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    Anchorage Alaska's Crucible Designs
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    DIY New Year

    01/13/2015

    Since the first of the year I've been fielding requests following a suspicious pattern.

    "We built our own website using the  XYZ builder and we need to add a tool that our customers expect."

    I'm a little weary of pointing out that SquareSpace, Wordpress and Wix are all excellent tools to get your business online: but none of them will turn a small business owner into a web developer without a major learning curve.

    Some of this week's requests include:

    • "Can you tell me how to add an IDX feed to my SquareSpace website?"

    • "Can you walk me through adding a Reservations & Booking form to my VistaPrint website? We'll need a calendar and a payment system."

    • "What will it take to get my VRBO listing to the top of a Google Search?"

    Wellllll - the answers are simply:

    • No

    • No

    • Time and money.

    Running a one-woman web studio it's not surprising that people think I can do everything. If it is about an online presence, I do do everything. That doesn't mean you can.

    Getting it Done

    I'm not against do-it-yourself websites. They can be wonderful ways to get online. Templates aren't always bad! Just make sure you know what you are getting before you commit to anything.

    Step One - Figure out what your website is supposed to do.

    Step Two - Who is it supposed to do it for?

    Step three - Can the website building tool achieve Step One and Step Two?

    Finally - consider hiring someone to help you with the first two steps. Planning ahead is always more cost effective than guessing. Once you've invested in a failed product, you'll find you haven't saved a dime.

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