Small businesses crash and burn every now and then. One of the reasons why they fail is their lack of a website. If your business doesn’t have a website, you’re shooting yourself in the foot. Learn why a website is integral to your brand and how it can make more people aware of your services. Join your host, Victoria Wieck, as she talks to Nathan Bynum on the importance of a website. Nathan is a website builder, and he creates websites for his clients in two hours! He is also the best-selling author of the book, Goal Setting: Habits to Achieve Your Goals and Succeed in the Life You Want. Learn why having a fancy website doesn’t always mean better. Learn to understand your audience because SEO means everything. Listen in today, so you can make your best website.
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How To Build A Website To Help Test Your Products With Nathan Bynum
I have the honor of introducing my youngest guest so far to date. He is very impressive. His name is Nathan Bynum. At the age of 24, he became a bestselling author. The book is titled Goal Setting: Habits to Achieve Your Goals. What we’re going to talk about is something that might be relevant to you and your business and something that we can all benefit from. Personally, a lot of my students have fallen into this trap of the websites. For a lot of you, the small business owners, the website thing is like a puzzle that we don’t understand all that well.
Let me give you stats on this too. Ninety percent of startups fail. That’s a staggering number. There was no excuse and no good reason for it. One of those things has to do with Nathan’s specialty, which is building a great website cost effectively and something that’s pretty flexible. You can track your ideal clients’ activities and attract them, as well as making it very friendly for them to shop with you, to get to know you, to fall in love with you. My husband always says to me that when it comes to internet SEO website or any kind of a tech person, the younger, the better. I found my youngest guy. His name is Nathan Bynum. Welcome to the show, Nathan.
Thanks for having me, Victoria. I’m excited to be here.
You look like a kid. For those of you who are reading, you might want to check us out on YouTube. He looks like one of these high school kids. There is this perception or maybe a misconception that Millennials are lazy as a generation than the Baby Boomers and everybody that can’t be for you. I find that not to be true. I’ve lately gone into a lot of Millennials who are super smart and very much a go-getter. They found their niche. In many ways, your generation corrupts with your cell phones on your hips probably by the time you were in middle school. There are some things that you do so much better than we do and one of those has to do with websites. Do you do believe that websites are necessary for every business?
After the whole pandemic thing and even before that, it’s critical to get your website out there. I don’t remember the exact numbers but I came across a stat. Somewhere over 50% of searches on Google are for local businesses. If you don’t have a website out there, then you’re going to be losing a lot of traffic.
I went out to do takeout Thai food. This Thai food place, we’ve been going there before the pandemic. It’s one of the big local hangouts out here. We wanted to have an easy night and my kids were over. We all wanted to eat different things. The first thing we did was we check out their website to see what the menu is, if they changed their hours and all that stuff. Lo and behold, they had their old menu. They were closing at 8:00 and we didn’t know. We called on the phone and ask them if they’re closing at 8:00. They said, “No, we’re up until 10:00.” We told them, “Your website says you’re open until 8:00.”
This is a simple example. This Thai restaurant was three miles down the road. The perception is people go to websites for special occasions but that’s not true. We Google all this stuff because it’s easier to do that than get on the phone. It’s the idea that the websites play a critical role, especially for small businesses. It doesn’t have to cost a fortune.
You can do it easily under a couple of hundred dollars to set it up.
Stop trying to attract everybody and focus on your ideal customer.
You help people build their websites in two hours, which is amazing. I can’t even navigate my own website sometimes in an hour or something. That’s a great service you do for small business people. I also want to ask you and maybe you can expand on this. I started my business in 1989. In ’89, if you wanted to have access to a computer, you have to go to a bank. They had those green screens with the green letters or you’d have to go to university. I went to UCLA. That’s very close to where I lived. I am an alumnus. I would go there. You have microfiche and all this stuff.
Now that’s not the case. Younger generation like you might think we do things backwards and we do a lot of times. There was this perception among older small business people that website is a website. They’re all the same. They’ve got a URL, an address and a contact. You have a menu of services. If you’re at hair salon, you have your hours and you got great looking pictures of whoever, especially small business women.
I’m not saying anything bad about women. People don’t like me talking about something but a lot of us women focus on the aesthetics like the colors, the main theme and the font. How does it make you feel? Those are all branding elements. I get that you do need that but I also know that I don’t know enough about this. All the words you choose to put in there has something to do with SEO, Search Engine Optimization. When you type in something like ice cream store or something, that pops up first because you get ranked. Explain a little bit to us about how that relates to website building.
One of the reasons that I tell people to go in this route and building it themselves is because whenever you type something into Google, you have a specific problem that you need to fill. In that case, you need ice cream. I would say that needing ice cream is a necessity. You type in what you’re looking for. What I see a lot of times is people go way too broad because they’re trying to attract everybody but whenever you start doing that, it starts not relating to anybody specifically and so they’re not going to feel those pain points and understand what you’re trying to do.
For this example, you could say something related but a little bit unrelated like, “Do you want a savory sweet?” If that was what popped up at the top of Google, in the tagline and all that, then you’re not going to be relating to the audience. How it relates to website building is you need to always be able to pivot, change, test and see what converts and what gets a higher bounce rate. A bounce rate is people clicking on your website and then clicking back because they didn’t find what they’re wanting.
It’s knowing the words that your audience uses, which I like to go in different Facebook groups or LinkedIn groups, become part of that community to provide value to people with questions but also to see what those questions are and what words they use specifically. That’s where your best website copy is going to come from. It’s going to come directly from people who are your ideal clients or people who are looking for that solution that you’re providing but using their words so that resonates with them.
Let’s go back to the ice cream example because we all love ice cream and it’s something we can relate to. Going back to your first part of the answer, which is if you were typing in ice cream very specifically, there’s going to be less people searching ice cream than sweets for example, because a lot of people are sweetaholic. You know if you’re a chocolate cake person or an ice cream person. When you say sweets, most likely that’s not going to get your search engine optimization to the max. You’re also saying that the customer who wants ice cream won’t type in sweets.
That makes complete sense. Understanding your target market, their pain points and the problems that your ideal target audience sees themselves having because they’ve got an ice cream attack and they wanted to have that. How you’re providing that solution that becomes a great copy material for your website, those copy materials then become better searched.
You hit on many of the pain points that small business owner has. A lot of times as a small business owner, if you’re selling ice cream, you’re thinking, “My rent is $14,000 a month. My employees are costing me $6,000 a month. I need to cover $10,000. How am I going to make money just selling ice cream?” The next thing they do is, “Maybe I’ll have the ice cream and the chocolate cake next to it because the sweet person is going to go do the other thing.” Then the next thing is, “Maybe I’ll do wedding cakes too.” That’s an extreme example but this is how we think we understand the ideal client.
You keep on expanding and then you lose your focus. That’s a common mistake that a lot of small business owners have or sometimes they start with the broad definition of their ideal client. The smaller the niche, the better off you’re going to be in terms of being able to build a website that’s targeted for that customer. When it comes to building a website, in your mind, what are the top three things that’s a key factor in generating traffic to you other than the one you explained about the ideal customer? Do fonts and all that stuff matter?
Consistency and fonts do matter because it’s a psychological thing that messes their minds when they see all these different fonts when people would try to get too fancy. As long as it’s just a more basic like pop-ins or something like that, then fonts don’t matter a whole lot. What matters are the words and the copy that you use and having trust.
You can find different sources of people who already have an audience that is particular to yours but they don’t have a competing service. They already have those audiences built up and that trust within. If you can find a way to provide value to their audience and to them, it’s like a show. I’m providing value for your readers and you providing that content.
The reason that is so important is that they already have that relationship with you. They understand that you’re a giver. They understand that, “This person that I trust already trusts you.” Even before they get to the website, they have that built up. It’s not going to matter as much what all the fancy little things that you do are going to do on that website.
Another thing I would say is super critical, especially that Google is releasing the vitals like the three different things that they’re going to be looking for in websites. One of those is how fast your website loads. That’s another reason that people get way too fancy with it and so that slows it down dramatically. The sacrifice that they make with making their website quick enough is not worth the fanciness of their widgets. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve looked up and searched for something, clicked on a website and it’s taking forever. I click away and go to the next one. It might have been a better website.
I agree with you on the speed because I don’t have time at anything that loads. My rule is four seconds. If it still got the little wheel thing, I move on because life is too short. Nothing I search is a life-threatening thing. I move on to the next guy who makes it a little bit easier for me to do. How do you feel about pop-ups on the website? Almost 50% of the companies I visited says, “Sign up for this thing and you get 15% off or some offer.” Do you think that’s necessary? Do they work?
There’s a more tactful way to do it. I don’t have pop-ups on my website. I never have. The reason that I do that is that I want to have that relationship with people that I’m going to be working with first before asking them for something. I have different places on the website that I offer different free things for their email, their name and everything but I don’t let that be the first thing.
A fancy website isn’t worth it if it won’t even load fast enough.
I don’t even have it in the top fold of my website, which a lot of people tell you to have it in the top fold but I don’t think that’s enough time to provide that value for other people. I have a video on the top of my page and then you have to scroll down to get to anything that you sign up for. For one, subscribers cost the company’s money because you can only send X number of emails and you can only have X number of subscribers before you have to start paying more. Why would you want people here just hopping on to get something, unless they know that they’re going to be getting that value?
Two, it can come off as spammy. A lot of times, I’ve clicked away from that. I’m not knocking anybody who does those things because we all have our different approaches. I like to look at it and I like other people to look at it more of a long-term relationship with those people that you’re going to be working with. I’m not a big proponent of the pop-ups.
I love what Nathan was saying about these two points. They both go hand-in-hand. One is about working with other people who don’t compete with you. What he’s saying is to collaborate with people that have a similar interest. For example, my daughter has a website and she specializes in Millennial bridal custom-made jewelry. She does high-end fine quality Millennials who are eco-conscious people.
She does bridal jewelry for Millennial customers who are looking to make the world better. She could collaborate with wedding dress designers, florists or wedding photographers because they don’t compete. They’re all going to meet in the same place. That would be a great example of how you can work with other people who’ve built up a trust level with their customers. You can, in return, do the same thing for them. This collaboration thing is great.
When it comes to pop-ups, what Nathan was saying was gain their trust and respect first before you offer them a free discount on something because you’re going to end up attracting people who only value that coupon. They’re going to leave you for another coupon. They’ll never come back and it will cost you money. I like those lessons there as well. My next question was on the all the signups too. Do you do think that having a newsletter or a blog is still relevant on your website or no?
I think so. Having a newsletter is another way to provide value to people because I know what my customers, my email subscribers, all of them are looking for. I do a newsletter a couple of times a month, providing them things that I’ve learned or resources that have benefited me. Finding all the different ways that you can find to add that value is critical. That’s why I have those signups, email address and all those things to provide that value. I have a rule set up for myself that 90% of the emails that I send are straight up good content value and not pitching anything. I do have that 10% where I’m like, “This is what I offer if you want it. If not, then jump to the next email and there’ll be some more content.”
What you’re advocating and your rules that you have set for yourself are how we’re used to old business before digital age. Before the internet, the digital and the cell phones, we would never go up to somebody and go, “My name is Victoria. You’re Nathan? Buy this.” We wouldn’t do that way. We would ask you, “How are you? How is your family?”
It’s building that relationship and some sort of a trust. Only then that coupon or anything will matter. I would assume the consistency of the newsletter is important. I’ve always had this itchy question about this and I still haven’t done it for this one reason. It’s because I’m not sure so I didn’t do it. When in doubt, don’t do it. That’s my role.
Holiday times, I do fine jewelry when I’m not podcasting. My customers are very loyal. Jewelry is one of those categories that if you don’t have an emotional connection with your customer, you don’t sell it. We’re selling things like wedding rings, graduations, anniversaries, birthdays. I’ve always wanted to share what my family’s Christmas great recipe is that I still treasure and I only eat it once a year. Do you think that those add value at all or should I stay strictly business?
That would be a wonderful idea because it’s the relationship with people. You’re not just a name or a business. You’re building that relationship with them. Seeing that side of you, the family part, those connections that they also have in their lives and being able to relate to that, that builds that rapport. That would make them trust you more and value you more because you’re opening up to them and you’re sharing things from your family and personal things with them. That’s an awesome idea.
One of the emails that I send out each month is a personal story where I’ve learned lessons from and then how to apply those lessons to other people’s businesses. Just having that has a huge effect on building that relationship with them. You don’t walk up to somebody and do that but once you have been sending those emails, they’re obviously getting your emails because they’re on the list and so they know who you are. They can listen to your wonderful podcast. They can find you in all these different places. They do know you. Sharing those stories is natural.
I’ve always wondered if that is way too much me kind of thing. I have a lot of respect for my customers and their time. I have two questions. Number one, you’re a huge advocate of building a website that’s flexible enough. You are testing your product lines, your service, your pricing and all that. We’re constantly testing. My whole model for running a business is test it then once you figure out what’s working or what customers like most about it, you tweak it, you build it, then you accelerate, scale this up and then you do it over and over.
In order for you to do that, you would need to build 3 or 4 different websites in that whole process. You’re saying that number one, you can build on that website while you’re testing in less than 2 hours or up to 2 hours. I have a feeling that you probably could build a website in less than two hours but for most of us, we’re not that tech savvy. Is that practical? Do you have a reason to believe that? Remember, you have to take your hat off of yourself with tech savvy people.
One, you could build multiple websites. I can explain how it all works together but the theme that I use has different modules on it to where it’s the same website. I word things differently and 50% of the people see one thing, 50% of people see another thing. That way, I don’t have to build multiple websites to test different things.
Two, I’m always testing things on my website. The top does not have the menu on it. You have to scroll all the way down to the bottom. I have a video on the top and I’m seeing if that helps build that relationship more. I’m not saying that you have to build multiple websites to do it. You could do it that way but I find it easier to test different stats, look at them and do different AB testing on the websites to figure it out that way.
I do believe it is possible because I’ve had some people do it. I’ll put this stipulation on it. I’m not talking about writing all the copy and everything. I’m talking about getting the pages set up, getting them look how you want them like the aesthetics and all of that. Connecting that with the host and the domain name, getting it completely live and set up in two hours but then you’ll have to do the writing and all of that afterwards. I don’t know how long that would take. I can explain to you in a metaphor to explain how all that works.
Building a website is like building a house. The house is the website, and the land is the hosting service.
This is how I explain it to people whenever they first asked me how I do build a website. It’s like a puzzle. You don’t know how all the pieces go together until you know what the puzzle looks like. Say that you’re building a house. In order to have the house, you obviously have to have land. If the website is the house, in this case, it’d be technically a content management system. That’s how your website is able to be drag and drop and you’re not having to do any coding or anything. That house is sitting on the land and the land is the hosting service. The house is like the website on the internet to where people can get to it but at this point, they still can’t get to it because there’s not an address.
That’s where the domain name comes in or the web address. That’s your street address. How people type it in to get to there but not a lot of people are going to get there without a road. The roads are any kind of social media like Instagram, Facebook, podcasts or LinkedIn. Those are the roads that bring people to the house. They’re able to find that website because of the content management system.
You have the house but you don’t have it set up and you don’t even have different rooms in it. The different rooms here represent your homepage, services page, all the pages that you specifically need. Those are built with the theme. I always recommend Divi because it’s a one-time purchase. It also has the ability in which you literally click a button and you’re able to see what it looks like on a tablet or a phone.
You can see any type of phone. It even has them listed out. You’re able to change it based on how you want it to look on there. Divi also has the AB testing to where you can write one thing and write another thing and see what converts better. You have your house, the land and the hosting service. You have all the roads to get there. You have your address, your room set up and all the interior design. That’s how it all works together.
Next time you come on this show or anyone else’s show, you should have a little white board, draw the little house and all that. I love that. With everything you’ve said, I can completely relate to them because I am a huge proponent of building a relationship, gaining their trust and their respect. I also believe in getting your leads, your customers with generosity more than just take. We all have something to give and that’s precious.
I like your whole philosophy of driving and gaining traffic and how you can help people build a website if they want to. I’m not going to build my website because I’ve already built it a couple of times. It’s working pretty well but for those of you who are too busy to do it, the lessons that Nathan shared with us is very valuable, even when you’re hiring people. You know enough to know the type of things that need to go there like pop-ups.
I shop at Pottery Barn a lot. They have their pop-up within the first ten seconds and it annoys me. I’m like, “I’m already a customer. I’m not going to get the 15% anyway. I’m not going to sign up for the email.” They don’t even know that I’m an old customer for them.
I’ve spent probably upwards of $100,000 at Pottery Barn. I’ve done several rooms, houses and they still don’t know who I am because they’re asking me to sign up for the emails. That annoys me. I wrote to them. I said, “I should be a VIP customer for you.” Stores that somebody had told me about, I try to go and then the first thing that comes up is a pop-up. To me, I’ll go to a place where it’s 20 seconds or 30 seconds. I’ve had time to click on more than one but with the first ten seconds, to me I found that very offensive.
I’ve never done that on my own. That answered a very big question on that as well. It’s the bigger reason why the pop-ups don’t work. Thank you so much for coming on. That was a great primer on SEO, on everything else, as well as identifying your target market, how people Google search your problems and the potential solutions as well. People who want to learn more about this, where would they go, Nathan?
To complement this, I made a PDF to where it could walk people step-by-step, how to set it up with pictures and everything with the hosting and all that. If they want to, they can go to ReachFuelPotential.com/2HourWebsite.
For those of you, who already had a business with no website, read this episode. Go through the checklist of all the things that Nathan had shown. I know there are quite a few of you out there that are hobbyist inventors who aspired to be an entrepreneur or maybe you have a side gig. I know that 30% of you have some side hustle because I did a little survey on you. Many of you start your businesses, you’re getting traction and you’re like, “I have a business. I should convert this because I’ve got eight people that want to learn more about this.”
I have a very good friend who’s gotten a lot of her old clothes that she was giving away and she thought, “These are so dated.” Nothing about these clothes were great but she loved these buttons. The buttons are old schooled and stuff. She’s had a business selling these old vintage buttons. It took her about 4, 5, 6 months until people figured out how to use them. She was teaching people. She went to mostly senior citizen places. It’s such an heirloom thing for the next generation. Her business is blooming and she’s like, “How do I build a website?”
You should think about doing your website before your business comes on because when that business happens, the last thing you want to do is worry about the technicalities of building a website at that point. You want to get that momentum after you start turning your businesses. With this friend of mine, her business is literally on fire. She’s getting small stores. She’s found great ways to do postcards and all that stuff.
She’s in 14 or 15 different stores. All of these are happening and she doesn’t have a website yet. When she finally found a website, she went for the cheapest guy like a $500 website, who’s going to teach you how to get this done on Shopify. It’s too late. That’s why I wanted to have Nathan here because you want to be proactive. If your business is not on fire yet and now that you have a little bit of time, give those two hours and your business a real chance at surviving. Ninety percent failure rate is not necessary and not justifiable if you follow those simple little steps.
One last thing I want to say about Nathan is he literally is a kid. My kids are 29 and 27 years old. You’re super bright and super polite. Your parents are going to be very proud of you. Thank you so much for coming by, being such a class act, a gentleman, knowledgeable and for educating us. For those of you who haven’t subscribed to the show, please subscribe to this.
If you have kids Nathan’s age, share it with them because there is a future for the Millennial generation. A lot of people in that generation believed that their American dream is moving farther and farther away from them, which is not true. Until next time. Stay healthy and happy. Remember, happiness is your choice. Thank you.
About Nathan Bynum
Traveling the world meeting successful entrepreneurs has given Nathan the insights and skills needed to become one of the youngest goal achievers you’ll ever meet. At 25 he has already become a best-selling author, a certified goal success coach, and is now teaching his audience of entrepreneurs how to systematically achieve their business goals by honing in on a niche at the intersection of their passions and profits, showing them how to create websites in less than 2 hours from scratch, without touching a single line of code, and attracting their ideal clients.