Can You Do Me A Favor …

Recently I went to a local printer to have some things printed for my business. The owner was actually helping and asking questions along the way. When we finished he asked “I have a website, I paid a few thousand for it, it has a lot of products on it, but only gets a few people a month coming to it. Can you do me a favor and take a look at it and tell me what wrong” …

Now a lot of people see this sort of thing as an imposition on their time. Personally I see it as free unscheduled sales call. I’m nearly through “The Art of the Start” by Guy Kawasaki, and firmly believe in what Guy calls “being a mensch“. We go to his office I look at his site. It’s a boiler plate site from a company who sells sites to printers. Lots of duplicate content that’s on hundreds of other websites. While the shopping cart has an extensive line of thousands of products, they are trapped behind incredibly uncrawlable URL’s. Lastly the one thing SEO’s really should thank designers for being so inept about, it has no title’s at all.

So I run through some basic SEO 101 stuff with him, and tell him about the problems he has with his website. He’s not happy about it, but he does get it. He then tells me he’s the vice president of a local business group with over 40 members. A lot of the other members are having the same problems he’s having, websites with no traffic. He then asks would I like to come down and give a presentation, pass out some business cards and do some networking.

If you’re interested in client gigs this is an opportunity you can’t pass up. Yes these are small businesses with limited budgets, but if you do your job you can build some nice supplemental income, and get to work on something that’s probably not as polluted as the affiliate playgrounds you are used to playing in. You may also make some connections, and open some doors down the road.

I’ve had a few people email me here asking for my opinion on something, or to take look at something and offer some advice. I can’t do it for everyone, but I do try. If I know who you are “real or virtually”, you want me to “show you how to fish” rather than “asking for my fish”, and you are generally polite, you are much more likely to get a response. Not everyone returns the favor (and that’s not why you should do them in the first place), but most people will try to help you out if they can or you ask, so don’t be afraid to ask Can You Do Me a Favor

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