9 Reasons Not to Pitch a New Website

We’re all hoping for that big website order – you know, the one that will secure your cash flow for the next six months. But is pitching a brand new site the wisest move for your business, and the right advice for clients?

Winning business in today’s market is increasingly challenging – client budgets have taken a hit with no obvious return to past glories imminent. Competition is fierce among agencies while price has become a much more sensitive issue. It’s not easy out there for agencies or potential clients – so rather than fight over a hard sell that will keep you up all night sweating, take the pressure off both of you and forget the website.

Next time you get an enquiry with an unrealistic budget to create a brand new site, think of the following ten reasons not to pitch – and instead win a focused lead-generation campaign with greater margins and less risk.

Lower development costs

Rather than getting caught up in the buzz of a fresh design project for your team to get stuck in to, take a step back and evaluate why the client has approached you. Are they looking for an all-singing, all dancing new site, or is it their real priority and end goal to increase enquiries and revenue? Many web build projects come with unrealistic budgets, but a single-page lead-generation campaign requires significantly fewer hours to implement. The development costs are far less, meaning you can pitch a solution within the client’s price expectations.

Lower promotion costs

Discussing how a website will be marketed and the associated costs can be a delicate subject, but it is one that needs to be tackled at the start of the project, so bite the bullet and be sure both parties have clear expectations. This will also help give you an edge over competing agencies because promoting a single offering or product on one page requires far less budget than promoting multiple pages – a pleasant (and potentially contract-securing) surprise for the client during the pitch stages.

More gain, minus the pain

A lower cost reduces risk for a client: you have turned their mammoth challenge of promoting a new website into a smaller more achievable goal; one which will deliver instant results.

Deliver results ASAP

New websites take time to convert and require more ongoing optimisation and improvements. A single page is an easier nut to crack and, from my own experiences, generates instant results with far less long term optimisation of ads, creative and copy.

Targeted approach

When you stop and think, it makes a lot of sense to focus your efforts on one page and concentrate on delivering fast, impressive results – making it far easier to generate a lower than agreed cost-per-sale. This increased revenue within a short time period will have the new client eating out of your hands.

Think small, win big

New website projects can so easily go the wrong way and leave you out of pocket. A single-page lead-generation campaign means less invoicing, but the room for error is greatly reduced, resulting in a much higher margin. So boost your own marketing, generate more enquiries and discover how a more focussed approach will make life easier (and more profitable!) for you – and increase sales for your clients.

Time frames

Clients always have unrealistic go-live dates which can pile on the stress and reduce capacity to fulfil other project commitments. With a lead-generation campaign instead of a major web build, you can probably slot the project around other work and still meet the deadline – something that competing agencies pitching a new website probably won’t be able to achieve.

Dare to be different

Stand out from the crowd and get your proposal noticed. While your competitors present full website documents 20+ pages long, your focused offering will hit all the right emotional triggers and be a breath of fresh air. It is likely that a marketing manager may have their eyes on a new website, but an MD or FD will relate to a more focused way of spending the budget. When was the last time you heard a company director saying ‘no’ to increased profits, fast results and shorter turnaround times?

Build trust

Recommending a client to do something different is always a bold move, especially at the start of a relationship. But your up-front honesty should be well received and will help lay the foundations for a good relationship. And once your campaign is delivering results for a lower cost-per-sale, the door for new business will open just a little bit wider.

When to redesign

…Of course there will be times when a redesign is unavoidable – if the existing website is really bad and obviously underperforming, focus on reducing their requirements to within budget. Or instead suggest a series of lead generation campaigns. Don’t forget the client wants enquiries and sales – deliver and they won’t mind how you do it.

Featured image: Business partners discussion on Shutterstock

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