"Have web budget. Must spend." leads to bad websites

I spend a lot of time telling organisations they need to be on the web. But, you know what? I should spend more time telling them not to develop a website.
Money crossed out
For a long time getting the web into a communications budget was hard work. Oh boy. We had to "sell the internet" to so many people.

Eventually some of them got it and started to fund useful sites. But success has its drawbacks. Over time the web has become a "line item", a "check box", a "budget allocation".

A lot of internet managers don't have to justify their funding any more. They get budget by default. Especially in government.

And let me tell you "have web budget, must spend" does not lead to good websites.

Oh no.

Such "line item" sites have:
  • No clear goals
  • No clear audiences
  • No metrics to measure success 

Beauty is skin deep - ugliness goes right to the bone

In short, they may look great - but their true ugliness cuts to the bone. They are pointless and a waste of money. Taxpayers money. Your money.

The money spent on such sites would be better spent elsewhere:
  • On printed brochures
  • On newspaper ads
  • On door-to-door visits
  • On sky writing aeroplanes
  • On anything - but not on the web

I make websites, but, a word in your ear

If the only reason you are starting your web project is because "we got the budget" ... STOP. Instead ask:
  • Is this really right for the web?
  • Can the web actually help?
  • Would this money get a better return if spent elsewhere, e.g. voice automation?

Sure, I can make the website for you if you insist. But - you know what - I'll feel bad for you.

Read more about this topic: 'Stop redesigning. Start investing in digital skills!'