Last month I partnered with internet marketing company, Hochman Consultants, as a part-time Senior Consultant to add usability and accessibility services for their clients.
Since this is new, I felt I might take some time to answer your questions about how and where to hire me for usability and accessibility site reviews.
What is the Main Reason for Joining Hochman Consultants?
As an independent consultant I am a third party vendor for agencies in need of website usability assistance.
Building and promoting a website is not a one-person job anymore. The technology changed quickly, creating the need for more skills. Internet marketing has grown into its own industry, with branches for people and companies to specialize in, such as search engine optimization and paid advertising campaigns.
Programmers scramble to learn the next new language. Mobile devices created a market for mobile apps. The internet made video and podcasts possible, which also requires equipment and software. Security, server maintenance, and updates to content management software like WordPress can be a daily routine.
Even though there are services that provide cheap and easy website hosting and design, they are inexpensive because the site owners do not know or care about meeting user experience, usability and accessibility guidelines, standards and compliance.
Eventually I found myself unable to help new or existing clients because what they asked for was out of my area of expertise.
Although I have enjoyed being a sub-contractor and developed relationships with internet marketing agencies over many years, the projects began to slow down in frequency as more companies hired more in-house staff.
Even now, however, selling usability and accessibility is difficult. Building websites that everyone can use is not a business requirement for the vast majority of companies out there.
When I directed my passion for user experience and human behavior for websites towards studying for certification in accessibility, I began to write about it more often. Being an advocate for disabled persons, or anyone with a physical, mental, or emotional impairment, permanent or temporary, came naturally for me because accessibility is a close cousin to usability.
I have known Jonathan Hochman for about 15 years. We met as speakers at search engine marketing conferences and our paths would cross over the years. He has a legal background, which attracted him to the accessibility testing work I do.
They provide services that I could no longer provide for the target market I enjoy working with, which is small and medium businesses.
I retained my own consulting business so that I can continue to serve larger companies who require more robust website or software testing.
For Hochman Consultants, site maintenance and support falls into their wheelhouse. Web design and marketing solutions for startups and smaller companies are provided at especially reasonable fees. I will be adding a layer of support for each client in the areas of making sure their websites meet all the current design guidelines for conversions and search engines.
Most importantly, because of the rise in ADA website accessibility lawsuits, I will be providing accessibility reviews, testing and guidance to clients.
Both of our websites were redesigned and are live but are works in progress as we get used to the changes a partnership brings. I will be assisting with their newsletter and writing in their blog, while continue to write here and for Search Engine Journal.
How Do We Hire You?
If you are a small or medium business in need of a full service agency, please go directly to Hochman Consultants and start there. I am part of their team and can be added to existing projects or hired for specific usability and accessibility reviews and testing. In fact, you can book usability reviews now.
The internet marketing agencies and SEO consultants with whom I provide usability and conversions website audits for will find there is no change. I continue to be a sub-contractor for digital marketing companies with clients whose websites need usability or accessibility support.
I am excited to continue my favorite work, which is helping companies improve their websites so that their online business generates more revenue, traffic and customer loyalty.
Partnering with Hochman Consultants means that more doors will open for small and medium businesses who wish to compete with larger businesses online.
If the competition isn’t paying attention to usability, accessibility, conversions and mobile design, and your website does, guess who gets the traffic and revenue?