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Efficient Website Management Pushes Profits Higher

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Efficient website management requires quick responses to problems, initiatives, changes in competition, and new products.

The website support ticket went to the vendor on Nov. 10. The answer came back on Nov. 17.

The ticket had a simple question, but the vendor somehow was so inefficient with customer service that it took an entire week to reply.

Efficient website management requires quick responses to problems, initiatives, changes in competition, new products, etc.

If a simple question requires one full week for an answer, both that site and that vendor have big problems with efficiency.

Efficiency is Central to Technology

Technology is all about efficiency, isn’t it? Because of increasing efficiency, computers run faster, fewer labor hours are needed, less money is spent on people and equipment.

In the online environment, this concept has meant better browsers, faster downloads, more security (and more attacks), improving content management systems, more sophisticated advertising and many more continual improvements.

If in doubt, just think about the online environment back in the early 1990s when the Mosaic browser made its debut.

3 Principles of Efficient Site Management

The classic definition of resources in economics is labor, capital and material. For a small online business, those three concepts also can be called time, investment and services or equipment.

1) Analyze processes to save time.

Some efficient companies will map every process, put each one on a single piece of paper and then take every step apart to find ways of doing the process faster.

A small online business may not have the time to do the same thing, but it certainly can look at the bigger time hogs and question why they take so long.

Simply prioritizing tasks based on importance and urgency can result in saving time when it leads to an orderly approach to work. Chaos saps both time and energy.

Does the business have regular meetings or conference calls? Develop an agenda, plan the shortest possible time commitment and keep the conversation moving through the agenda.

2) Analyze investments to save money.

A business thrives on an investment of paid-in capital at the beginning and on profits during the course of its life. That money either can be taken back out of the business or invested back into it.

Publishers with profitable Web sites often may do a bit of both. The more aggressive, growth-oriented publishers put all of their profit back into the business to maximize growth. The conservative ones take out most of it because they don’t want, need or expect much more growth.

The decision about what to do with profits should require an analysis of how the money could be wisely spent on the business. Has advertising produced more leads, transactions or visitors? Then the investment of profit might go there. Does the site need more content? Does it need more disk space? Does it need more staff?

Each possibility can be pursued or rejected based on need and opportunity.

3) Analyze spending to save more money.

A remarkable number of online businesses overspend with a vendor because they haven’t shopped around.

In one case, a client that was spending $40,000 on one service ended up with another vendor who charged $3,000 for the same service.

Other companies spend money that doesn’t need to be spent at all. Why would a company buy an online advertising platform when they could get it for free from Google DFP? Why spend money on Photoshop when many of the same capabilities are available for free with Gimp?

Cost analysis is a useful task to complete during any financial reporting period, such as the end of the month numbers.

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