How Quentin James built a successful design business from a humble college project.
Quentin James Design is a web and graphic design agency based in Preston, Lancashire in North West England. We spoke with founder and owner Quentin James about transitioning from traditional graphic design to website design and how ease-of-use makes Statcounter the right fit for his clients.
" Most of my clients aren't particularly technically savvy but they can understand Statcounter so easily. They just get it."
Founder and Owner, Quentin James Design
Towards the end of his 5 year Graphic Design degree program at college in Blackpool, Quentin landed a summer work placement in San Francisco in 1997 with a large graphic design agency who were also creating websites for clients.
Charging up to $400,000 for a 50 page website was not unheard-of due to the scarcity of design agencies making websites at the time, and the size of the clients the agency serviced.
He recalls how the web in its infancy was restricted by the infrastructure of the day.
We were working on projects where the guidance on the page size was maximum of 50 kilobytes per page. So everything had to be based around what was possible in terms of getting the content to people because everyone was on dial-up.
Quentin James Design Website (source: Quentin James Design)
Back home in Lancashire, another college project involved creating a website for a housing developer. The business was sceptical of being able to sell houses from a website. However, being a college project, it was pro bono and so they went along for the ride.
A year later, with six house sales generated directly from the website, they showed a renewed interest in the web as a marketing tool.
They called me back to discuss what had happened in the last twelve months with the website. And it turned out that they'd sold six houses based purely from inquiries generated from the website. That would be '99-2000 so there weren't many developers who had websites that showed everything in detail about their houses.
That is when it all kicked off for Quentin. With this proven business model of attracting house buyers with a well designed and informative website, his building developer client shouted from the hilltops and Quentin found himself with a steady stream of web design clients. His client list included more housing developers, specialist piling companies, engineering companies, and investor relations firms, some of which he still works with today, twenty years later.
The chairman of the house-building section that I'd dealt with, at one of his board meetings, proclaimed that the internet was the greatest thing ever and everyone should get on board. He saw this as the future and he could prove it with these six sales. And so all the other companies rang me up looking for websites.
Sheet Piling (UK) Ltd Website (source: Quentin James Design)
Quentin has been using Statcounter since 2005 and currently has forty of his clients set up as Users with their own logins and email reports. He credits Statcounter’s ease-of-use for him and his clients as the biggest advantage over Google Analytics.
I find the Google Analytics interface horrific. And Statcounter is just dead easy and dead clear and dead simple to use.
Most of my clients aren't particularly technically savvy but they can understand Statcounter so easily. They just get it. I know if I gave them a login for Google Analytics, I'd spend hours on the phone every week explaining stuff to them.
Find out more about Quentin James Design on his website at quentinjamesdesign.co.uk and connect on Twitter @quentinjames