A conversation with Nick Schommer, Head of Business Development at Spotlight Media
Spotlight Media is many things more than just a magazine company. Did you know that we’re not only a full-service marketing agency but that we’re also at the forefront of web design? I sat down with Nick Schommer, Spotlight Media’s Head of Business Development, to discuss the work in our web design and development division, some of our most notable clients and how people can begin working with us. While Spotlight Media has been offering web design services for 4 years and has served 70 websites in that span, Schommer, as well as other in-house developers, have over a decade of significant expertise and experience.
Head of Business Development at Spotlight Media
Customized website design and development can become very ambiguous, very quickly. Developers can create a very simple website that’s a handful of pages, all the way up to a full e-commerce site that’s completely custom-developed, or anything in between. What we focus on is trying to create forward-thinking and great-looking websites that are not only functional but also help customers drive leads.
Did You Know?
Nick Schommer has been a part of 200-plus website design builds over the past 10 years!
Our Extensive List of Services!
Spotlight Media is still primarily known as a print media company. Some people may be unaware of the capabilities that we have with web design, as well as the companies that we’ve worked with to prove our reputability, such as Hebron Brick and Thunder Seed.
How do you explain how Spotlight Media’s web design process works for the customer?
I think it just comes down to what the customer wants. I like to compare building a website to building a home. Oftentimes, a lot of people tend to look at websites like magic. They often think that it’s just “drag and drop” and that it’s really easy and basic. When I use the house concept, it tends to put a much more realistic perspective in their head. You can have 2 different 2,500 square-foot homes, right next to each other. One can be worth $200,000, while the other can be worth $1 million. The difference is what went into the house.
That’s very similar to a website. If you have granite versus laminate countertops in a house or other accessories, those little things add up in value. That’s a very simplistic way to think of a website in terms of costs and how it’s been built. Sites like GoDaddy and Wix are really easy tools for anybody to build a website. Anyone can get a website up and running pretty easily, but to make it look good, function correctly and offer a good user experience is a whole different ball game.
What are some of the bigger things that Spotlight Media does to drive traffic or get people to check out websites that we build your clients?
We look at this as a reverse engineering process. We ask ourselves “What is the main goal of this website?” I would say that 9 out of 10 times, the goal is to drive leads to a certain page. Currently, we’re building a client’s website where they want users to come to the site with the goal of scheduling a tour. When that tour is scheduled, they see the team, location, founder’s name, email and so on. Our job is to drive traffic to it. There’s a lot that goes into that, but we’re using design and strategy to persuade people to go where we want them to go within the site.
OUR WEBSITES ARE DIFFERENT. WE BUILD DYNAMIC SALES TOOLS TO INSPIRE ACTION & HELP YOU GROW.”
Website & Brand Redesigns Include:
- Goldmark Commercial
- Rice Companies
- Eventide Senior Living
- Be More Colorful
- Axis Properties R
- ed River Ag
How many websites have been built in the past four years at Spotlight Media so far? What has Spotlight Media learned through its growing experience?
We’ve designed and built out dozens of websites with varying levels of size and impact in their market. I’ve realized throughout my experience of building websites that making a website solely look good is easy and solely making a website function is easy, but it’s more challenging and most important to incorporate both of those.
One of the things that we realized is that some people are very good at designing, while others are very good at building and developing, but companies can have a tough time finding people who can bring it all together. When we look at other competitors, some websites are very logical and function great, but they look terrible. That blend of design and development can make or break a website, and Spotlight has both qualities so that we can help with setting up a plan and getting more website traffic.
What happens after Spotlight Media builds out a client’s site?
We have a hosting maintenance plan that we usually keep clients on for a low cost and keep that relationship between companies. We hope all of our customers enjoy the process and want to continue to partner together in different ways, whether it be through sales, stories or any other to keep that business relationship steadily going.
Why should a newcomer work with Spotlight Media for web design?
We build websites in a very entrepreneurial way. We’re always looking for resources & tools that help us be more efficient throughout the process. That efficiency helps us cut unnecessary costs without cutting corners on design. With the technology that we have today, we’re able to deliver high-quality designs that function just as great without having to build a completely custom-developed website. We use WordPress which is an open-source platform in which we have the ability to do anything we want, but it also has a strong community that builds different plugins/widgets that we can utilize for certain functionalities that we need.
Words From Our Clients
“We have used Spotlight Media for the last couple of years in a variety of capacities including website development, video production and product materials (brochures, etc). They have always been easy to work with, communicate well during the process and deliver as promised. They have really become our outsourced marketing team. The work they do allows us to focus on the work we do at the core of our business.”– ASPIRE BANK
“I am the Chief Marketing Officer for the Avalon Events Center and we had Mike and his amazing team design our newest website. We had originally intended on having them update and fix the website we had, but after our meeting we had no doubt having them build us a new site was the direction we had to go. Not only was there an amazing design concept, but they also created the content and optimized every aspect imaginable. The turnaround time was head spinning. We were so happy with our end product. We highly suggest this amazing company for any content from print to digital.”-AVALON EVENTS CENTER
What are some of the biggest tips you have for clients?
I think that the content they offer on their website is critical to the success of the site. When people come to us to redo or improve their website, and they don’t have good content, or simply enough content, but they want to boost their SEO and website traffic, it’s not going to work out well for them. I think just having the content, in general, is more important than most people would assume.
I strongly believe that the process of how a website is I strongly believe that a website should be as simple and clean as it can be. It should have a clear direction or call to action so potential customers can get the information they’re looking for as fast and easy as possible. For a high-quality site, a lot goes into it and it’s far more than just a template. When people begin making their own website on Wix or any other free website design website, they see the “drag and drop” option and find it to be easy for them. However, when they see the final product, they’re quickly going to realize how much time they wasted when they expected a lot more out of it. We can deliver what you were expecting to see and more. We have designers who are creating custom graphics, layouts and designs for the site and client’s use.
Another thing that I hope people understand too is what the typical investment looks like. I think that a lot of people believe that you can get a perfect website for $5,000. In reality, your website is never going to be perfect and you should be constantly updating and changing it so your website reflects the changes in business or how customers are engaging with it. At the end of the day, your website should be your #1 sales rep. It’s there 24/7, 365 days a year and it never gets sick or asks for time off. Anyone who is looking for information is either asking Google or a friend for help. We can talk more about the friend later, but the importance of a good website is still undervalued in a day and age when technology and information are at everyone’s fingertips.
Spotlight Media’s Design Process
From rapid prototyping to production, our UX / UI design is focused on customer experience, ensuring that every interaction reflects your brand and delivers greater value.
When created strategically, content reflects the brand, aligns with the design and platform and acts as the touching point between brand and consumer. Content does more than express corporate messages—it starts real conversations.
Our design and development teams work collaboratively. Development not only turns our strategy and design into something tangible; it plays an important role in completing the consumer experience.
Spotlight Media’s Web Design Strategy
- Digital Strategy
- Consumer Research
- Industry Research
- Analytics, data & SEO
- Omni-channel Strategy
- Creative Direction
- UX/UI Design
- Mobile | Responsive Design
- eCommerce Platforms
- Content Development
- Creative Development
- Front-end Development
- Functional Prototyping
- Content Management
- Digital Style Guides
Why Invest Into A New Website?
94% of first impressions relate to your site’s web design – Research Gate
Your audience’s first impression can have a lasting impact on how they perceive your business. When it comes to your website, the majority of first impressions come from your site’s design.
75% of website credibility comes from design – Stantford Research
When someone finds your business online, you want them to see that you’re a legit business. With so many unsafe sites on the web, a poorly designed website can make you look like you’re untrustworthy or running a scam.
73% of companies invest in design to help their brand stand out from competitors – Research by Adore
At least 73% of companies invest in design, from product to website design, so they can differentiate themselves from their online competitors. When you’re competing with dozens of companies on the web, you need to give your website a unique touch to help you stand out.
Users spend 88% more time on pages with videos – Social Media Week Study
When you’re optimizing and building your website, don’t neglect the integration of videos. Users spend more time on pages with videos. This tool not only makes your site more visually appealing, but it gets your audience to engage with your website.
Make sure your website is optimized for mobile – Research By Quartz
70% of all internet access comes from mobile phones. With so many existing and potentially new visitors who will be checking out your website on their phones before their computers, make sure you optimize the mobile experience to ensure a positive lasting impression for your visitors.
89% of consumers will switch to a competitor after a poor user experience – Salesforce Research
Not only do you need to worry about setting a positive first impression, but you also need to worry about maintaining that positivity as users continue to browse on your site. A beautifully designed website will go to waste if users can’t correctly browse your website and find information.
A Word From Our Client
“I’ve been working with Spotlight for a year as they’ve helped with web development, digital advertising and video for the organization I work for. The experience has been great. I appreciate their willingness to learn about our organization and help take our brand to the next level. The Spotlight team is always readily available for assistance whenever it is needed!”-EVENTIDE
For peopel looking to get involved with our website design services, what is the process for that?
I think the best method is to sit down with myself or one of our other sales representatives and uncover what their goals and needs are since everyone’s a little bit different. At the end of the day, everyone wants more business and to drive traffic to get leads. There are 100 different ways to build a website. We can figure out what’s right for you and start to build around that.
Working with us is as easy as booking a 15-minute meeting! A Spotlight Media representative will join you on a brief Zoom call to discuss your company’s needs and goals with your website.
CONTACT SPOTLIGHT MEDIA TODAY!
Email: [email protected]
Phone: (701) 478-7768
Address: 4609 33rd Ave S, Suite 304 Fargo, ND 58104