Whether you’re blatantly throwing money away on bad ideas or losing potential revenue by failing to capitalize on good ones, here are some surefire ways to make the least out of your investment.
This next stupid idea is about… well, literally about being stupid. Now, don’t get all offended. Just pay attention and you won’t be in this category!
Stupid Idea 14: Say “I Don’t Know” A Lot
The shoulder shrug. The raised eyebrow. The puzzled look. If any of those follow a question about your website then somewhere along the line you’ve either already wasted your money or are bound to eventually.
Where is your domain registered (and when does it expire)? Where is your site hosted (and how much does it cost for what services)? How many people visited your site last month (and what percentage were new visitors)? What are you getting in your monthly SEO package (and what is the return on your investment)? How are people getting to your site (and what do they think of it)?
So many questions, so few answers.
If you can’t answer the simple ones listed above then your website is already a financial drain. There are different types of questions and the consequences of not knowing the answers will vary depending on the type. Some questions are logistical. Those may involve your domain or hosting. If you’ve read our previous admonishments to know where your domain is registered and understand your hosting platform, then you already know how not knowing these details can haunt you in the long run. It might cost you money to fix problems that could have been avoided or cost time and resources to untangle the answers when you need them.
Some questions concern the marketing of your site. Those involve visitor and customer behaviors, social marketing strategies or SEO programs. You don’t need to be an expert in everything – that’s why you hire developers, marketers and consultants – but you should have an understanding of what’s going on with your site and at the very least have access to a reliable source who is an expert and can educate you when you need to make important decisions about how, where and why to invest your marketing budget. Otherwise you’ll never know if you’re spending wisely or if your site is generating business. You could be losing revenue and not even know it. Or failing to capitalize on a good opportunity. Unless you ask questions and insist on answers you’re not in control of your marketing.
Every time you say “I don’t know” you watch another dollar fly out the window and plunge to its untimely death. We’ll end with one disclaimer: not knowing isn’t inherently bad. It’s willful ignorance that’s the real problem. It’s not knowing and then not caring enough or thinking it’s important enough to find out. You’ll never know everything but you should always be ready, willing and able to find the answers. The success of your web site depends on it.
Start asking yourself some hard questions about your web site and marketing… what’s your “I don’t know” question, and how can you find out the answer?
Read More In The “How To Waste Your Money” Series
- Stupid Idea 1: Hire someone to do it “cheap”
- Stupid Idea 2: Fabricate an FAQ section
- Stupid Idea 3: Just start building the site
- Stupid Idea 4: Worry about search optimization “later”
- Stupid Idea 5: Believe the person who tells you they can “get your site to be number one in Google”
- Stupid Idea 6: Don’t pay attention to your domain name, where it’s registered or when it expires
- Stupid Idea 7: Get the cheapest hosting you can find
- Stupid Idea 8: Write the copy yourself
- Stupid Idea 9: Don’t worry about whether your site or database is being backed up
- Stupid Idea 10: Insist on a news section or blog
- Stupid Idea 11: Brush off social marketing as something that’s too hard/not relevant for your business
- Stupid Idea 12: Be too busy to study your analytics and decide it doesn’t really matter anyway
- Stupid Idea 14: Say “I don’t know” a lot
- Stupid Idea 15: Launch the site, breathe a sigh of relief and cross it off your to-do list