33: Helping The Client

A significant amount of my time is spent in educating, coaching, or hand-holding the client and gleaning web content from their “on-hand resources.” Building the site is the easy part. My focus is producing forms and shortcuts to help clients quickly assemble material (reduce the learning curve.)

Of a 6-week website production period, about 2 weeks is spent waiting on the client –30%! Room for improvement.  Trimming decision-making is the first focus. Ultraspeed limitations help. Now my focus is helping the client make decisions on what’s important and what isn’t. I can produce custom sites for very little money, very fast –as long as the client stays within my self-imposed limitations. If they step out of bounds, I have to say, “Sorry. Keep shopping.”

The client frequently DOESN’T know what’s “good value.” Or “How good is good enough?” This requires some educating and they then buy a web product based on “perceived value.” Not how many hours or pages are spent. This is the secret of making money –not fluffing things up. Tell the truth instead.

I also screen my clients. 50% don’t qualify. I don’t do stores (well? within limits –say a dozen PayPal items), I don’t do government or state or municipalities or churches or schools or non-profits. Those are monster sites and loaded with committee feature creep. Long-term slow turnaround projects.