As a business owner, you have a never-ending stream of decisions to make. Should you offer more classes or try a new type of class? Is it time to buy new equipment? Should you hire another trainer or coach? Or, should you start selling retail merchandise in your gym? The list goes on and on, but one question we hear frequently is regarding whether or not you should outsource website design and management.
There are many factors to consider when making that decision. To help you decide which is best for you and your business, we’ll share some things we’ve learned while working with our website customers.
Outsourcing Saves Time
Building and managing a website takes a significant amount of time. You can do it, but you’ll have to figure many things out by trial and error. To start, you need a hosting provider and all your website copy. Then, you need to select a template and arrange your images, colors, fonts and text throughout all the pages on your website. Next, you need to do all the back-end search engine optimization work, including sharing an XML sitemap with Google, doing a robot.txt file setup and all your content optimization.
Once you build your website, you’ll have to manage the maintenance and posting of new content. We’ve heard that when you manage a site yourself, it’s easy to continually push the necessary updates to tomorrow or the next day. Which in turn can become next week or next month.
But when you outsource the website design, all of that, except selecting your template, is done for you. Even the regular updates are done for you, so you know they will be completed promptly. This convenience will save you an extraordinary amount of time that you can use working with your members or doing other tasks that only you can do to add value to your business.
Additionally, when you consider what your time costs on an hourly basis, you’ll see that having someone else design and manage your website is much more cost effective than spending the time to do it yourself.
Outsourcing Gives You the Best Product
In addition to saving a significant amount of time, you also get a much better quality product when you outsource the design and management to professionals. We know this because quite a few of our website customers come to us with sites built on popular platforms and they are not well-designed.
Zen Planner Website Team Lead, Carrie Jesse, says that she often sees problems on websites that are not professionally built. The most common include:
- The color schemes aren’t good for readability.
- There is too much information in one place or not enough information in others.
- Calls to action are hard to find or not included.
- The content is formatted with HUGE hard-to-read blocks of text.
- The focus is more on the bells and whistles than on converting leads.
Also, many of the existing websites that come to us have broken links or issues with security, which is one of the easiest ways to jeopardize placement in Google search rankings. Or, there are weird code snippets visible in the header that makes the site look like it’s broken. We mentioned above that a lot of designing and managing your own website comes with trial and error, and it’s easy to see how these errors happen. When you’re designing a website without experience or an understanding of what drives and converts leads, you end up with a subpar product.
Knowing Who to Trust When Outsourcing
We know gym owners should outsource website design and its management. But it’s not quite as easy as that. There are plenty of low-cost freelance job sites where you can find a website designer who seems to offer an extremely affordable service. That’s great, and the outcome could be better than a DIY website. However, there are many factors to consider when building a lead driving gym website. You don’t want a website that would work equally well for a restaurant, dry cleaner, book store or dentist. You need a website that’s designed to capture leads for your gym. Anything less than that amounts to letting leads slip through the cracks.
Learn more about why your gym needs a modern, optimized website.
Zen Planner is a management and billing software for boutique fitness businesses.
We help gym, school, and studio owners streamline their day-to-day tasks so they can get back to doing what they love — helping their members. Enjoy all the features you need to manage your fitness business, including robust reporting dashboards, automated payment processing, skills and belt tracking, attendance history, and online retail.