How to turn Business Catalyst closing into major profits for your design business
While the initial transfer to another content management system might sound like a lot of work, it provides a great opportunity to grow your web design business. Especially with the Business Catalyst end-of-life announcement, many users are looking to a new CMS like WordPress.
We’ve looked into why WordPress makes the perfect solution for Business Catalyst users and how to streamline your processes with tons of free resources. But perhaps the biggest key for freelancers, agencies, and businesses moving off of Business Catalyst is convincing your clients that this transition will be easy for them and provide even more value than before!
As someone building websites for clients, this transition gives you the perfect opportunity to naturally assess your prices and how you package your services. Our number one recommendation is to move toward a recurring revenue model, where you can sell single-time projects (like this transition from Business Catalyst) and then recurring services (such as monthly WordPress maintenance). So, how do you get there?
Selling (and upselling) your clients
This is a huge opportunity to redesign your client sites and make a positive play for your business! It’s all about how you sell it. Let’s walk through how to sell your clients on WordPress and how to upsell your services moving forward.
“This is the perfect time to audit your site.”
Now that you’re moving your clients sites over to WordPress, this makes it a great time to audit the site and make the most of your time as well. If your client has a ton of content on their website, it may be time to start looking into what changes they want made, what content they no longer need, and what the plan of attack is from the design and development side.
It’s important to keep in mind that exporting posts and sites can be a slow but necessary process. Get to know exactly what your clients want (specific articles, pages, images, etc.), You might not need to move everything!
Whenever you start a new project like this or just need to create a new site in general, communication is key! Obviously you want to be able to set clear goals and minimize unnecessary work for yourself. After all, scope creep can be one of the biggest setbacks with new projects and moving websites to a new CMS.
“This change is only going to increase your site stability.”
When you work with a managed host, there are so many benefits to your client. Obviously every hosting company is a little different, but with a host like Flywheel, you get your own dedicated server. This means you don’t have to share resources with other sites, which greatly minimizes your chance of downtime. With shared servers, your space is divided, which can sometimes cause problems when you’re sharing space with other sites.
You also have the option to select where your site is hosted around the globe, which can drastically improve performance. Say you’re a developer in London, England, but most of your site traffic comes from Sydney, Australia. You can pick a server closer to Sydney so that your site visitors get the best (and fastest!) experience.
Most WordPress hosts also have a safe way to make site changes without directly working on the live site. Flywheel offers staging sites that allow you to make changes in a staging environment, then push the updates live when you’re ready to launch!
And while it’s not all attributed to servers and staging, there’s virtually no downtime on Flywheel (I’m talking 99.95% uptime), which can be a major selling point itself for most clients! All this allows you to give your client more peace of mind, which you can leverage when talking to them about the redesign.
“There’s no need to worry about the technical stuff.”
Most WordPress hosts offer various features to help with the technical nitty-gritty you may have offloaded with your previous CMS. And this is great because it frees up your time to keep doing your best work!
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Flywheel offers a suite of tools that will take tasks off your mind and off your plate. For example, Flywheel automatically performs nightly backups, so you can sleep soundly knowing there’s always someone looking out for your sites. And of course, you can also create more backups any time you want, which is ideal for any big changes or testing you may want to make.
Another thing you never need to worry about is caching! Flywheel handles that at the server-level, so there’s no need for you install caching plugins and no extra stress on your clients.
Yet another way to sell your client on this new WordPress site are the security benefits you can automatically package into your services. Flywheel offers free SSL certificates with every site, so your clients will have one less thing to worry about. And if (and that’s a BIG if) anything should ever happen to the site, you have a team of experts to help clean up any malware. All this adds up to save you, as the designer and developer, tons of time and money!
“This package offers everything you need.”
The easiest way to increase your rate in a way that isn’t too stressful for clients is to package up all the services under one price tag and outline everything that’s included. Sometimes it helps to see a larger number with a big list of all the awesome new features that are included. Explain that while the price is changing, your clients are getting so much more! Let’s break this down even more.
Let’s say you increase your prices by even fifteen dollars, but you outline on the bill that your clients are now getting nightly backups, almost 100% uptime, malware scanning, SSL, easy site changes, severs closer to their site visitors… Suddenly it doesn’t seem like such a big price increase, huh? One the other hand, if you go through and outline what each individual feature is going to cost them each and every month, it can seem a little overwhelming. It seems like such a small thing, but paying $45 in total is easier to grasp than $30 plus a $15 separate fee. By bundling your services, everything is included and your clients aren’t paying extra in their minds!
Reselling web hosting is a great option to offload some of the financial responsibility and workload on your plate. Download this free guide to learn how you can grow your business and set your own profit margins. It’s the art of reselling hosting!
Using this opportunity to switch content management systems is a great play for your bottom line. Have any other tips for growing your web design business? Let us know in the comments below!