2 examples – measuring and asking
Hello. Hope you had a good weekend.
I got to thinking after the blog I wrote on Wednesday after my training session with Sam. As you probably know, I try and tie back the takeaways (or lessons) in the articles I write, back to real life examples. And although I tried to do that with the blog on Wednesday, it came out fairly generic.
So I sat down today and gave some thought to providing some real life examples. And they were pretty easy to come up with.
1. Measure stuff. A client rang me on Friday. Ross owns a holiday resort and we recently (May 2004) revamped his web site.
Ross has just received the renewal for some advertising the resort has had going for the past couple of years.
For $400 a year, Ross’ resort received a couple of paragraphs, a small photo and a link to his own web site on the web site on an accommodation guide.
Ross called to ask my advice on whether he should renew or not.
The answer was easy enough. You see, when we revamped Ross’ web site we inserted a simple statistics program. The statistics program provides a whole range of information, including listing exactly where all web visitors originate from.
A quick check soon told us that the accommodation guide web site requesting the advertising renewal for another year for $400 had not provided a visitor to Ross’ web site in 4 months.
Not 1 visitor.
Which is a pretty fair indication that the $400 would be a wasted investment.
Measuring the key performance indicators of your business, whatever they may be, gives you the information to make decisions. The right decisions.
In Ross’ case a simple one-off $30 US investment in the statistics program saved him $400 per year.
2. Seek expert advice.
In the same conversation with Ross, he happened to mention that he’d received his domain name renewal invoice and wanted to check with me that he was doing the right thing.
I told him to throw the invoice in the bin and not to pay it.
Here in Australia we have a number of pretty unethical companies that simply direct mail the owners of domain names and say something like this:
” Your domain name requires renewal. If you do not renew your domain you could lose the use of your email and your web site. Renew now – $188.”
Now that’s all well and good. But what these companies neglect to tell people is that:
a) they’re not the registrar for the domain name,
b) the domain name might not be due for another year, and
c) domain name renewals should be $140 maximum for 2 years here in Australia.
These companies that direct mail domain name owners are simply hoping that the person is unaware of the above and renews the domain with them.
Many of course do and are left with a larger than expected bill, the hassle of having to change domain details and, usually, an inferior service.
If you’re not sure of something, ask an expert.
But the tricky bit is figuring out who to trust and who really is an expert. My advice to people is always the same – review the person’s past performance. Past performance is the best indicator of future performance.