Here’s a selection of the feedback I recently got from my Pro Web Design Course students.
I asked the following 5 questions:
- How familiar were you with me and my work before you got interested in the Pro Web Design Course? (e.g. Had you bought my books, were you on my mailing list, or did you just come across the site one day?)
- What three things most appealed to you about the course?
- What concerns did you have about signing up?
- Why did you finally decide to take the course?
- Please describe what you’ve gotten out of the course so far?
This is a good sequence of questions, because they form a human story, which makes for good testimonial material. Testimonials are authentic when they’re honest and complete, which is why it’s important to ask about concerns and doubts.
I’m going to take you through the responses, and I’ll highlight the marketing gold contained within…
Q1: How familiar were you with me and my work before you got interested in the Pro Web Design Course?
Found out about you initially through an online book review, alas I forget who wrote it, I was looking for SEO info and conversion rates as I’m rewriting client site content.
I had look at your site and was impressed both with the content and the fact that you are generous with the info you give out (this aligns with my values as I’m a great believer in freely sharing knowledge).
Signed up for the newsletter, found a youtube interview which further reassured me of your credentials.
Had a look at Amazon and Convert. Decided a week later I needed the book and ordered it from Book Depository… (yes it’s a long story but shows you how all this results in building relationship and trust with consumer).
Until you ask, you just don’t know. It really is a marketing crime to guess how people find out about you.
I had heard about you when you had launched Save the Pixel – the first edition. I just happened to come across the pro web design course link while reading/surfing the internet at work.
I do think you could do much more to get the word out there. Its a great course and you should proudly talk about it both online and offline.
It can be really uplifting and energising to get positive feedback like this.
I wasn’t, it was as a result of the Wordtracker Webinar
I’d known of you through your book Save the Pixel, which I think Ken McCarthy had mentioned. I bought the book. You emailed me about the publication of your new book, Convert! I bought the book the first day it was available on Amazon.com, and I read it immediately. I loved it. Then I heard you were going to be presenting at The System Seminar in 2011.
I came across your website a while ago (don’t remember how I actually found it) and I was getting your emails on 50 Web Design Secrets via your mailing list.
I imagined this would be quite a common path. Not remembering how they found the site, but joining the mailing list. (Tip: If you don’t have a mailing list, start one today!)
Having started to research web design and all of the related online material out there I came across webdesignfromscratch. It was only after reading several articles that I became aware of your work.
Although as I had only started to research web design seriously with the intention of learning about it more seriously this isn’t really too surprising. I signed up to the course shortly after.
What interests me is that some people have a long gestation period before they decide to take the course, while others sign up almost immediately. What does this mean? Just that there are different people out there.
Everyone has their own level of need regarding information. Some of us need a lot of reassurance, maybe in the content, in the support available, or in the possibilities the product will open up for them. If you don’t know what these points are, how can you cover them all?
If you’re getting a reasonable response rate by providing a bit of information, how much more of the market could you convince by providing still more information?
I was already on your mailing list and very impressed with the free advice I got that way. I came to you via recommendations from at least one, if not all of the other gurus I follow, namely Perry Marshall, Glen Livingston and Ken McCarthy.
I had Came across the site one day and it looked interesting so i bookmarked the page. I later was in search of a way to learn php but i wanted to of course learn html and every thing up to the php very well i have taken college course of web design and they did me absolutely no good. Its not like i didn’t pay attention in the class, I Aced all of them. so in hope of learning more about html i signed up for your mailing list and received the “every thing you know about web design is wrong” videos and they intrigued me.
Great to know this new video series is working!
Not familiar at all. Came across your site one day. I can’t remember exactly how, possibly from some search I did for “best web sites” or “best web designs” or something like that.
I had read some of ‘save the Pixel’ online and signed up for your 50 tips e-mails – which I really enjoyed.Hugh Evans
Good 🙂 Another frequent comment.
Initially, the articles on Web Design from Scratch. The quality and readability of those articles made me sign up to your mailing list & buy the first edition of Save the Pixel. I think that book is what really got me hooked.Derek
“Hooked” is a great word.
Found your site webdesignfromscratch, years ago. When I have had the time I took to reading the articles there, and found great inspiration. I loved the website redesigns, even though I did not agree with all of them.Daniel Hansson
Not at all, hadn’t even heard of you. I’m a Graphic Designer and I had been learning Dreamweaver, html and css and was getting lost in all the information out there on the net. so i was on the look out for a course that consolidated everything that i had been learning and showed me the best way of doing things and exactly what i needed to know to become a freelancer. I found you on Google.Lori Finn
Somewhat – did a web design unit at Uni where i work last year and save the pixel was featured heavily.
I knew “Save the Pixel” is used in education, but not “heavily”.
I stumbled upon the webdesign from scratch website last year while browsing for web design tips online. I was very impressed with the content so I bought all the e-books including save the pixel. Ever since that day I’ve been following your work so when the pro webdesign course was available, I was more than happy to sign up!
Another quick win, but they’re not all like that. You may always get easy sales, but the tree doesn’t just have low-hanging fruit. I’m learning it’s worth investing energy to get all the benefit you can from a market/product before moving on.
Have bought your books, on mailing list, have been following your site off and on for a few years.
Not at all familiar. I was messing with the new iGoogle home page, and added the google app ‘Web Design from Scratch’.
Followed it up, saw the web site, realised this guy was the real deal, so dived in.
I was fairly familiar. I had purchased your book “Save the Pixel” previously. I was also on your mailing list. You were recommended by Ken McCarthy so that holds a lot of weight with me.
William Redd II
Professional recommendations, interviews, speaking engagements, guest appearances etc. are very “soft PR”, i.e. it’s hard to correlate those activities directly with results. So it’s great to get confirmation.
Not at all. You Brits are not as famous here in the US.!? My first contact was a WordTracker seminar about the 5 mistakes in web design. I was hooked.
“Hooked” again, and another vote for the Wordtracker webinar (which I presented to 500 members of the partner’s list). List sharing is a great way to increase your exposure.
I came across the old Web design from scratch site a few years back and had purchased the Save the Pixel book and joined the forums. I just didn’t have the time to pursue things properly. I’m as impressed now as I was then with the whole set-up, it’s friendliness, approachability and a distinct lack of elitism that many other web design forums/blogs seem to exude.
I first came across one of your article through search I guess (not sure), which mentioned about ‘ergonomic keyboard’ etc… I found that helpful and I bought an ergonomic keyboard and mouse for me. And you know? My pain in my arm gone after shifting to ergonomic keyboard. Then I bookmarked your site and started listening to your articles. And at that time I was in need of a website. I bought a clicss template and made the site. This is the story of start-up of my relationship with you.
Here’s a new subscriber from some obscure long-tail content. Who would have thought a piece of an article about “ergonomic keyboard” would one day result in a sale of a $900 course?
I had subscribed to your top 50 Tips and found them to always be insightful and practical.
I liked your tone and approach – 100% focus on results for clients. It was clear to me that your passion and motivation is to help people become great web designers.
That’s exactly what I love to see! It’s a sign that the brand is working.
If you first choose who you are for the world, and keep doing it over and over, the world will get the message. It’s also pretty easy to be yourself. Margaret picked up on my passion, and it struck a chord with her.
You’re much more likely to get a strong, emotional, motivating response from people if you put your own heart and soul into your communication.
I remember Googling “Web 2.0” and then signed up for your 50 web design secrets. Loved them, you were pretty high on my trust list.
Another reason to communicate with integrity over time. We all have our own mental lists of the brands or people we trust in life. Make it your objective to be at the top of someone’s trust list.
Very familiar. I have Save the Pixel, and Convert, and read a lot of what you wrote in various places on the net.
I had read exerpts of save the pixel and realised that you had a very unique approach to visual web design.
Q2: What three things most appealed to you about the course?
It covers all the basics without getting too complex (week 2 of the course and I’m happily doing simple html coding for site content).
It clearly explains WHY web 2.0 is a logical concept to make info easily accessible to consumers: I was discussing this with a friend and used the analogy of signage in a train station, not fancy but you get the info you need to get where you want to go, which is what it’s all about.
It covers how marketing concepts apply to good web design, and vice versa, otherwise what’s the point!
I can’t remember what appealed to me before I signed up, but having experienced it, the three things that I’m most impressed with are:
1. The breadth of the course, so much more than website design — the name doesn’t really do it justice
2. The sheer amount of detail
3. Value for money, probably the best value course I’ve ever seen
Everyone has their own perception of value. Some people have told me how they saved up to join this course. Others signed up immediately, because it was immediately in their reach.
I have been looking for a course that has a focus on design and user experience rather than on programming – html and css. There are plenty of courses and resources online and offline to learn programming but nobody really teaches you to put it together to help clients meet their goals.
I was also quite impressed by how everyday of the week was dedicated to tackling one aspect of web design. The preview of Month 1 had me sold.
Great feedback. I didn’t know if adding the Table of Contents for Month 1 would have any effect.
I guess that any of the things you might try could help different people. Sometimes you can measure success through conversion optimisation, but other times you have to ask people.
Having been designed by someone with the experience of Ben within the web design industry
Your ‘real world’ and business-led approach.
Above all, the fact that you personally answered my e-mail concering “longevity” of a course I knew I could not complete in a year.Hugh Evans
Always worth giving people direct, personal responses. (Email me if you have any questions, by the way!)
1) I want to start a web design business. I’m currently a software engineer, but not web technologies. The fact that the course covers everything you need to start a business is what really appealed to me rather than just another technical course – there are hundreds of those. Also, the fact that it was being taught by someone who’s actually running a web design business and knows what they’re talking about.
The business insight and how you apply things to real projects and customers is what seemed to differentiate the course for me.
2) Text books are an increasingly dry way to learn and I have come to find (via youTube and some of the cheaper SitePoint video courses) that learning with some form of video content is much more engaging.
3) I think making the investment (financially and time wise) with the PWDC course gives me the push that I need to really commit to my plans to start my own business. It gives me a clear, structured learning path and a clear goal.Derek
Focus on marketing, sales, copywriting, analysis and SEO – as well as design – areas which are normally neglected in design courses. I have the technical skills, but lack some of the soft skills.
To get MORE in depth with the processes involved, than what could be gathered from Webdesignfromscratch.Daniel Hansson
This course IS deliberately different. It’s the Purple Cow of web design courses.
I had some knowledge on web design but I strongly felt that I needed more knowledge about SEO, site promotion, etc.
I think the fact that you put all the main components into “one package” was the most appealing for me.
I am a big fan of Lynda.com training courses (which I think is a very strong competitor of your course) but I wanted something more. And that’s when I figured out that you’ve created this great integrated course.
Actually, it was more based on the ideas presented in the Wordtracker Webinar.
Trust in “Ben Hunt” brand
Broad course content
It’s by the person who wrote Convert!
Covers whole topic. Focus on simplicity. Not about pretty, about results.
The distinct angle of this course is really hitting home with some folks.
1. The fact that the course included everything, there are many courses out there that will teach you the css, html, jQuery side and lots of courses on marketing and copywriting, but for someone on a low budget the ‘one course does it all’ option was very appealing.
2. Including designing for WordPress, saves me the headache of finding a CMS and has the ability to out perform everything i’ve looked at in the past.
3. The Marketing side of your course, I hated the usual marketing techniques out there, it’s nice to be introduced to a friendly way of doing it.
This is an interesting phrase… “one course does it all”.
Whenever you’re marketing anything, look out for a Unique Selling Proposition – something that no one else can (or will) claim. Something to put clear water between you and the alternatives, in your prospect’s mind. This one could be mine.
1. The quality of the course must be really good, I believe that even before i joined the course.
2. The course covers almost everything we need to know as a web designer, it doesn’t only teach you photoshop skills, it covers html, css, SEO, marketing, everything.
3. You’re doing good follow up service and it feels that you are easy to access in case there are problems
i) I really like how the course is structured e.g. Month 1 – 6, Week 1-4 and Day 1-5. This helps me to keep track of my progress and manage my study time properly.
ii) The course content varies each day e.g. Monday (Business), Tuesday (Design) etc. This keeps me engaged as I’m learning something different every day.
iii) There are a lot of practical examples throughout the course (website reviews, HTML and CSS etc). You don’t just tell me how to design , you also show me and that’s important!
A few people have said they like the fact that I cover one topic per day.
But everyone’s different. Some students have told me they follow one topic right through, then start at the beginning with a different topic.
So the important thing for me is to let everyone know that the course will work with the way that suits them.
Your knowledge, the design elements, working through a project “with you”, being able to learn from your approach.
1. Startgin over from the beginning step by step
2. Said i would learn web design along with SEO
3. Video and being able to download
1) Ben’s web site was impressive – simple, clear, elegant, logical. I wanted to make learn to make web sites like that.
2) In a follow up email, Ben reassured me that the course would be useful for someone at my level. (nonetheless, I still felt like it was a leap of faith…didn’t have any good video teasers then)
3) The cost seemed to offer value
Good to know that Chris thinks the video series is effective. All feedback is good feedback.
I wanted to learn web design and your expertise and experience convinced me it was a worthwhile course.[
Perhaps I should make more of my experience? It seems to carry weight.
1. That it was done over time and that I could work at my own pace.
2. That the segments are reasonably quick to watch — not hours at a time.
3. That your approach is a personal one (it’s you doing all the training) and that I am finding the education easy to understand
Working at your own pace is a common concern. You’ll see that come up a few times.
Lately, I am tending to stress the fact that you’ll be learning personally from me in the videos.
1. The SEO/keyword angle.
2. The WordPress stuff
3. The real-world approach to design
I always wanted to learn webdesign. I knew that I can be good at design. I was keeping the intention to learn webdesign for many years. But due to other emergencies, I always ‘forgot’ to learn it. So when opportunity came, I purchased your course.
The three things appealed:
1) Because it was from you, Ben. I like to trust people than materials or stuff. When I find a person behind something is good, then I’ll go for it. Personal attire is what I look most. The passion and interest and overall attire of the person are the most important thing for me to decide. For example, if I met a person who happens to be a photographer, I can give him work for my personal photography without seeing his work. From his attitude I can understand the quality. I acquired this kind of wisdom through experience. And I like to trust.
2) I wanted to learn web design. I was already decided. And I was only delaying it for long time.
3) It was from a person with experience.
I like the mystical approach behind Zahir’s choice.
1. It was online and I could do things at my own pace (I run my own graphic design business full time)
2. The full spectrum of web design instruction you offer – most courses I have taken or have seen offer only components ie ‘Learn HTML and CSS’. Whereas you offer all the components to create and build a web design business.
3. The style of presentation works for me the video and downloadable course notes combination is a winner.
“I will give away all my secrets”.
“Complete course” – fact that it was not only HTML or conversion or SEO… there was business fundamentals, project management, site reviews , just alot of material.
The price was to high for me at first (young guy) but that also told me that this was the “grand course” that I was aming for which made me want it even more.
Interesting how just one promise can make all the difference!
And it’s fantastic to know that people will make the effort to invest. The perfect brand is one where people want what’s on offer, and are willing to pay a bit more for it. (Not that this course has a premium price, but today it’s still quite an investment for many people.)
In depth videos, spread out into weekly assignments. I knew the content would be excellent because I also subscribe to web.tv works, and love your approach to analyzing websites.
Nice to see my other products being cross-referenced. WebsiteWorks.tv does not generate significant revenue itself, but it has other uses.
I watched a video and found that your explanations were very in depth and useful and you had a very calming voice! (usually I am totally stressed) maybe you should consider making a counselling course for webmasters!
I’m a B2B marketing consultant working with software and tech companies. Very few companies in these industries use the principles you teach in your book Convert! I wanted to learn more about how to apply them so I can better serve my clients. I also want to be able to build my own basic website for my own business. Finally, I intend to be an affiliate, and I don’t sell products I haven’t tested myself.
Covering another “long-tail” point here. Perhaps you are a B2B marketing consultant. If so, this course just got more relevant to you. If not, nothing has been lost. See the many levels of value in this feedback?
Q3: What concerns did you have about signing up?
None really because by then I was convinced that your offering was genuine, your values align with mine (very important to me at this stage in my life), the content was what I needed.
I’m also a very experienced distance learner, both undergraduate and master’s degrees by distance. And I could see that the forums would answer any questions I had.
I don’t know how I communicated that the forums would answer any questions, but it’s clearly important. One to note.
As with anything advertised online you really don’t know what you are signing up to until you do it. Although the PWDC homepage is very informative about the course and seemed to tick all the boxes so to speak I was still a little anxious about signing up and if the course would offer what it appeared to.
This really is the crux of all sales! How much do you have to do to tip the balance for the majority? What benefits do you have to show? What concerns do you have to resolve?
The cost versus what I would get out of the course — I know html, css and programming, but putting a business model together along with the other parts of making a website that draws traffic.
None really. Given the free advice I’d already received and the relatively low cost (and it was someone else’s money!), it didn’t seem much of gamble.
I’ve been giving away my best knowledge for 7 years. I’m a firm believer that it works.
Before I signed up, I had so much else happening at once that I didn’t have time to do an extensive course.
I also had reservations about the actual content–would it really teach everything I needed for professional web design.
Whether or not, if I failed to complete the course on schedule, I would lose the materials.Hugh Evans
A common concern that it’s easy to resolve. I tell prospects they can download ALL the materials and keep them for EVER.
No concerns really. I listened to one of your webinars and felt that I need to take this course.
Great to hear the words “I need to take this”. The webinars I was running clearly helped, as we saw sales after each webinar. This month I’m trying the same content but in a drip-feed video series. We’ll see how the results compare.
Opportunity to exploit gained knowledge/skills in current job
Overlap of material I already knew
Level of commitment (can I do this with a full time job, family etc)
Important point. Yes, you can do this if you work full-time. Yes, you can do this from home with small children.
Honestly, if I could have afforded it, I would have signed up on day one with the foundation group, but it was sadly outside my budget.
I think my only concern was that there might be sections of the course that I was not interested in. I don’t think the course content was as clear when I signed up as it is now. For example, my longer term plan is to become a Rails specialist. I was therefore a bit concerned that the course may contain large sections on learning PHP or technologies that didn’t appeal to me. This has not proved to be the case.Derek
Would it be worth it? Would I loose interest? Would it be a waste of money for something I could study for free if I did my research?
A common competitor is “free stuff online”, so it’s important to cover that point. Apathy – just not bothering – is another one…
Not many, just a slight doubt that you might be too good to be true.
I hope that has not proved to be the case.
The price. Being able to fit it in at this point in time (lots of other work and courses going on).
worried it would be another waste of TIME and MONEY! even with the guarantee i doubt even if i wanted to, couldn’t get anything back if it was a waste
It’s important to offer a guarantee. The positive impact on helping people to take action will far outweigh any costs down the line.
Could I keep up and learn it in 6 months along with my other college course requirements. But you offered to make it available for 12 months if I fell behind. I am behind.
Vital to have that direct communication channel. Without it, how many students would still be looking for that opportunity, instead of on their way to a new career?!
That I would be too busy to manage getting through the course and I am flat out with my own full time business. But I keep chipping away at it!
I try to stress how beneficial this is for owners of small/medium businesses.
My main concern was would I actually do the course. This has nothing to do with you, or the quality of the content, it’s simply about my priorities and taking the time. I trusted that the course would be good because of the quality of the book I purchased, your emails, and your website content.
William Redd II
You just need to build enough trust so it outweighs the doubt.
The only concern was the price. I had little doubt I wanted to do it, just whether I could afford it!
And now Tony’s on the course.
When I saw your course, I immediately decided to sign-in. But my other ‘urgencies’ pushed me little longer. Money was also an issue because I was going through a tight journey with money.
None whatsoever, I knew it would be extremely useful and you made it clear what the course was about
Because I’m not a site designer and don’t intend to be one, I was concerned whether I’d ever get back the money I was spending on it. I was also concerned that the course might be too oriented toward designers and not enough toward marketers.
Which is why I now make the guarantee: If you don’t make back more in profit than you spent on the course, I’ll refund every penny!
Q4: Why did you finally decide to take the course?
Must confess that while I knew the value of the course, I could not afford it (single mum with 3 jobs while I’m trying to get to where I want to be…) But then I thought of the opportunities this would give me and decided to sign up.
My plan is now to offer a content writing service for small businesses selling green products, many small business owners have a great business but not the skills or time to come up with valuable content.
I have also been accepted in a 4-week business startup workshop (free, courtesy of a government grant), along with 20 other budding entrepreneurs, another amazing opportunity which came along this week. I simply cannot believe how things are lining up at the moment!
I read all the free information and tutorials you provide on your site and thought “This guy seems to know what he’s talking about and looks pretty honest” and the price was really good compared to the combined price of others I’d been looking at.
“Looks pretty honest” is worth a lot to me. The online world is so low in credibility, how can you really establish enough trust to get someone to invest hundreds of dollars in you? As we’ve seen in many cases, you need to establish a relationship over time.
Because you reassured me that most of the material would be there for ever.Hugh Evans
Personal contact & reassurance again.
I thought OK, it’s now or never to make a commitment to doing this course. That and the fact (as I stated earlier) I really needed something to give me that push to get on and do something.Derek
I find there’s a strong link between investment and motivation. The more you pay, the more you expect to get, and the more you put in.
I don’t learn well from books – programming/coding books generally makes me sleepy. Have not tried your books yet though, and since you got them on ebook format, I am gonna give them a whirl.
I do not have the time to spare to go to evening or weekend classes.
I did research to find independent reviews of the course, and my google-fu is epic. I struggled to find a single bad word, and I was impressed with how well the search results always led the way back to your site. I thought to myself, “Hey, if he has done this for this course, I want to learn how to do it for myself.”
Online learning with no time table suits me perfectly. For instance, I have not had time to do any classes for a week, but I know I can pick it up straight away, right where I left off. Thank goodness we do not have to send stuff in!Daniel Hansson
There are some useful points here, which I can adapt into marketing. “Don’t have time for evening classes?” “Do you find it hard to learn from books?”…
i) I could try the course for a month first then decide if it was the right course for me.
ii) Flexible payment – monthly installments.
iii) I could cancel the course at anytime.
We no longer have an easy-start option, but maybe we should reinstate that.
i am just really wanting to learn and understand. and a posible few extra dollars to earn by designing sites wouldn’t hurt while in college.
I’ve created a whole new proposition for people who want to earn your way through college.
Having recently changed jobs and still not doing what I would consider a career i felt that now was the right time to really start taking web design seriously as it is something I had always wanted to learn more about, even from my time as a student.
Upon graduating I would love to have started freelance web design work however I didn’t have the technical skills to make this a reality. Upon finding the course online it just felt like the right course for me compared to the other courses that claim to teach you web design at a much more expensive cost.
Also knowing that the course has been designed by someone currently in the industry with the experience that Ben has basically sealed the deal for me.
There are much more expensive courses out there, which don’t cover a fraction of the content.
Dissatisfaction with current job
Working for myself is very attractive!
Have build websites (on the side) but wanted to find out if I could do this for a living.
That’s a strong vision – being your own boss! “You can make a living doing this.”
I really wanted to learn and design websites well as per the current standards in design in the UK and the USA. The course seemed promising and it has kept its promise so far!
Ben seemed reputable, honest, and clearly made damn good web sites.
But the clincher was reading his first book (Save The Pixel).
It was such a well-written book – clear, punchy, informative, laid down the rules like railroad tracks, plus great value – that it was as enjoyable as reading a book by Steve Krug, or Ladislav Sutnar.
For less than $1,000 it was a bargain and seemed very comprehensive.
Again, $900 is a lot of money for many people. It’s all relative. The promise of seeing your money back will apply to everyone though.
A single line in the ‘My promise to you’ section: “you’ll have confidence in your ability” – that’s been my downfall in the past so that single line rang all sorts of bells and practically single-handedly made me click ‘join’.
Another single line that made all the difference.
As I told, I was already decided to learn web design, somehow got delayed. When I could arrange money and make myself free for the course, I went for it.
Sometimes you need to take a leap of faith and commit to your dreams.
I like that Margaret!
Because I could afford it. Simple. Even though my client base is expanding, I still need to watch my expenses. However, your course is really an investment in my future, not an expense.
Sick of my lack of graphics ability and not knowing where to put them, sick of all the bullsh*tters, determined to master this if it takes me forever!
I’m proud, a) that I don’t come across as a bullsh*tter, and b) that I did enough to persuade Susan that this course could deliver what she needs, where others have failed.
Q5: Please describe what you’ve gotten out of the course so far?
A structured way to approach what I need to know.
Tools to take to my client and support my recommendations to him.
Confidence that by the time I finish the course I will be able to offer a complete service to my clients.
The confidence to go and do it myself.
Since I’ve started the course my design skills have dramatically improved! I feel a lot more confident using Photoshop and the different SEO tools. This course has opened up my eyes to see web design in a totally different way. I know how to communicate now and not to decorate. I also find the business part of the course very helpful as I am thinking of starting my own mobile web design business. This course is the best investment I’ve made this year!
LOTS, so much information, so little time!
I like the way you present your tutorials, very down to earth and not just a step by step approach, you sometimes do things one way and then correct yourself later, this shows me how your brain is working out the problem and shows me how to correct my own problems that i come across.
The vast amount of information you provide is awesome and also the links to other sites around the internet is very useful, not only for what you want me to learn from their site as part of the course but it also gives me another resource to use in future.
Semantic HTML – Wicked! There are so many tutorials out there showing how to build sites and i had already learned some bad habits, it’s nice to see how it’s meant to be done.
I am not finished the course yet, i thought i’d be able to fire through it but i think it’s going to take the whole 6 months to process all the information properly, it’s 6 months well spent as far as I’m concerned. I am becoming a very confident web designer due to the Pro Web Design Course and have no regrets at all about purchasing it.
Apart from the business modules, I absolutely love all the SEO stuff a completely new subject to me, but I love it!
I really like the practicals when they relate to my business. From identifying what my business niche might be, working on my brand etc. to researching the keywords for my business. Whenever it feels like it’s applying to the real world, it’s great. It makes me feel like I’m moving forward with my business plans.
Some of best parts of the course have been the “extras”. I think the fact that you don’t know what might be coming up next makes it quite exciting.
Web Site Works is brilliant. I get so much out of watching your reviews of real sites, what’s bad & good, and how to improve them. I make so many notes when watching those videos.
I do like the sense that I’m not just reading a set of course notes and watching some videos. The additional webinars, offers like newbie PPC, and the forum do make you feel part of something that’s a little more alive and exciting and that makes the learning more fun.
I really liked the guest presenter webinar (newbie PPC). Insights and different perspectives from different people in the industry is great. More of those if possible please.
Your availability and contributions to the forums, additional webinars and responsiveness to adding requested content all go to making this course feel like something special.
Overall this course is giving me the confidence and skills that I need to start my own business and to know that I’m approaching things in a professional way and will be providing a quality service to my customers.
It’s also reassuring to know that during the learning process there’s support and help out there should I need it.Derek
Confidence in that after I am through, I can make a living as a freelancer/contractor, even in cold cold Sweden. I have seriously no doubt about it.
Casefiles – I love that we are able to download both the videos and the casefiles for review offline. I can bring the course with me, even to our summer house.
Greater understanding of SEO and what makes search engines tick.
Confidence in starting our first online campaign this summer for the family company. We did facebook advertising and google advertising concurrently, for a summer sale.
Same content in both ads. Noteably though, Facebook advertising was a lot cheaper and easier to target our focus groups, while the Google ads gave more exposure for our relevant search terms. Worth bringing up? Noted that for a first attempt it was a success for brand awareness, but not so much for sales. Something I have no doubt I will get more experience in as the course moves along
Oh in case you are wondering – I am still at month 2. Can’t imagine what month 6 will be like.Daniel Hansson
How you approach design (yay!). How you approach a project as a whole — eg keyword research, traffic, optimisation, link building etc, in a very specific way (not just generalisations but actually doing it for particular instances). Knowledge of various tools — Marketing Samurai and other optimisation tools. Photoshop knowledge!
Pretty much all the skills described as part of the course and taught in the course, eg:
Ability to design & build simple, clear, meaningful web design that treats users with great respect (eg. doesn’t waste their time)
Much better understanding of web SEO
Better technical ability with CSS, HTML, Photoshop
A link into the upper echelons world of web design (via Ben and the seminars and courses he promotes)
It has been an educational experience to learn the 21st century marketing tools that were not taught in college when I graduated in marketing many years ago.
That there’s sooooooo much more to websites than just building. So much research needs to be done prior to building. Most clients instantly want to see a design/layout. “Ooh what’s my site going to look like?”…. the education process is HUGE with clients.
It’s made me aware that we need to have a broader range of skills for building a site if you do this as a web developer on your own. Design, usability, HTML/CSS skills (though with CMS some may not think so), but also have a marketing head on your shoulders. I am finding myself more cautious with sites as I take them on, as there is so much to a successful site — I am over building sites that don’t rank, bring business, are too hard to use and look like just another typical website. If anything I think it’s made my job more complex and I spend more time researching to get the build right.
Also since starting this course I have also sourced a marketing person to help with writing site content after the basic research is done. It’s made a big difference to have that skill set helping.
Confidence, confidence, confidence through a clear understanding of what makes websites fail (I LOVE the Website Works vids). Also the SEO/keyword angle has been jaw-dropping. I’ve not seen this kind of help or info anywhere else on the web. And I’m now delving into WordPress in a way I would never have dreamed possible only a few months back.
Also something else: a kind of understanding of ‘real world’ web design issues – many books, blogs, online vids deal with CSS or HTML in a near abstract way, removed from real site situations. Sometimes you enter a ‘CSS blog’ and feel like you’re in the inner sanctum of some obscure language written by some ‘master’. It’s annoying and can also be slightly intimidating. I can now see there’s nothing particularly ‘real’ about that approach. Of course CSS is important, but at the end of the day it’s just a tool, it’s not poetry, and a website needs a whole load of other stuff to make it work.
Also my own site…previously I had adopted the ‘designer’ mantle and my site was very much like a lot of designers’ sites: pretty, exclusive, removed from any need to grab attention or push for clients. It was a piece of ‘art’, not a website! Well I’m currently reworking it in a BH kinda way and feel soooo liberated by that.
I now KNOW where it should be going and thanks to Convert! and the Awareness Ladder its self-image has changed radically from one of ‘preciousness’ to a practical application of real world principles. (I’ll be starting a blog soon where I’ll be doing a lot of book reviews, Convert! will be top of the list.) This course has re-focused my attention, made me see what the real web design issues are and what they are not!
Thanks for everything Ben, I’ve been busy of late finishing a project but will be back on track with the course and the forums shortly. And another thing, I’m damn sure you could charge a lot more than you currently do!!
A better understanding of web design and where it is heading in the future.
More confidence in all aspects of web design and web marketing.
Renewed vigour in making web sites successful.
Great appreciation of whats missing in majority of web sites.
A better smarter foundation for approaching web design.
Of the work I have been able to get through I have got a lot out of the keywords, traffic, competition and spotting niches – this has been useful in current client work and Adwords campaigns recently undertaken. Introduction to a tool like Market Samurai was great!
I have also downloaded the books you have given us access to – many, many thanks! So Valuable!!
Far more then I ever expected. I design web sites in a way that even veteran swedish web designers dont undestand and they cant respond to it. They cannot delive result, which I can. They make a sience of something I can make simple.
It has taken my business to a whole new level and a whole new approach to every detail in my business really.
From selling to producing to follow up – every word – every sale – everything has changed for the better with new understanding of people and marketing.
That is not including the leads to the system seminar which lead to affiliate marketing, webinars etz which I probably would never have found unless I was on the PWDC.
Oh btw, the price is not to high. If anything you could charge more.
Here is a great summary. I used to drive a old Saab and now I drive a new Audi. That just says everything.
Without giving you my life background, but I have no prior education.
I’ve been making web sites as a hobby for 10 years but never known anything about internet marketing.
After “Swedish high school” I went to work as a car mechanic at my dads company.
Clients used to just get a web site. These days they know that if they give me one dollar they will probably get 2 or 3 dollars back. They get business which is what its all about.
I was not really a professional so I obviously learned ALOT. But that also says alot about the quality of the course. I skipped everything about HTML, CSS and Photoshop and still I’ve learned more then I could ever expect.
Professionals can learn from it, beginners can learn alot from it. It also puts web design in a brand new perspective that its not about development skills.
After watching month one, I emailed 4-5 of my clients and asked to make some changes to their website and I said: “Its just an experiment, but if this makes a good impact on your conversion, is it OK if I charge X dollars?” The course paid for itself from just the impact of one of those “experiments”.
Most of this stuff is fundamental and thats the part were missing.
In month one when there was like “Definition of a trade” I though “seriously… I’m not that bad…” but I learned alot even at that level and I belive most people do.
I watch clients how they run their business and probably 70% of them dont know the real definition of a trade. Everything has changed since the course.
Also not included, the absolutely great “community” feel to the forums and blog posting and everything.
Here is a short list of what has changed because of the course:
- Business is developed from a clients perspective
- Business is beeing done outside sweden aswell.
- I also makes web site reviewes – and people pay for the opinion
- Every design comes with a “strategy” or a “This is how its gonna work for you”
- When people ask how much it cost to make a web site, the only answer is “How much do you want to earn?”
- When people ask why something is not working I love to be able to say “Because…” rather then “huh.. well I dont know”.
- Marketing is no longer a gamble and I try to make sure my clients feel the same way
- Selling production / programming is no longer as important – more time goes to creating result.I’ve been planing to make that testimonial video for you but Ben, you’ve kind of made me busy 😛
You can’t really top that!
Better understanding of business & importance of usability and end user experience.
I feel more confident now that i am well armed to approach bigger clients and help them successfully achieve their business/marketing goals through their website.
too much to mention, bear in mind I have not put it all into practice yet, bin building a new site, massive improvement visually
Once I can master the affiliate marketing I will undoubtedly promote your course.
Thank you so much!
I appreciate you and your staff for the high quality effort that you put into your offerings. You must all work hard. as indicated by the volume of output I see practically every day. Although I had investigated web design for some time, I had never heard anyone advocating the goal-oriented approach to web design that you teach. I had read books on web design, but I don’t recall reading the kind of perspective you offer. If I did read it before, it didnt’ stick. You emphasize it so much that it makes a lot of sense and I’ll never forget it.
Fundamental change in understanding what “web design” actually is!
Confidence that I can deliver a valuable service
Enthusiasm/interest in “marketing!”
I think I like your material and the way you are presenting it to the audience.
Everything is pretty strait forward and to the point. No fuzzy definitions and complicated explanations.
So I am glad I have decided to take your class 🙂
It’s early days for me yet as I am only in my second week of the course but already I feel I have learned so much, and just from looking at the course material still ahead of me over the next few months I feel confident it will teach me the skills I need to build successful websites. Already I am becoming more confident with html and css and also SEO.