If you were to count the number of gun shops, manufacturers, pawn shops, and gunsmiths it’d be in the hundreds of thousands.  In this industry you are unique, there’s only one company exactly like yours and the key to succeeding is to stand out and show the world how you’re different.  With that said it is 2015 and 95% of all exposure your company will get is from the internet. Without a good looking, and effective website you are hamstringing yourself.  Many people say “well a good website is expensive, we can make do with a canned design or a quick site”. That simply isn’t the case anymore.  Canned designs and clunky code are as bad if not worse than no site at all.

    Flock of Sheep

While many canned or templated designs may look good to the untrained eye, the problem becomes apparent when you look back at the very key of marketing, BEING UNIQUE. For example this theme costs a whopping $49, and it actually looks pretty nice. http://themes.webcreations907.com/ninezeroseven/option-one/ But, as of this writing there are 8,131 other sites using this exact same code.  This means Google has seen the same code 8 thousand times before they see yours once.  Another side effect of this is that there is a chance your potential customers have seen this exact theme used before, possibly in an unflattering scenario. While many firms can modify these to look dramatically different than the default purchased look; your average web user or business owner cannot, and that means in a sea of Eight Thousand similar faces, you don’t stand out.    

Thank you, Come again.

Another issue with many of these canned options (which some web firms pass off as custom.) is that they are almost exclusively written and coded in countries like India, Russia, or Pakistan. Which means if you need support from them, you’re stuck with a long wait and a language barrier. If your time is not valuable to you, or if the challenge of communicating with an Indian tech support is exciting, these may be only a minor inconvenience. However if a problem in your web-store arises, this could be a serious challenge.    

When Custom is Out of Reach

Sometimes things need to be done fast, or your budget just can’t stretch to cover truly custom code. Our prices, wiliness to trade, and a team of 20 talented individuals make this a VERY rare occurrence, but it has happened before.  In these situations templated sites are a good choice. But using them correctly is essential. Templates should NEVER be considered a complete solution, but they can take dozens of hours out of the process of building your site. Once the template is installed, take extra time to ensure that there are no security holes. Then remove the parts that you don’t need to ensure your site loads fast. The final step is to take extra time ensuring that your photos, your logo, and your content can set you apart from the herd.  

Case Study: Exodus Gun Leather

Like many of our clients, Carl came to use dismayed at how his site was performing. His previous web design company had absolutely no knowledge of the gun industry, and this made his Google results nearly non-existent. Carl had a relatively good looking template based website but it was slow, and cumbersome to run his custom gunleather company through.  By taking the time to learn more about Exodus Gun Leather we were able to craft a set of tools that would serve his needs without hassle and fluff that slowed him down. We even found a few ways to go above and beyond his needs to make the daily management of his site easier. We integrated a custom invoicing system to allow him to offer made to order holsters, we created comprehensive intelligent forms that took hours of communication time off his weekly schedule, and finally we made him a small area to sell finished ready to ship products.  These advanced functions would not have been possible working inside the mold of a pre-made theme.  In addition to making life easier, his site has moved up dramatically in google results, which is always good in a time when over 90% of all purchases are made after searching on Google.     If you want to break free from the pack, contact us today to get your custom coded website project started!

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