[thelist] Advice on Getting That First Client

{ schaapy } list01 at theparagon.org
Fri May 10 23:12:01 CDT 2002

> Not every business needs a website, even though they seem to think they
> What in the world gain could a company like this have with a website?

Very true - but the only way you'll ever really know is by talking with
them. Just because you set up a meeting with them doesn't mean you're trying
to scam them into getting a website. Your job is to educate the client. By
setting up a time to sit down and discuss their options (in full) is what
helps not only the client but helps you (the developer) know if they need a

> I asked her a few questions, and it quickly became apparent that she
> an online brochure.  To be honest, an online brochure was not going to
> her small company get more revenue each month, and I explained that to
> I told her the money would be better spent on yellow page advertisement,
> printed flyers, and anything else that can actually drive local traffic to
> her shop.

Alot of small businesses/persons only want a brochure site. Sometimes it
helps them where as most times it is pointless. I (as most of us here) would
rather not see another pointless website out on the www.

The problem is - alot of these small businesses/persons don't know anything
BUT a brochure site. That's where your experience as a web developer comes
in. You explain to them what you feel (as it looks as though you did) but
you also need to explain to them what their site COULD be like.

What are some options? ---- For example (depending on how much they have
budgeted) they could have their schedule online. Allowing people to sign up
for appointments and after their appointment they could load in each persons
haircut style. So next time that same person comes in they can just look it
up and say - "Joshua - You gonna have the usual today?".

That right there is great customer service and is something that would make
me come back over and over. Not to mention the people I would refer to this

That's just one small example of things you could tell them. They might not
be able to afford it that but at least they have a goal to shoot for. Maybe
it's just what they were looking for but didn't know how to accomplish it -
now they have a way of making it happen.

By letting them know all this they might keep their focus on a worth while
purpose and when some less intelligent web developer (that uses FrontPage)
comes to talk with them - they'll say no and have a reason to.

> I have strong feelings against acting like a used car salesman, I guess.

Good - so do I :-)

Aaron Schaap

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