get into the source code of our site. Well, for the next three days, I just took notes because I discovered three things: I had no authorization to access my own website; I didn't own my own domain, and the site was written in a code that was arcane and specialized to a point of non function. I was at the mercy of despots who charged $150.00/hour. And, I wasn't the only one.