(INM) Can you tell the difference in quality between an amateur hockey team and a professional one? Of course you can. Professional hockey teams are demonstrably more effective and successful than their amateur counterparts. NHL teams boast much higher quality talent and more top-level skill sets than any amateur league, even if you include the Toronto Maple Leafs.
Or how about dentistry? Would you feel comfortable going to an amateur dentist? Not likely, probably not even an amateur dental hygienist.
In fact, numerous scientific studies show people are highly influenced by perceived professionalism. We don't need scientists, however, to tell us experts who have dedicated their lives to a profession know more than a newbie.. We are all aware how much more comfortable we are trusting the expertise and experience of pros in practically every discipline, compared to even the most enthusiastic amateur.
If looks could kill
The harsh reality is that we now know almost 40% of online visitors will stop engaging with a website the moment unattractive layout or poor design is noticed. In fact, according to industry surveys, an estimated 94% of web surfers claim poor web design has been a reason for mistrusting a business. Furthermore, a whopping 75% of your site visitors will base your company's credibility entirely on your web design. Given that it has been shown that it only takes approximately .05 of a second to develop an opinion about a web page, the negative impact of an amateurishly-designed site can't be understated.
The Pros of Professionalism
To demonstrate the difference between amateurism and professionalism in a variety of disciplines, lets look at the results offered by each choice and see how many times professionalism wins:
|Professional Earth Moving Companies||Amateur Earth Moving Companies|
|Professional Chefs||Amateur Chefs|
|Professional Currency Printers||Amateur Currency Printers|
|Professional Stone Carvers||Amateur Stone Carvers|
The Exception Proves the Rule
Okay, so the professionals appear to be winning in the examples provided, as well as in virtually any other workplace situation you can think of, with the only exception, perhaps, being the staff at a kissing booth. Who, after all, wants to kiss a professional kisser?
When Amateurism Costs You Money
Now that we have established how dim a view people take of amateurism in the business world, consider your company website. This is your street sign, your calling card and your international reputation all rolled into one. An amateurish website will not only fail to attract customers but may drive them into the arms of your competitors. This is unfortunate because the difference in cost between a professional created website and a DIY effort is not as much as you think. Once you factor in the time it takes to learn how to use web design tools to gain even a modicum of proficiency, add in the costs associated with "freemium" website companies and also allow for the poor sales results offered by an amateur design, professionalism will look like a bargain. Give your web designer a call and you may be surprised how little it takes to add professionalism to your business site.