LizardWhen I first moved in with my wife, I had a bit of a bachelor’s pad.  As the months rolled into our first year together she finally mustered the courage to ask me about some tiny pewter figurines I had in random places throughout the house.

“They’re dragons,” I replied.

As the words rolled off my tongue, a second sentence formed in the back of my brain:

“Why the @#$! do I have dragons sitting in my house at age 39???”

Don’t laugh – your website is just as bad

I couldn’t believe I hadn’t noticed them before.  They were there for so long they had just become part of the furniture I guess.

Of course I agree with all of you readers out there: they are cool looking and can intimidate guests, but they fall rather short as decor for your home.  Plus, they don’t match with our drapes and could be considered a fire hazard in most fantasy realms.

Your websites these days are littered with their equivalent of my dragon figurines: cabinet manufacturers’ logos. They sit on somewhat random pages throughout your website staring back at you in odd ways.  As if the eyes of that logo could make a prospect tremble in fear and rush to buy something from you.

Why that’s really bad

“It’s time to say goodbye to MANUFACTURER logos on your website”

Of course having other companies logos all over your site is silly.  Think about it.  For those prospects in the Greenhouse Phase, it’s worse than meaningless: it’s confusing.  For those prospects ready to buy, they probably arrived at your site from other means because your website lacks authority to attract a steady volume of visitors.  Most likely, it works against you.

If someone wants Brand X, but you don’t have Brand X on your website, do you think they’ll call you or move on to another website? Hint: It’s the latter.  I bet you didn’t think of that when you plastered your supplier’s logos all over your website like an Ashton Kutcher wannabe.

The goal of your website is to get people curious to want to learn more about you (not your suppliers).  Wouldn’t you rather get a call from someone wanting Brand X (that you don’t carry) so you could ask them why they love Brand X so much.  Then you can try to position one of the brands you do carry which offers similar benefits.

You should be embarassed (like I was)

You forgot what it was all about: prospects want to do business with you and that’s what you should be marketing and selling.  After all, you’re the one who will stand behind the product, it’s installation and warranty.  You’re the one they will call first and you’re the one they trust.

So what next?

I know your manufacturer selfishly requires you to put their logo on your website so you can get all those amazing t-shirts and baseball caps at the end of the year. Resist the urge.  Tell them no, but offer them an alternative.

Explain to them that their logo is much better served on your blog underneath an article they helped you write about a topic your readers care about.  It doesn’t belong on the main pages of your website any longer.  Those pages are reserved for you and you alone.

Just because a cabinet manufacturer “requires” you to do something, doesn’t mean you should do it. After all, if they had their way, we’d all still be listening to walkmen, wearing parachute pants and decorating our houses with tiny pewter dragons.