Offer More Services
Another way to generate more income is to offer additional goods or services. When you are focused on making money, it can be easy to get pulled in multiple directions. Instead of scampering off after a host of different money-making ideas and spreading yourself thin, try to keep the main thing the main thing. In other words, focus on your core business and look for additional income opportunities there.
For many graphic design businesses, website design is the core business[md]the real rainmaker. The price of website design can get into the tens of thousands of dollars with the right client. Even on smaller website projects, you can increase your revenues if you look for needs that your clients have. Remember your client’s core business is widgets; it’s not writing website copy that’s optimized for search engines, or taking professional-looking photographs, or analyzing web statistics. All that’s in the realm of your core business. Your client realizes that you are much better equipped to handle these things than he is. If you just offer the additional website services, your client is likely to avail himself of them. Your smart clients know they can make more money by focusing on their core business than they can by trying to do everything for themselves in house.
Here are just a few of the additional services you could offer your clients relating to your core business of website design:
- Content Development: This service could include an in-depth study of the client to develop material, writing the website content, editing the client-provided content, developing new page content on an ongoing basis to keep the website fresh and interesting, and writing monthly articles for the client’s blog.
- Google Analytics and Metrics: You could provide training for clients on the interpretation and effective use of Google Analytics, but most clients don’t have time to do this for themselves. You could provide site traffic monitoring and a monthly statistical report that interprets the statistical analysis in a way the client can understand. Additionally, you could provide recommendations for ways to improve the client’s site based on the statistical information, and then, of course, you could implement those improvements.
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO): This service could include structural assessment of a site and recommended changes, keyword research, site update to include top keywords, revision of content so that it is SEO effective as well as reader-friendly, search engine and directory submissions, inbound linking assessment, and inbound link strategy recommendations. To offer SEO services, you need to stay current on the latest algorithms the search engines use to rank sites.
- Photography: With the right equipment and the talent, you or someone on your staff could take the photos for your clients’ websites. If tweaking photos is what you’re good at, you could offer a service that prepares photos for the web, including cropping, retouching, enhancing, creating effects, and saving the photographs with the proper resolution.
- Flash Animation: Most clients love Flash animations, but they don’t necessarily request them. If you created a sample website that uses lots of animated effects to show your clients, it would certainly help you sell more of these high-dollar items.
Examine each of your other core businesses and see if you can think of additional related services. For example, if you design printed materials, you could offer printing services. You don’t have to go out and buy a printing press. Just establish a sales relationship with a reputable local printer (or an online printer). Clients don’t really know how to talk to printers any way so if you are designing the piece and walking it through the print process to completion, you have eliminated one more headache for the client and generated additional income for yourself.