By Nancy King, Godaddy
Do you ever wonder what happens in fairy tales AFTER the unlikely hero sweeps the awkward heroine off her feet? How do they make their lives together actually work when one of them is a mermaid and the other makes his living as a fisherman? Do they go into the family business, or do they start a brand-new business of their own? In my sequel, they branch out on their own and start an online business. I’d recommend they hire a webmaster. Why? Maybe it’s because:
- Even their fairy godmother can’t find them online
- They think CSS stands for Cinderella Sells Shoes
- When their website went down, they called 9-1-1
But what can an amazing webmaster do for you? You’re definitely more on the ball than our fairy tale heroes, but working with someone who specializes in websites can make an enormous difference to your site, and therefore your business. A webmaster can:
- Keep your site looking current – nobody likes navigating a site built in 1997.
- Promote your site and your business – by using the correct tools to get you on the Internet’s Main Street.
- Drive traffic – by knowing how to create the right “maps,” and by finding and identifying roadblocks along the way.
- Protect you – they can keep on eye on your site and alert you if they see any unsavory characters hanging around.
Finding the right webmaster is an important decision to make, and one that is not to be made lightly. It is far too easy to hire someone without asking the right questions and to end up having them disappear in a puff of smoke like a fairy tale villain. In “Hiring a Website Designer? Consider these basics,” GoDaddy’s Andrea Rowland recommends that small business owners ask a series of starter questions that address site-related issues ranging from billing to naming rights. She says:
“It’s important for you to have the legal rights to your domain name, so if you decide to change designers down the road, you won’t have to worry about who’s got control of your online name.”
It is very easy to see the reasoning behind a webmaster’s proposal that they take care of everything – it’s one less thing to worry about. But your domain is your intellectual property and you need to treat it the same as your registered business name. Nobody else owns your business name, and they shouldn’t own your domain name.
You’ve purchased your website address, you know what questions to ask, but where do you go to find a reliable webmaster? Most of don’t us have a magic wand, but we do have the Internet. There are a handful of great marketplaces for creative types like website designers. In addition to asking people you know for referrals, start there. You’ll have an opportunity to not only contact serious designers, but you’ll also get to see their portfolios online before you make a final decision.
Every story needs a happy ending, and nothing is better than a beautiful site with a great Web presence!
About the Author:
As a member of GoDaddy’s Professional Development team, Nancy King trains people to help other people become successful small business owners. She works with computers every day and is never more than inches from an electronic device capable of accessing the Internet. The world’s largest domain name registrar and Web hosting provider, GoDaddy gives small business owners the tools to name their idea, build a beautiful online presence, attract customers and manage their business. To get more tips for your small business—including articles, videos and webinars—check out the GoDaddy Training Hub. Connect with Nancy on Google+.