We Don’t Want Our Website Background To Be Gray
I had just finished giving a talk on effective web design at a CEO mastermind group in Denver, and was packing up my laptop and materials.
One of the business owners who had attended the talk approached me, complimented me on the presentation, and began talking about his company's website and online marketing.
"We've set aside a good deal of money for our online marketing budget this year, we're really excited. We have a long list of important improvements and upgrades we want to have made. Maybe your company could help us?"
"Well, I'm not sure at this point. Tell me more," I replied. "What's one of the most important website improvements you're looking to have made this year?"
"We definitely need to change the background color throughout our site. It's gray, and that needs to GO!!"
I looked up, surprised. "Changing the background color of your site is one of the most important improvements you need to make?"
"Why?" I asked. I was suddenly very, very curious.
"It's just so boring. It drives me crazy. It needs to be brightened up so our site is more... exciting."
"Has anyone else ever commented that they don't like the gray? Or that the site is boring?"
"Oh yeah, three of the guys in the front office."
"Have any customers ever complained that you have a boring site with a boring background color? Any potential customers ever commented on it?"
"Do you think you've lost business because of the gray?"
"What if someone like me suggested that the gray is actually an appropriate color that blends well with the rest of your site's design?"
"I'm not sure..."
"Tell me then, do you think that if you changed the background color of your website—which, because of how your site is built, would actually require a good deal of work—do you think that changing that color would generate more leads or revenue for your business?"
"I guess not?"
"Hmmm. Okay. So, forgive me for being dense here... but as I understand it, the gray in your website isn't losing you money, no one outside of a few employees in your front office have ever commented on it, you don't believe that changing the color would have a positive impact on your business, yet you rank this as one of the top website or online marketing investments you need to make this year? I'm so sorry; I feel like I'm missing something?"
"Well, I just really, REALLY don't like the gray..."
"But," I softly interjected, "Is your company's website for you? Is it for your employees? Or is it for your customers and potential customers?"
"Well, it's for our customers."
"Do you know what they think about it? Have you ever asked or done a bit of research there?"
"No, we haven't."
We were both quiet for a moment as he stood there in thought.
"Well, shoot. I guess I need to start thinking about things a little differently here when it comes to our website. You've made a good point and I shouldn't get all wrapped up in my personal preferences and thinking about them before I think about the big picture. Otherwise I'm going to go spending our money making things look the way I like, but I'm not really going to be helping my company move forward at all."
I smiled. He understood.
Hope you do, too.