Occasionally, we will have a client leave us due to the age-old fallacy that “the grass is always greener”. Sometimes I feel that we are to blame because we have not educated our clients on the value of the services they receive, but oftentimes, it is just pure knee-jerk on the part of the client.
Here’s an example:
Less than a year ago, we rescued a website for a client. These situations happen a little more often than one would assume, but it does offer us a good opportunity to be the hero and save the day. Generally, a client comes to us with a nightmare entanglement with another web developer or company, we fix it, and transfer the responsibility of the website to our care. The client is relieved and sees the value in dealing with us. We all carry on happily ever after.
In this case, the manager of the company had soured a relationship with a small-time web developer who left them hanging in a dispute over money and deliverables for making a website. There was web authoring software installed on the server that didn’t work and we were called into troubleshoot, get it working and finish the project. All this was done and we assumed responsibility for keeping the website operational and keeping the software up-to-date. At the time, the added expense of our service was viewed as excellent value due to the fact that they would never have to go through this nightmare again. We would be the reliable and dependable web company that they needed.
Now, a year later, the owner does a brief review of the company expenses and decides that web maintenance can be had more cheaply somewhere else. Of course, the manager that we dealt with tried to argue against returning to a nightmare situation, but the owner would have none of it. Save a couple of bucks and put your manager back in the soup!
The net result of this knee-jerk decision goes deeper still: we were a client of theirs. In the future, we won’t be patronizing this client and we won’t be referring them business. For the sake of a few dollars, this owner has thrown away dependability, reliability and income.
Business owners: Before you go looking to cut corners, think about what the real costs are.