Why Changing How I Eat Relates Directly to Your Next Website
For a number of reasons (healing from surgeries, sports performance, food sensitivities, reducing inflammation, etc.), I've been continually working to fine-tune my diet for the past several years.
I'm not writing today to debate whether eating Vegan is better than eating Paleo, whether nightshade veggies are more harmful than they are healthy, or whether or not endurance athletes can perform better if they commit to ketogenic diets.
Instead, I'm writing to share how my experience in trying to understand what's best for me in the world of food so closely mirrors what businesses experience when trying to determine what's best for them in the world of developing smart, effective websites.
Good for you, bad for you
Not long after I began looking into how I could fine-tune how I ate several years ago, I learned that conducting my own online research was massively overwhelming and confusing.
Because nearly every approach to eating—as well as nearly every individual food—had just as many people insisting how healthy it was as it did people insisting how critical it was to avoid it.
A few of the endless examples I came across...
- They're great for you! - They're packed with phytonutrients, antioxidants and flavonoids.
- They're bad for you! - Even if you're investing in pricey organic strawberries, a single sample is typically packed with tons of pesticides.
- It's great for you! - It provides a substantial amount of vitamins and minerals we need to function, including B1, B3, B12, phosphorous, riboflavin, zinc, and niacin.
- It's bad for you! - Bacon has a TON of harmful fats.
- They're great for you! - They help overcome depression, aid digestion, and act as prebiotics that stimulate the growth of friendly bacteria in your bowel.
- They're bad for you! - Actually, when it comes to staying fuller and not crashing later, they're not much better than cookies or French fries.
- It's great for you! - It's loaded with saturated fat that has a beneficial effect on heart disease risk factors.
- It's bad for you! - It's loaded saturated fat that's heart-damaging, along with a ton of sugar and calories.
Red Bell Peppers
- They're great for you! - They're a superfood packed with over 30 different members of the carotenoid nutrient family, including alpha-carotene, beta-carotene, lycopene, and lutein.
- They're bad for you! - Eat more than a very small amount and the solanine in them is likely to increase pain, inflammation, and stiffness.
- It's great for you! - It contains the rare form of selenium called selenoneine that binds with mercury compounds to lower the risk of mercury poisoning.
- It's bad for you! - It rots your brain and causes cognitive impairment because it accumulates so much mercury.
- They're great for you! - They raise your good cholesterol and are rich in unique antioxidants.
- They're bad for you! - They're pro-inflammatory and can cause cardiovascular problems. Even worse, consuming an egg a day may shorten your life.
- It's great for you! - It reduces the risk of diabetes, makes you live longer, and contains pentamer, which disrupts cancer's ability to spread.
- It's bad for you! - In fact, it's a toxin. Plus it has a very high oxalate content, which is directly related to kidney stones.
How in the world could you expect to make sense of the millions of conflicting food recommendations out there without working with someone far more knowledgeable to guide you through the noise? How could you possibly know whether what you've chosen to believe is downright harmful to you in the long run?
Pick a food. Any food.
My guess is that nearly anything you pick will have ardent supporters and detractors, each with a surplus of reasons to back up their claims.
For anyone conducting online research about how they can make smart food choices: Good luck.
How in the world does this relate to websites?
Go ahead. Spend 10 minutes trying to research a great web agency. Visit the websites, read the promises, pay attention to the claims and proof—and just try to walk away with a confident decision about who you'd want to work with.
Spend time researching what goes into building an effective, revenue-generating website and you'll find hundreds of different "critical" techniques and "required" components that MUST be included in your website—or else it couldn't possibly help you achieve your online goals. What you may also find is the following:
Claims and opinions presented as facts.
A single case study presented as unquestionable truth.
Sweeping recommendations for all businesses regardless of their goals, resources and challenges.
Results massaged into overly-impressive reasons to believe.
And so on.
Back to food for a minute: How I dealt with the conflicting information
In the past six months, by changing the foods I consume and when I consume them, I've been able to make incredible strides in many areas of my life, including my overall health and sports performance.
How did I do this with the overwhelming amount of conflicting information online? How did I figure out what to avoid and what to eat more of?
I ignored it all.
Instead, I did three things:
- I found two expert consultants that specialized in guiding their clients toward the (very) specific results I was looking to achieve.
- I trusted these consultants to map out unique, completely customized Action Plans for me based on my strengths, resources, challenges, preferences, and goals.
- I allowed myself to be challenged. My previously strong-held beliefs about what was best for me were repeatedly tested and challenged—and I opened myself up to trying new things I'd never tried before, including foods I'd previously thought were hands-down bad for me.
Have I achieved perfection? Nope.
Have I reached every single one of my goals and figured everything out? Nope.
Am I continually testing new things, sticking with the options that have a positive impact on me, and moving on from the options that don't? You bet.
It's all about progress, not perfection. It's all about testing, continual improvement, working with people who are way smarter than me in this field, committing to my big picture vision of success, and taking an active role in my health.
And surprise, surprise. Guess what?
Everything I just said in that last section? It's just as relevant in the world of websites and online marketing.
Businesses that work with expert web design, development and marketing consultants who can map out 100% custom Action Plans and strategies prior to moving forward are the ones who find quicker, less stressful paths to success.
Businesses that partner with experts who demand time and energy up front to ask hard questions, look at "what-ifs?", conduct audits, challenge beliefs, consider alternatives, are the businesses that are given custom Action Plans that allow them to thrive. They're the businesses that experience synergy through collaboration—collaboration that marries what they know about their companies and goals with what web consultants know about how to make things happen and how to think for both the short and long term.
Is it possible to achieve big results on your own? Probably.
Are you increasing your chances of massive success by working with a web consultancy that's devoted their entire existence to deeply understanding how to guide businesses through the maze of website and online marketing options and hurdles? Very much so.
I wish I would have reached out to my consultants sooner. If you're serious about improving the results of your website and are considering hopping directly into a web project without first engaging true web consultants, I sincerely hope it won't take you too much time or money before you reach the same realization.