As in all industries driven by disruptive technology, the services offered by traditional web development businesses have changed and will continue to change because market needs and business internet usage shifts and alters in the coming years.
As far as market entry goes, it’s pretty easy to enter the web development market; all you need is a computer, internet access, and time. There is plenty of demand for cheap work to get you started and fair rates for good work if you can do it.
However, as a result, many web development agencies are finding themselves facing the same challenge - how do you grow your business in such a competitive market?
1. Selling additional services are key to generating ongoing revenue - but the sales cycle is long and unpredictable.
One of the most effective ways to increase revenue is to get more money from existing customers. Offering additional services such as SEO, web hosting, and social media will play a big role in the success of web development agencies today but one of the biggest challenges businesses face when it comes to actually selling is overcoming the lengthy and unpredictable sales cycle.
When discussing the cross-sell of SEO services, 58% said it takes between 1 to 3 months to get signed off from clients.
2. Lack of budget for investment into ongoing website maintenance.
A recent report on The State of Web Development Services in 2016 found that SEO was one of the most commonly offered additional services. Yet participants cited lack of budget as being the most common cause of an SEO project coming to an end.
Couple this with issues regarding client education and it is not difficult to make a guess as to what services are going to get cut first if the budget gets tight.
Best solution for this is to look for low cost, scalable and efficient SEO solutions, automate what you can, and consider outsourcing.
3. Understanding your customers changing needs.
Your business is always changing, and so are your customers.
It has been highlighted that while the majority of clients engage with a web developer to get a new website, many reach out because they ultimately want to drive more traffic to their website, improve conversion rate, and participate in social media.
Don’t assume that you know what your customers want.
Gather data and insight by speaking to customers as it will also be useful for your business. What related products and services are your customers buying? What are they not purchasing?
Ask them about their plans for the future, find out where their biggest challenges will be in delivering their plans, look for opportunities to develop new services to help them, and adjust to their goals.
Afterwards, you can help them find a solution to their problems.
4. Adding extra value
Do your clients know about the extra and ongoing value you can offer them? How many of your clients have gotten you to build the website only to then find other providers?
If you think that your customers are your best market to target with additional services then you’re not alone. 50% of web development businesses in this report have confessed that they were planning business and revenue by offering existing customers new services.
Consider what extra value can you offer to existing customers and how you can deliver more for them.
5. Remaining competitive
Competition is fierce and the competition with cheaper overseas resource is only growing.
So in order to survive, you need to think about offering innovative solutions. Manual, resource heavy services that are difficult to scale will not help your business in the long run. Instead, contemplate on the usage of technology and web platforms where you can align the services you offer to the lifecycle of your customers.