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Old Dec 2, 2012, 01:31 PM   #1
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Q: How To Convince People/Companies That They Need A Revised Website?

hi guys.

i got some youth groups and church groups (and small companies) that they obviously need a new website.

i mean sites still with blinking gifs, banners and the sites just don't look modern anymore.

obviously updating the website would cost money and how could one convince them, that it is needed? how could one convince them, that the investment is worth it?

how could i convince them that they need to revamp the site?

eg. the church group doesn't have that much money. would it be a good thing to ask the designer to create the groundwork (say the start page) and just change sections of the site, when the group is able to pay the designer(again)?

thanks for any info.
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Old Dec 2, 2012, 01:51 PM   #2
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Honestly, with most churches you're fighting a losing battle. You generally have two types, those that are super media savvy and already have folks doing their media and design, and those that have no clue and are stuck in 1996.

The latter group just isn't going to spend the money, they'll eventually update when they have someone within their organization who'll do it for free/cheap.

With small businesses you have a bit more of a chance but not much. Try showing them before and after examples and try to talk numbers, i.e. this company did X dollars more in sales or had X number more inquiries after updating their website and branding.
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Old Dec 3, 2012, 04:15 PM   #3
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The question you should be asking yourself (and them) is why they need a new website. No matter how bad their site may look, if they believe that their website is accomplishing their goals then why bother changing it?

There is your argument for why they should update their site. While updating the design of a site may make it look "prettier" and modern, if you're not adding any value it's a waste to them. It's like putting lipstick on a pig.
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Old Dec 3, 2012, 04:20 PM   #4
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Location: Canada, eh?
In the end it depends on what the purpose of the site is, and what your relationship is with them. Are you the "door-to-door salesman" trying to sell them your own services? Or are you a member of the church concerned that your ministry isn't being as effective as it should be? There's a difference in how your opinions will be received, though if you are the former, it will help you if you can explain things in terms familiar to the latter.

For example, if it's a church youth group website, what is the purpose of the site? Is it to attact kids to go to the youth group? Kids are notoriously finicky about tech, and you could probably just gather a few kids' opinions (bonus points if those kids belong to said youth group). They'll be quick to point out if a site is lame.

Is it to inform adults? Should the site offer up-to-date calendars ("what's happening on December 7, 2012")? Photos from recent events? Does it do the job it's supposed to do? Is it convenient to use for the target audience? Those are the types of questions you want them to be asking themselves, not just "you shouldn't be using animated gifs".

You could also show some examples of the competition. Look up other church or youth group websites and compare them. Get them to ask, if I was new and looking for a group, does one site compel me more than another? How easy is it to find out how, where, when?

BUT, like the other posters have said, with churches and other charity groups, money is extremely limited and you're going to have a hard time getting them to spend money unless it is clear to them that there will be a strong payoff. I speak from experience, as the webmaster of a church type charitable organization. I do it because I'm free labour. I'm not the best web designer, but I can get a basic job done. I would love to have a fancy Flash site done by someone with way more design talent, but I just can't justify the cost. I suspect virtually every other charity group is the same way. Either they've got a relationship with a paid provider already, or they do it in-house because it's free.
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Old Dec 4, 2012, 02:24 PM   #5
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When you figure this out, write a book and you will make millions.

I create a quick mockup of their 'next' site. Find the business owner (probably the hardest part) show them what they currently have and what they could have. I give them a glossy 4x6 screen shot with the price on it and a business card and thank them for their time.

works about 1 in 20
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Old Dec 5, 2012, 02:37 AM   #6
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off-topic: i am missing the plus symbol when i want to comment on replies...

on-topic: as fig has stated, showing numbers and improvements could help. the first part is more difficult, especially when one doesn't have the old numbers. number of website visits etc.

that is quite often the problem, some group has a website, which is a 1998-2001 edition, they say "it works". our phone number is there, our address is there, our future events are there. sure. but the typography, the color, the design itself is out-dated. how can you convince a non-savvy person, that "it is not enough". well, a mock-up site might help...

great insight notjustjay.

@960design 1 in 20 sounds bad don't you want to think your strategy?

edit: hey! the multi-quote button is now visible!
"Real men FTP/SSH their files around anyway." -- generik

Last edited by redAPPLE; Dec 5, 2012 at 02:38 AM. Reason: added text.
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Old Dec 5, 2012, 09:58 AM   #7
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1 in 20 is not bad. Most companies would kill for a 5% success rate from any direct marketing campaign!
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